Follow usTwitterFacebook

Latest

13 Oct 2015 News Vatican No comments

Method of teaching about family can alienate people, synod members say

US bishop spoke about the need to affirm Church teaching while accompanying all Catholics on the path to holiness Just like a family, the Catholic Church sho…

Read more

05 Nov 2014 Q&A Comments (5)

Does the Bible forbid suicide?

Full Question My Protestant friend's wife has attempted suicide twice, and he has come to support her decision to end her life. He says that there is nothi…

Read more

13 Sep 2014 Vatican Comments (1)

War ruins God's creative work, Pope says

Redipuglia, Italy, Sep 13, 2014 / 08:26 am .- Pope Francis warned against the destructive indifference towards our brothers and sisters that arises from ideolog…

Read more

29 Apr 2016 Americas Asia-Pacific Australia Europe Middle East Middle East - Africa News United Kingdom USA Vatican Comments (3)

Breaking News: ISIS' fresh Attack-plot on the Vatican, Militants Arrested

Italian authorities have arrested six suspects who allegedly received orders from ISIS to attack the Vatican and the Israeli embassy in Rome. The arrests mad…

Read more

20 Oct 2014 Articles Comments (1)

The One True God; can there be another?

The death of several martyrs in both Christianity and Judaism for the belief in the One True God and a consequent refusal to bow to other gods who aren't The Lo…

Read more

15 Oct 2015 News USA Comments (2)

Three gay that returned to the Church - Reasons Why they returned

Dan, Rilene and Paul knew that once their stories were out, life would not be the same. “We’ve been advised not to google ourselves,” Rilene said, laughing. …

Read more

21 May 2015 Exhortations Resources No comments

Bishop John Sherrington: failures of end-of-life care show need to recover Christian dignity of death

An English bishop has said that he is appalled by a report that shows a breakdown in end-of-life care in the nation’s health system. Bishop John Sherrington, a…

Read more

09 Sep 2014 Vatican Comments (14)

Cardinals join to defend Church doctrine on divorce, remarriage

Vatican City, Sep 9, 2014 / 03:10 am .- Five members of the College of Cardinals have joint-authored a book defending Church doctrine regarding divorced and rem…

Read more

03 Nov 2014 Q&A Comments (1)

Natural Family Planning - Serious Motives

If, then, there are serious motives to space out births, which derive from the physical or psychological conditions of husband and wife, or from external …

Read more
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
«
»

Cloistered nuns bake Communion wafers for papal Mass in Philly

  • Written by:
  • 1 Reply

A group of cloistered nuns has been working overtime in the kitchen to help Philadelphia Church officials prepare for Pope Francis’ visit, baking 100,000 Communion hosts for his public Mass.

Religious sisters at the suburban Monastery of St. Clare put in extra shifts for about two months to fill the order, which represents a portion of the wafers that will be offered at the outdoor service on Sept. 27. Up to 1.5 million pilgrims are expected to attend.

“We’re very excited,” said Sister Anne Bartol. “It is a very special work for us, and we take very good care — extra care — with how we make them.”

As an enclosed community, the Roman Catholic nuns known as Poor Clares don’t leave the monastery except for medical reasons. They support themselves financially in part by making hosts, also called altar breads, for about 200 customers across the United States and Canada.

The three-hour baking sessions begin around 8:30 a.m. Flour and water are mixed into batter, which is then poured onto a griddle embossed with religious iconography. It bakes for a couple of minutes, emerging as a flat sheet stamped with designs.

After spending time in a humidifier to add moisture — otherwise the bread will shatter when cut — the sheets are placed in a machine that punches out dozens of disc-shaped wafers. The hosts are later inspected, counted, bagged, packaged, and sent.

Sisters usually make about 125,000 wafers per month using their immaculate and affectionately nicknamed ovens Raphael, Maddalena, Vincent, and Benny. (The humidifiers are Archangel and El Rey.) A bag of 500 small hosts costs about $5, plus shipping and handling.

It seems fitting the Poor Clares, an order founded more than 800 years ago, would be asked to help with the pontiff’s visit. St. Clare was the first female follower of St. Francis of Assisi, the namesake of Pope Francis.

Though some nuns dedicate their lives to active ministry and charity work, Poor Clares lead what is known as the contemplative life. The 13 sisters who reside at the monastery in Langhorne, about 20 miles northeast of Philadelphia, devote themselves to prayer.

Sister Jean Therese Rossignol entered the community two decades ago after having “always felt the desire to become a religious sister.” She had previously worked in the business office of a Maine newspaper and later looked into life as a missionary in Africa. While there, she felt called to return to the United States to live a contemplative life.

Yet the Poor Clares aren’t entirely secluded. They conduct business via email, maintain a website, and allow the public to visit their chapel. And the sisters say the Philadelphia archbishop has given them a temporary reprieve from their vow of enclosure, permitting them to attend the Mass where their bread will spiritually nourish the faithful.

“We’re very much looking forward to being there, to seeing (Pope Francis) in person, and to being together with everyone,” Rossignol said.









wpsd_autopost:
1

1 comment

  1. Franklin P. Uroda Reply

    In the Scriptures-and at Mass-Jesus is said to have taken “Bread” not a “Wafer”. Ugh, I dislike that term, especially when Protestants and other non-Roman Catholics refer to our receiving Holy Communion. I guess there’s a long liturgical history why the bread is shaped that way, but it bears no resemblance to what ordinary people refer to as “bread.” Yeah, I know It’s not ordinary Bread. IMO, the exegesis of the text where Jesus tells his disciples to pick up the fragments after He’s fed the multitude, does not refer to “reverence for the Sacred Species,” but an avoidance of waste.

Leave a Reply

  1. most read post
  2. Most Commented
  3. Choose Categories