Christ Our King Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers
Extraordinary Ministers for the distribution of Holy Communion are properly formed, instructed and commissioned lay persons. EM’s may be male or female. They should reflect the cultural diversity of our parish community. These ministers are commissioned for the Chirst Our King community, to aid in the distribution of Holy Communion at Mass and to the sick, homebound, or imprisoned when ordinary ministers of Holy Communion are unavailable thereby providing love, support, and care to others.
Ordinary Minister of Holy Communion
Technically, Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers is the correct and proper term (the "ordinary" minister being the priest celebrant and deacon(s)). The ordinary Minister of Holy Communion is a bishop, priest or deacon (canon 910, n. 1). However, other members of the faithful, known as Extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, may be commissioned to assist with the distribution of the Sacrament as needed(canons230,n.3and910,n.2).
Roles, Duties, etc
At the direction of Pope Benedict XVI, extraordinary ministers of holy Communion are not permitted to assist in the purification of the sacred vessels at Masses in the United States.
Training and Commissioning
Annual training sessions begin after the New Year, and Extraordinary Eucharistic Ministers are commissioned on the Feast of Corpus Christi for the period of one year. Annual renewal is necessary.
After preparation for this ministry is completed, a formal commissioning of EM’s takes place during a Mass setting presided by the pastor or parocial vicar. EM’s are to exercise their ministry only in the parish or institution they have been delegated by the pastor. An “Order for the Commissioning of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion” can be found in the Book of Blessings, Ch. 63.
Liturgical Norms of the Archdiocese of Atlanta
Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion
One of the duties of the bishop is to delegate through pastoral assignment, members of the lay faithful to assist in the distribution of Holy Communion. They are called extraordinary ministers to distinguish them from those who are the ordinary ministers of Holy Communion, the bishop, the priest, and the deacon. In the recent instruction on the Eucharist, Redemptionis Sacramentum,the following direction is given, and I ask that it be followed faithfully in the Archdiocese, not only in parlance, but also where the words themselves appear is as printed text, such as parish bulletins and websites.
This function (extraordinary minister) is to be understood strictly according to the name by which it is known, that is to say, that of extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, and not "special minister of Holy Communion" nor "extraordinary minister of the Eucharist" nor "special minister of the Eucharist" by which names the meaning of this function is unnecessarily and improperly broadened.
Also, the term Eucharistic Minister is to be used only to describe those who are the ordinary ministers of the Eucharist: the bishop, the priest and the deacon. (2004-letter)