Dear Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (EMHC),
Greetings to you and yours! As your pastor, I am grateful for your ministry and service to our community.
As an EMHC you are entrusted with the care and the distribution of the Eucharist at the Masses. However, you are not commissioned to bring the Eucharist outside the Mass for any reason, including to the sick or for those who cannot attend Mass. Only Ministers to the Sick (MTS) are trained, fingerprinted, commissioned and have the authority to take the Eucharist from the Mass or the Tabernacle for the purpose of bringing the Blessed Sacrament to the sick, home bound, or hospital.
The Bishop of Orlando grants the priests and pastors of the Diocese with the authority to commission an EMHC to bring the Eucharist on a part time basis to a family member and provides instructions and training to do so properly. If there are medical circumstances that exceed the part time basis for bringing the Blessed Sacrament such as a long term or terminal illness, then pastor approval is required.
In an effort to maintain the integrity of the Blessed Sacrament, an EMHC who wishes to bring the Eucharist to a family member outside the Mass MUST adhere to the following:
- An EMHC must fill out an EMHC Distribution of the Eucharist to a Family Member Request Form (see below).
- Once the Permission form is completed, our MTS Coordinator, Tamila Hennessy, who will provide it to the pastor for approval.
- Once approved by the pastor, the MTS Coordinator will contact you and set up a meeting to provide training, a pyx, a burse, and a Communion to the Sick ritual book.
- An EMHC must receive a shortened Ministry to the Sick (MTS) and In-House Training by the MTS Coordinator. This training will also include Holy Name of Jesus (HNJ) protocols and procedures, which includes praying with the sick using the ritual Communion to the Sick book.
- An EMHC will be reverent and will follow the HNJ protocol for obtaining the Eucharist at Mass. If the EMHC cannot attend Mass, the MTS Coordinator, a commissioned MTS or the Sacristan will obtain the Host from the Tabernacle for them.
- An EMHC must use a pyx (a special container that only holds the Blessed Sacrament) and carry the pyx in a burse (a special pouch used to hold the pyx and is worn around the neck) and proceed immediately to the communion visit.
Once again, thank you for your ministry and for your cooperation in observing these ministerial guidelines.
Gratefully In Christ, Rev. Scott M. Circe, Pastor
Please complete the below application or complete this form and return to the Life Center Office.