15 Dec 2015 Articles Comments (1)

The Story behind "Silent Night" - The famous Christmas carol song

The true story and origin of “Silent Night" began from the city of Salzburg, Austria of a young orphan weaver, Anna. She had no family and lived alone; the trad…

Read more

12 Jun 2016 Articles Comments (1)

Is it actually possible to become an ‘ex-Catholic’?

In the discussion of Fr Lucie-Smith’s excellent blog of a couple of weeks ago – reacting to the Benedict XVI Centre’s latest report (which you can, and really o…

Read more

30 May 2016 USA No comments

British Catholics take to the streets for Corpus Christi processions

Bishops took part in processions in London, Oxford, Sheffield and South Wales Churches around Britain held Blessed Sacrament processions yesterday for the tran…

Read more

28 Oct 2015 News USA Vatican No comments

Catholic Bishops call for bold climate -change deal

Catholic bishops and cardinals from six continents said humankind has a moral and ethical obligation to protect the environment from climate change and urged cl…

Read more

17 Feb 2016 Articles No comments

Truth Demands Charity—Not Mere Tolerance

The words we choose disclose our beliefs. These beliefs can be characterized by reverence, by neutrality, by coarseness. The words "knighted" by a society give …

Read more

20 May 2015 Vatican No comments

"Be joyful shepherds, trust your laity, be concrete", Pope Francis Said to Bishops

Bishops must have "ecclesial sensitivity," being bold in denouncing cultural trends that offend human dignity, but also trusting their lay faithful to fulfill t…

Read more

08 May 2016 United Kingdom Vatican Comments (1)

Catholics and Anglicans are to pray together for the conversion of the nation

Bishops are to ask Catholics to join an Anglican week of prayer The bishops of England and Wales have asked Catholics to join in an Anglican week of prayer for…

Read more

01 Aug 2015 Q&A No comments

Was the Holy Family really poor?

Full Question I've always thought that the Holy Family was poor and that in their poverty and humility Jesus, Mary, and Joseph are models for all families.…

Read more

15 Dec 2015 Middle East - Africa News Vatican No comments

Pope Francis' visit to Central Africa have called Peace back to play again in Bangui, as Muslim youths lay down…

Archbishop Dieudonné Nzapalainga of Central Africa who together with the Islamic heads of Bangui rallied for peace as regards the Central African republic's war…

Read more
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3

How did the Church decided that seven is the age of reason and the age for First Communion?

Full Question

Would you tell me how the Church determined that the age of reason is seven years old and this as the age to receive First Holy Communion?


The Church does not define the age of reason as seven years old. Rather, the Church does not obligate Catholics under the age of seven to observe laws which are merely ecclesiastical. Even once the age of seven is attained, children who do not possess the use of reason generally are not bound. Code of Canon Law states, “Merely ecclesiastical laws bind those who have been baptized in the Catholic Church or received into it, possess the efficient use of reason, and, unless the law expressly provides otherwise, have completed seven years of age” (CIC 11).

In the case of First Communion, there is no age restriction. The Church simply requires that children possess the use of reason, know and understand what the Eucharist is, and are properly disposed. Canon law states,

The administration of the Most Holy Eucharist to children requires that they have sufficient knowledge and careful preparation so that they understand the mystery of Christ according to their capacity and are able to receive the body of Christ with faith and devotion. (CIC 913 §1)

It is primarily the duty of parents and those who take the place of parents, as well as the duty of pastors, to take care that children who have reached the use of reason are prepared properly and, after they have made sacramental confession, are refreshed with this divine food as soon as possible. It is for the pastor to exercise vigilance so that children who have not attained the use of reason or whom he judges are not sufficiently disposed do not approach Holy Communion. (CIC 914)



  1. Jude Reply

    What will the catechsim teachers do to the children above the age of 7 who still don’t know the important of the sacrament they received ?

  2. Eva Corsaro Reply

    i thought this article was going to address children who have not been baptized and a 7 years old. In that case I understood the age of reason to mean the child would receive the three sacraments of initiation at the same time. Please respond. Thank you.

Leave a Reply

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