Holy SPIT: wine in the Eucharist

The Phoenix diocese just got news from their bishop: you can survive on bread alone. During Mass, that is, since he is removing wine from the communion, save for a few times a year.

Bishop Thomas Olmsted has taken the action as part of a new translation of the Mass that will start in coming months. The Arizona Republic reports that no other diocese in the country will be removing wine from the Communion. Since 1975, bread and wine have been available to parishioners during Catholic Communion. Bread and wine are believed to be transformed during the service into the body and blood of Christ. There is no obligation to take both and the Diocese of Phoenix’ press release underscored that “… bread alone makes it possible to receive all the fruit of the Eucharistic grace.”

Criticism mounted of the wine-less mass. So the chalice may not disappearing a Mass near you soon. Unless you live in Phoenix.

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11 Responses to “Holy SPIT: wine in the Eucharist”

  1. I’m not sure this is the right place to get into the nitty-gritty of internal Catholic goings-on, or the theology of Catholic worship. Of course to each his own on a personal blog, but this has the potential to fan some flames better hosed down elsewhere.

  2. As a Catholic, I’m guessing that the Bishop’s announcement only means that consecrated wine will not be distributed at Mass. Wine will still be consecrated at the altar.

    By the way, the phrase “Holy SPIT” looks/sounds really bad in this context. I don’t think you meant any harm, but some Catholics will be offended.

  3. @wolfshield – As I understand, that is correct. Distribution under both types will be reserved to certain feasts and celebrations

  4. Will he also rewrite his Mass to exclude the blood?
    I think most Catholics will (or should) be offended by this bishop.

  5. What the heck does ‘holy spit’ mean, and how applicable?

    It used to be that Communion was only the wafer and only the priest had wine during the service.
    So the proposed change will not offend the older members. It must might be really due to $cutbacks rather than new improved interpretations of the bible.

  6. Hi all, thanks for your comments.

    For those who are just stumbling on this post, I run a series of news items called “SIPPED and SPIT.” In this item, wine was “spit” because it was rejected from Mass in Phoenix.

    Wine and the Church have a long, intertwined history. It’s too bad that this diocese is seeking to undo that a little. It will be interesting to see if other churches in the US follow suit.

    I think there’s probably an interesting story in sacramental wine used in the US today. If anyone has any industry or ecclesiastical backstory–or interesting vignettes from their parish–I, for one, would be interested in hearing more.

  7. Simply a way for a careerist bishop to ingratiate himself to the Vatican and advance his career at the expense of the un-ordained.

  8. Appropriately said, Mr. Churchman!

  9. Interesting decision,

    “bread alone makes it possible to receive all the fruit of the Eucharistic grace.”


  10. Bishop Olmsted has reversed his decision on communion wine according to azcentral.com

  11. I accept your explanation however; I still believe that Holy Spit may be offensive to us. I suggest you change it to something less offensive. I am certain you would’t do the same if it involves wines related to Muslims or Jews; they make wine too, Turkey and Israel.
    Just a suggestion.


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