EMHC Guidelines

1.  EMHC’s should arrive at least 15 minutes prior to Mass and check in with the Sacristan.  If you arrive late, you may need to be replaced.  If replaced, you will not serve that mass.  The Sacristan/Co-Sacristan will go over your assignment.

2.  If you are unable to serve at the mass scheduled, make arrangements for a substitute or notify the Sacristan assigned to that mass so that he/she will be able to find a replacement for you.

3.  As Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, we have been given the privilege to distribute the Precious Body & Blood to the members of our Church.  Therefore, we should dress appropriately for this ministry.  Men should wear dress shirts and tie or jacket and dress shirt with nice slacks.  Women should wear a dress, pants or skirt with a top that has sleeves.  Please no shorts, short skirts, spaghetti strap dresses, low cut tops or bare midriff clothing & no jeans, t-shirts, flip flops, sneaker or tennis shoes.  Also no excessive or showy jewelry please.

4.  After the sign of peace, EMHC’s will come forward on the Altar using the handrails on either side of the altar and stand facing the congregation in front of the chairs.  Ministers serving on the right side of the church (Mary’s side) will come up on the right side of the altar.  Ministers serving on the left side of the church (Joseph’s side) will come up on the left side of the altar.  Those serving the cup will stand in front of the bread ministers.

The Sacristan will receive the Precious Body & Blood from Father/Deacon.  Father/Deacon will then distribute the Precious Body & Blood to the EMHC and then give them their assigned ciborium or cup.  All ministers will move to the side & face the altar until Father comes down before proceeding to their designated station. EMHC should not walk down the center aisle walking to their assigned positions.  They should only use the side aisles.

5.  When distributing, say only “The Body of Christ” or “The Blood of Christ”.  Nothing more shall be added to these phrases, such as the persons name.  Remember, handicapped parishioners sitting in the handicapped areas are to receive Holy Communion first and then go to your assigned position.

6.  Please wipe & turn the cup after each presentation.  Ensure a different part of the purificator is used after each wipe.  Please make sure the purificator is open fully and use all areas when wiping the cup.

7.  When an adult or child approaches you with their arms crossed over their chest for a blessing, the EMHC should touch them on their head or shoulder, SMILE and say “God Bless You”.

8.  When finished, EMHC’s will return the cup with the purificator and the ciborium to the credence table.  A Sacristan/Deacon will combine the remaining hosts into the gold ciborium and either the Deacon or Sacristan will place the ciborium in the Tabernacle & close the door.  If you have Precious Blood remaining in your cup, with your back to the congregation, consume the remaining Precious Blood.  If there is a lot, ask another EMHC or the Sacristan to help you consume.

9.  A consecrated Host that is dropped on the altar or credence tablecloth may be picked up and placed back into the ciborium.  The Host does not have to be consumed.  However, if a consecrated Host is dropped on the floor you are to pick up the Host and place it in the palm of your hand.  When you go back to the altar, you may do one of two things.

a.   Consume the Host yourself.

b.   Give the consecrated Host to the Sacristan/Deacon & tell him/her that it has been dropped.  The Sacristan will either consume the host or take it to the Sacristy & dissolve it in a small bowl of water.  Once the Host is completely dissolved the Sacristan will take it outside & pour it into the ground.