In Germany, Muslim Politician Receives Communion at Bishop’s Mass

However, communion of the Catholic sacraments to a non-Catholic is illicit under canon 844 of the code of canon law.

Newsroom (30/05/2022 6:50 PM, Gaudium Press) In Germany, during the Catholic Days (Der Katholikentag), the president of the Baden-Württemberg parliament, Muhterem Aras, received communion at the Mass being officiated by the bishop of Rottenburg-Stuttgart, Bishop Gebhard Fürst. The Parlamentary official is a Muslim. 

Protestants probably also received communion, as reported by the Stuttgarter Zeitung: “When a participant asked at the distribution of the host if he could receive communion as a Protestant, the lady distributing it explained: ‘I don’t know. I only know that it is the body of Christ.'” Observers point out a rampant doctrinal confusion regarding the Eucharist.

Fr. Christian Hermes, a Catholic priest who took part in the liturgical service, presented a few weeks ago a statement on the Eucharist, along with Protestant pastor Sören Schwesig. They asked their church leaders to allow all Christians a permanent admission to the Eucharistic Sacrament.

Code of Canon Law

However, communicatio in sacris, or more particularly communion of the Catholic sacraments to a non-Catholic is illicit under canon 844 of the code of canon law:

Can. 844 §1. Catholic ministers administer the sacraments licitly to Catholic members of the Christian faithful alone, who likewise receive them licitly from Catholic ministers alone, without prejudice to the prescripts of §§2, 3, and 4 of this canon, and can. 861, §2.

§2. Whenever necessity requires it or true spiritual advantage suggests it, and provided that danger of error or of indifferentism is avoided, the Christian faithful for whom it is physically or morally impossible to approach a Catholic minister are permitted to receive the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick from non-Catholic ministers in whose Churches these sacraments are valid.

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§3. Catholic ministers administer the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick licitly to members of Eastern Churches which do not have full communion with the Catholic Church if they seek such on their own accord and are properly disposed. This is also valid for members of other Churches which in the judgment of the Apostolic See are in the same condition in regard to the sacraments as these Eastern Churches.

§4. If the danger of death is present or if, in the judgment of the diocesan bishop or conference of bishops, some other grave necessity urges it, Catholic ministers administer these same sacraments licitly also to other Christians not having full communion with the Catholic Church, who cannot approach a minister of their own community and who seek such on their own accord, provided that they manifest Catholic faith in respect to these sacraments and are properly disposed.

§5. For the cases mentioned in §§2, 3, and 4, the diocesan bishop or conference of bishops is not to issue general norms except after consultation at least with the local competent authority of the interested non-Catholic Church or community.

Canon 861, cited in the preceding norm, recalls that in cases of danger of death any person may administer baptism, provided he has the proper intention and uses the valid materials and forms.

In the words of Pedro María Reyes Vizcaíno, doctor of canon law and author of Ius Canonicum, the code “establishes the general rule that communicatio in sacris is not licit. The reason is that, to administer the sacraments is necessary the unity of those who intervene, minister and faithful. Certainly, as has already been indicated, the sacraments signify unity – especially the Eucharist – but they do not produce it. Instead, Sacraments presuppose unity, and therefore unity must exist before sacraments are administered.”

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With files from Infocatólica.

Compiled by Gustavo Kralj

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