- WHY FATIMA
- FATIMA CENTER
- PRAYER & DEVOTION
April 15, 2005
Fort Erie: Catholics throughout North America are stunned and outraged at the news that a consecrated Host from a 1998 Papal Mass in Rome was sold on EBAY.
The Host was posted for sale on Saturday, April 9, with a minimum bid of $100.00. The seller was a non-Catholic who reportedly lives in Sloan, Iowa.
Father Nicholas Gruner, the Director of the Fatima Center, said the modern abuse of Communion in the hand in Catholic churches made the incident possible. "Communion in the hand has always been forbidden in the Catholic Church precisely to prevent sacrilege," Father Gruner said.
For years, Father Gruner has been in the forefront opposing Communion in the hand, and lay “Eucharistic Ministers”, in his writings, speeches, and radio and television appearances.
“By the widespread practice of Communion in the hand,” says Father Gruner, “today’s Catholic churchmen give the impression that the Blessed Sacrament is merely something blessed that can be handled by anyone. It is sacrilegious, and makes it easy for corrupt persons to confiscate the Sacred Host for an evil purpose.”
The seller of the Host wrote on EBAY, “First of all, I AM NOT CATHOLIC AND DO NOT BELIEVE I’M GOING TO HELL FOR SELLING THIS COLLECTIBLE.”
The seller then stated he obtained the Host by twice going for Communion during a Papal Mass at the Vatican. “I ate my own wafer,” he said, “then I went back and got another one to save and he gave me another one, but I did get a very dirty look.”
Along with the consecrated Host, the seller was offering a bulletin from the Mass, four stamps and a bottle opener the seller claimed was blessed by the Pope because the seller was holding it during the Mass.
The Fatima Center’s Father Paul Kramer stresses the gravity of the outrage. “The Promoter of Justice at the Vatican (which is the equivalent position to that of Attorney General) should charge the individual with sacrilege and theft of Church property,” Father Kramer said.
The incident is one of theft, because Holy Communion is given on the condition that the person consumes It immediately. “An individual has no right to dispose of It as his property”, said Father Kramer. “Holy Communion is given under the condition that the recipient is a Catholic in the state of grace and that the Host is consumed on the spot.”
“It is also sacrilege,” said Father Kramer, “because it is an extremely grave desecration of the Blessed Sacrament, which is the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ. In previous ages, even the temporal government regarded such an offense as a capital crime.”
The Fatima Center notes that a dangerous precedent has been set. Now that EBAY has allowed this sacrilege once, it will be allowed to occur repeatedly unless Catholics raise a firm protest.
Catholics throughout the country are calling for a boycott of EBAY until the company publicly apologizes and promises never to allow another such occurrence. To register a complaint to EBAY, go to http://pages.ebay.com/help/contact_inline/index.html or call 1-800-322-9266 or 1-888-749-3229.
The Associated Press reported that the Host was finally sold on Monday, April 11 for $2,000.00. The buyer allegedly was a Catholic in California who purchased the Host to save it from desecration. It quoted the buyer as saying, “Any minute I waited, It could have fallen into the hands of a witch or Satanist. That’s Jesus in the Host!” It is hoped that the Catholic turned the Host over to a Catholic priest so that It could be reverently consumed. It would also be fitting for EBAY to refund the Catholic gentleman the $2000.00 he paid to rescue the Host.
“What was permitted to happen on EBAY is a public insult to Our Blessed Lord and a slap in the face to Catholics worldwide,” said John Vennari, Editor of Catholic Family News. “EBAY has permitted the most sacred Object of the Catholic Church, the Blessed Sacrament, to be desecrated, setting it on the auction block as if It were common chattel.”
The Fatima Center urges Catholics worldwide to offer Rosaries and prayers of reparation for the sacrilege. “I would exhort all Catholics to make an extra visit to the Blessed Sacrament, and to say at least one extra Rosary in reparation,” said Father Gruner. “We also urge Catholics to make public reparation by group prayers, Rosaries and Masses.
“Catholics should also make their protests known to EBAY,” said Father Gruner, “and should not use their services until the company apologizes and promises never to do it again. EBAY is responsible for a public crime against religion.”
The Fatima Center, home of “The Fatima Crusader”, is the world’s largest Fatima apostolate campaigning for the promotion of the full Message of Fatima, for the release of the entire third Secret and for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It is headed by Father Nicholas Gruner, who has spent more than 27 years of his pristhood promotiong the Fatima Message. Its outreach includes the print media, Internet, Radio and Television.
The Fatima Crusader articles on the subject of Communion in the hand are posted at http://archive.fatima.org/crusader/cr74/cr74pg77.asp, and at http://archive.fatima.org/crusader/cr28/cr28pg34.asp.