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Should you/would you take communion whilst pregnant?

(52 Posts)

Just that really. I have just found out I'm expecting and I don't know what to do about taking communion in church. Is it ok to take the wine? Or should I only take the bread? Or avoid all together? I'm not ready to out myself just yet. Wwyd?

supergreenuk Tue 15-Apr-14 19:04:03

I did once. It's only a sip or a lip dip. Do what ever your comfortable with.

mathanxiety Tue 15-Apr-14 18:57:54

RC here too and you can receive either the host or the wine or both. Some people with gluten problems only take the wine. Some people with reservations about either passing on or getting germs only take the host. The diocese I am in issued a ban on dipping the host into the wine a while back for some theological reason that I can't remember. I personally rarely take the wine, a hangover from childhood when this option wasn't available.

In my church any of the Eucharistic ministers or the priest will finish the wine, so someone who is pregnant won't be left with quite a large alcoholic drink on her plate so to speak. There is also a cantor and organist/pianist and they normally finish singing and playing after everyone returns to their pew, so they are normally the last to be offered wine - they normally finish what remains in the last two chalices while the ministers and priest finish up the other four to six remaining chalices (big church, always full).

Same arrangement with the Purificator and turning the chalice slightly.

Irishmammybread Tue 15-Apr-14 16:50:37

I'm RC and at my Church there is the option to receive both kinds but it is completely optional,a lot of people choose not to and some don't receive at all but just go to the priest for a blessing. We have three Eucharistic Ministers who assist the priest in distribution, one distributes consecrated hosts alongside the priest and the other two stand to each side with the chalices of consecrated wine. I was asked to become a Eucharistic Minister last year, but when I became pregnant, even though I specifically asked the midwife the same question and she assured me a small quantity of alcohol wouldn't do any harm, I had to tell the priest very early as even the smell of wine made me really nauseous so I just couldn't do it. Also as a Eucharistic Minister you have to finish the contents of your chalice if there's any left at the end because as a Catholic we do believe after the Consecration it's no longer just "wine" (though realistically there is still an alcohol content!) and that it is sacred.
There's no way you can hide a pregnancy for long when you consistently avoid alcohol in front of a few hundred people on an altar!
From a hygiene point of view we have a folded cloth called a Purificator and after each person has sipped we wipe the area with a clean section of cloth which is then moved down through your fingers so a fresh section is used each time (bit like one of those hand towels on a roller ) and the chalice is rotated slightly each time to offer the next person a fresh area of the rim.

Yorky Tue 15-Apr-14 15:28:12

When my dad used to buy the wine for church communion he would choose the highest alcohol content he could for the antiseptic effect of the alcohol. Not sure it made much difference, but that was his story! And maybe the fact that it tasted like paint stripper helped make sure people only took a dainty sip!
As for communion when pg, it never crossed my mind

NomDeClavier Tue 15-Apr-14 14:48:45

Many Catholic Churches still only receive in one kind so it's fine to just take the bread if you want. The best thing is to talk to your priest/vicar/pastor.

Migsy1 Tue 15-Apr-14 14:34:41

I think only one person thought you were Catholic.

MummyPigsFatTummy Mon 14-Apr-14 23:37:56

Not sure why the comments seem odd polythenegirl. You may not have specifically mentioned alcohol in your first post but it is hardly surprising that would be an assumption people would make when you raise Communion wine and pregnancy. I agree with Herc your post seems rather rude.

Polyethyl - are your fingers also scrupulously hygienic when dipping bread into the cup? And if so, are you sure of the personal hygiene of everybody else's fingers when dipping?!

Hi htbftm <waves green pom-poms like a loon> I agree with what you said. I love taking communion and it is a nice thought that little bean will get it too. I also love taking my LO up for his blessing too.

No Herc I didn't "mean to be so rude" and was not making any reference to your previous comment. There were a few comments after yours which I felt were a little strange shall we say and people presuming I'm catholic and only worried about the alcohol etc. I was actually trying to make light of it but obviously tone accounts for nothing on the internet.

Sorry if I offended you, it was not intentional.

HercShipwright Mon 14-Apr-14 16:01:09

polythenegirl did you mean to be so rude? I'd actually say it was pretty stupid insulting people who were just trying to be nice and helpful to you on your thread, to be honest. I won't be making that mistake again. I might be stupid but not that much.

htbftm Mon 14-Apr-14 15:57:31

Hi Poly! Good you c u off the conception thread! :-) I don't think the wine will do any harm at all- there's probably more in a trifle without even realising! I also think its nice that bump can share in the communion with me! As for germs, I think you probably get more from opening doors in town that aren't wiped in between each use! Enjoy communion I say! :-)

ZingSweetCoconut Mon 14-Apr-14 15:09:13

I take communion (unless feeling sick) and did with all my other pregnancies.

(expecting #7)

Polyethyl Mon 14-Apr-14 13:44:35

I'm another who dips the bread into the wine because I don't like the hygiene of sipping from the same cup that dozens of others have previously drunk from.

I teach first aid, and we are scrupulous about cleaning the mannequin in between each student practicing resuscitation breaths, and we increasingly encourage them to use 'training' face shields (as well as keeping a real face shield in their handbag in case of emergencies.)

If we are so scrupulously hygienic about putting our mouths to a Resusci Annie, then it is odd to me to be so relaxed about putting our mouths to the communion cup.

1. I'm not catholic
2. I'm religious not stupid
3. I'd rather drink wine than actual blood smile
4. My concerns we both the alcohol and the cup sharing. I don't see why everyone thinks it was just the alcohol. I didn't mention it I the original post.

Some very odd comments popping up! Lol

Pregnantagain7 Mon 14-Apr-14 13:43:37

Something else I just remembered when my daughter was preparing for her first holy communion last year a lot of the children didn't like taste of the wine so the were told to just let it touch their lips. Thinking about it now that is really unhygienic don't want to think how many germy kids do that on a Sunday!

Coconutty Mon 14-Apr-14 13:37:11

I'm no longer a practising Catholic but used to always feel icky at all the mouths and lips touching the cup so used to not drink it.

MummyPigsFatTummy Mon 14-Apr-14 13:32:51

splendide grin good point. Never heard that transubstantiation gets rid of germs though, but I guess that was not the OP's problem at least.

splendide Mon 14-Apr-14 12:41:52

As a catholic shouldn't you believe in the miracle of transubstantiation and therefore not think it's still wine as you drink it?

sammyad Mon 14-Apr-14 11:52:42

I panicked about this as I'm coeliac so usually only have the wine... Had a proper early pregnancy meltdown, then realised it couldn't possibly do any harm!

FairPhyllis Mon 14-Apr-14 10:35:13

Even if you only have the bread you are still taking communion in full - back in the day the people didn't use to take the wine, only the priests did.

There are a number of recovering alcoholics at my church including the priest and they only take the bread.

Intinction (dipping the wafer in) is actually the worst thing you can do re transmission of germs - fingers often slip in and contaminate the wine. Our diocese was told not to do intinction during the swine flu outbreak for this reason.

KitKat1985 Mon 14-Apr-14 10:27:17

If you're literally just having a sip of wine once a week, I really can't see that it would do any harm.

HercShipwright Mon 14-Apr-14 10:10:56

I'm catholic and I never take the wine. We didn't when I was a kid, so that's the way I've carried on. It's not to do with germs, it's just....not what we did when I was a kid.

squizita Mon 14-Apr-14 10:01:37

Bear in mind when you are confirmed/have 1st communion you're a kid (in RC and CofE at least) so it can't be that boozy? smile

You just need to let a drop touch your lips that is all. Should be fine.

Feels the guilt of only going at Easter and Christmas.

niminypiminy Mon 14-Apr-14 09:44:42

It's fine to have only bread -- you've still had communion in full even if you only have one of the elements. Or you can kiss the chalice. Or you can take a very tiny sip.

Congratulations on your pregnancy!

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