Extraordinary Ministers of the Eucharist
Coordinator: Jack Polakowski (336) 282-2415
What is the role of the Eucharistic Minister? (Purpose)
- To proclaim the Body and Blood of Christ in ritual action, and in the action of one's personal life.
- To show by their personal living that the Eucharist is not just what we believe, it is who we are and what we do.
- To help the parish community experience the mass as a foretaste of the Heavenly Banquet.
Who can participate in this ministry? (Basic Requirements)
- A fully initiated Catholic, one who has received the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and First Eucharist and is in good standing in the church.
- Be active in the Catholic faith and registered member of St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church Community.
What is the appropriate attire when serving in any liturgical ministry?
Dress according to the dignity of the Ministry:
- For men: dress shirt and tie is preferable (jacket optional)
- For women: a dress or skirt of appropriate length, or dress slacks, appropriate top (no halter tops or tops with spaghetti straps)
- For both: NO shorts, sweat suits, jeans, crop pants, sneakers, t-shirts, tank tops
Note: even if not scheduled for a particular Mass, please come appropriately dressed, stop in the check-in area, and offer to be a substitute if needed
What is expected of me in performing this ministry? (Ministry Requirements)
- Strive to grow in the knowledge, love, and understanding of the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.
- Being aware of your scheduled Ministry date, and to accept and carry out the specific ministerial assignment, i.e. Host Minister, Chalice Minister and role of Captain.
- Personally find a substitute if needed.
- Attend training sessions, and Workshops when scheduled.
How do I know what my specific ministerial position is at a given liturgical celebration?
- Assignments are noted on the schedule on the website.
- Captains are noted on the schedule in the Bulletin the week before.
- Assignments are also posted on the bulletin board in the check-in area indicating your position at that liturgy. You are a captain when your name is underscored in red and the letter "C" also appears after your name on the Ministry Schedule.
This involves the following:
- Reflecting on the readings for the weekend Liturgy (or Holyday)
- Personally committing to Jesus through daily prayer and reflection on the Eucharist
- Check four (4) weeks of schedules online. Click Here to download.
- The coming weekends schedule is printed in the bulletin.
Day of the Liturgy
When should I arrive at church and what is the check-in procedure?
Captains arrive 20 minutes before the liturgy start time.
All others, 15 minutes before the liturgy start time.
Upon arrival all ministers are asked to:
- put a check mark next to your name on the Ministry schedule, so that Captains will know you are present.
- note your assignment position. Refer to the diagram on the bulletin board.
- check the bulletin board for any special notes to Eucharistic Minister
- be attentive to the actions taking place, and be ready to adjust to any unexpected needs that may arise
N.B. Those who arrive less than 10 minutes before the liturgy starts will be considered as "no shows", and substitutes will be located. Captains are to make every effort to fill all absent positions with "walk in" subs before the liturgy starts.
When do I go the altar area and where do I stand?
After the Fracturing:
- all Ministers go to their assigned position on the lower level facing the altar, after using the hand sanitizer on either side of the altar area.
What is the procedure for the distribution of the Eucharist to the Ministers?
As soon as the Celebrant serves himself the Host and Precious Blood, and NO SOONER, if there is no Deacon:
- EM in Position 11 will :
- Move up the steps and stand at the back corner of the carpet on the tile (to the right of the celebrant).
- The celebrant will bring you the host followed by his chalice and a purificator. After you have received the Blessed Sacrament you will follow behind the celebrant distributing the Precious Blood.
- After you have distributed to the last EM bring the chalice back to the altar, DO NOT consume any remaining Precious Blood. Place the chalice on the altar.
- Return to your earlier position at the corner of the carpet and wait for the celebrant to continue distributing the chalices and patens to the EM's.
- The celebrant will give you your paten and the two of you will proceed to the lower level and stand side by side (always be adaptable however as the celebrant may switch places with another Host Minister).
- EM's in Position 9 and 10:
- Once you have received your chalice and paten, go up the main aisle together to the back pews. An usher will direct you to the Special Needs parishioners to be served Communion.
- You are to go to them not them come to you.
- When finished distributing the Blessed Sacrament, return to the front by way of the side aisle near the statue of Mary and Child. The paten is to be placed on the altar, any remaining Precious Blood is to be consumed and the chalice and purificator placed on the counter in the sacristy.
- To better protect the consecrated Precious Blood in the chalice while walking up and down the aisle; place your folded purificator over the top of the chalice and hold it down with your hand.
- EM in Position 1
- After you receive the host from the celebrant, follow him up the stairs to the altar.
- At the altar the celebrant will give you the chalice to receive the Precious Blood.
- After giving the chalice back, you will pick up the tray with the six chalices and purificators and follow the celebrant as he distributes the chalices and purificators to the ministers. Be sure you have the purificators.
- After the last chalice is distributed you will place the tray on the credence table, and then wait for the celebrant to give you your paten. You will then proceed to your position as Bread #1.
- When the Celebrant comes down the steps with his paten, everyone turns around to distribute Communion.
Distribution of the Eucharist to the congregation,
- When EM's distribute Communion, acknowledge the holiness of the moment by taking time for each person, making eye contact, and having a welcoming appearance
- When finished at your assigned location, observe if other Communion lines are still long, and assist those Ministers as needed.
- If a person approaches a Minister with crossed arms, that means they are not ready to receive the Eucharist. Sign a cross over their heads, and give them a blessing, e.g., "Receive the blessings of Christ". This also applies to babies.
- When distributing the Blessed sacrament, use ONLY the words, "The Body of Christ" and "The Blood of Christ".
- EM's take their Chalice to the altar and consume unused Precious Blood, then take their Chalice and purificator to the sacristy leaving them both on the counter, and return to your pew (without crossing a Communion line).
- Host EM's take their paten to the altar. The Celebrant will put the unused hosts onto an paten. An EM(s) then takes any remaining empty patens to the sacristy and returns to their pew. NEVER stack the patens on top of each other.
- The Celebrant will purify his chalice at the altar; all others will be purified in the sacristy by a Deacon if present or the EM Captains after Mass.
- The two CAPTAINS (along with any other available Ministers), go back to the sacristy, and wash all of the chalices and patens putting them away in the cabinets. DO NOT soak the Chalices gentling dip them in warm, soapy water and wipe off the mouth, then rinse.
- Be sure you have cleared everything off the Credence table
- The Tabernacle should be locked in the front and the back and both keys returned to the hooks in the cabinet in the sacristy, unless there is Mass immediately following.
Duties of Captains
- Arrive 20 minutes before Mass is to begin
- Know who your Captain partner is, especially if either or both of the scheduled Captains have been substituted for.
- Check the Assignment List in the check-in area to insure all assigned Ministers are present. Start looking for substitutes as necessary. Any Minister not checked in by10 minutes before Mass is considered absent and should be substituted.
- After Mass, both Captains go back to the sacristy, wash the vessels and put them away in their proper place. Be sure that the Tabernacle is locked in the front and the back, the keys are put away and that the Credence Table has been cleared.