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TORONTO, Canada, December 2, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — The Cardinal Archbishop of Toronto has said that he will “shut down” priests who administer Communion on the tongue in contravention of his coronavirus regulations for the archdiocese.

In a November 13 webinar obtained by LifeSiteNews, Cardinal Thomas Collins emphasized that the archdiocese’s coronavirus procedures must be followed diligently. This includes the masked minister of Communion standing six feet away from the masked recipient and putting the Host “vertically” into the recipient’s hand. 

“But we cannot have Communion on the tongue,” Collins said. 

“We can’t. And we have to be effective in our protocol.” 

Moments afterwards Collins said that he would “shut down” any priests that didn’t comply with the archdiocese’s coronavirus regulations.

“I’ve dealt with cases, and I said to a priest, ‘I will shut you down. I will shut you down in a heartbeat!’” he said. 

“If we have a place, one of our parishes, if we have one parish where they’re loosey-goosey with the protocol…I will shut you down! Because I cannot have a parish, one parish or any parish, mess it up for us all, endanger the whole diocese, every church in the province for that matter.” 

Collins had noted that one of the issues medical authorities worry about in connection with Catholic worship is the distribution of Holy Communion. He said he had “gone through the whole thing” with the doctors. 

“We have six feet apart, the mask is on, [the Host administered] vertically in the hand, and so on,” he said. 

The cardinal stated that he was “very conscious, and sensitive to, and sad about” people who “for very good spiritual reasons do not want to touch the Host.” 

“I see the point,” he said. 

“It may well be that it has contributed to a lack of reverence for the Blessed Sacrament. I see that’s a concern. […] This is not a frivolous thought; it’s a serious thought.”

However, Collins emphasized that Holy Communion must be placed in the hand, not on the tongue, because “the point is that we don’t put hands around mouths and noses.”

“That’s where the virus comes from,” he said. “That’s what they tell us. And the saliva, and so on.”

Some of the faithful have come up with creative ways to receive the Blessed Sacrament without touching it. One woman has been receiving the Host with the aid of a little plate. Two other Catholics have been receiving the Host on (cloth) purifiers before consuming them. 

“I don’t think that is a problem, so there is a way,” Collins said.

The Cardinal added that he was checking this “alternative method” of receiving Communion with doctors, but that he thought it would be all right. 

Apparently, a mask-less Catholic priest placing the Host on the tongue of a communicant was enough to spark an emergency meeting of Ontario’s “Worship Safe” committee. The incident had been witnessed by a government inspector, and the parish was, in Collins’ words, “slapped with a compliance order.” Although it was not said to have happened in the Toronto archdiocese, Collins was called to the meeting. 

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PETITION UPDATE (2/25/2021)

Not only has the federal Senate in Canada not come to the aid of vulnerable people threatened by the passage of Euthanasia Bill C-7, they have actually voted to make matters worse by EXPANDING provision of euthanasia beyond what C-7 had originally intended.

The bill will now go back to Parliament, where the Senate's amendments can be accepted or rejected.

Please READ LifeSiteNews' analysis of the Trudeau Liberals' latest salvo in their all-out push to expand euthanasia in Canada: https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/canada-senate-passes-euthanasia-bill-expanding-categories-of-the-killable

Then, please SIGN and SHARE this petition. Thank you.

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PETITION UPDATE (12/9/2020)

On December 3, 2020, the Concurrence at report stage of Bill C-7 passed with 213 yeas and 103 nays, with a total of 316 votes.

Bill C-7 would expand already existing provisions for assisted suicide. It would "repeal the provision that requires a person’s natural death be reasonably foreseeable."

The Bill is currently in its Third Reading in the House of Commons and will move on to the Senate if it passes.

We are obliged to help people who are suffering, especially the vulnerable, and that’s why we must oppose Bill C-7.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition. Then, please contact your MP and tell them to vote NO on Bill C-7. You can find your MP and their contact information HERE.

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We are obliged to help people who are suffering, not kill them.

But, that's exactly what the existing euthanasia law - the so-called "medical assistance in dying (MAiD)" provision - allows.

And, right now, the Trudeau Liberals are pushing for making death even more accessible to our most vulnerable citizens by tabling Bill C-7 in Parliament.

Please SIGN this petition and call for Canada's Members of Parliament to REJECT more euthanasia in Bill C-7, and, instead, provide for more homecare, palliative care, and mental health support.

Bill C-7 would expand existing provisions for assisted-suicide by removing the requirement that a person's natural death be reasonably foreseeable to qualify for MAiD.

Simply put: under C-7, people who are not terminally ill can be killed by MAiD!

This is outrageous, as it puts people with disabilities, the elderly, the young, and those who cannot consent (if they had already agreed to MAiD) at serious risk.

Please CLICK HERE to learn more about Bill C-7 and how it would put those vulnerable people more at risk, and allow for more death and more killing.

Then, please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition.

Our elected Members of Parliament should be discussing how to help our disabled, elderly and young people with greater provision for homecare, palliative care, and mental health support, rather than encouraging our most vulnerable to kill themselves with our government's help and endorsement.

Nothing could be more foul and malicious.

And, while it's true that Trudeau's Minister of Justice is sponsoring this atrocious Bill, 40 Conservative Party politicians supported him in the vote on the Bill's Second Reading in late October.

We list these 40 Conservative MPs below, so that, after signing this petition, you can politely and respectfully contact them to let them know you want them to REJECT the expansion of MAiD (which, again, will mean more death and more killing), and to EMBRACE life-affirming provisions, like more funding for homecare, palliative care, and mental health support for our most vulnerable citizens.

Thank you!

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

'People with disabilities oppose Canada’s proposed expansion of euthanasia law'https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/people-with-disabilities-oppose-canadas-proposed-expansion-of-euthanasia-law

Canada's House of Parliament Info on Bill C-7https://www.parl.ca/LegisInfo/BillDetails.aspx?Language=en&Mode=1&billId=10875380&View=5

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto's 'Help the Living' initiative - https://www.helptheliving.ca/

**Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

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List of 40 Conservatives who voted FOR C-7 (Expansion of Euthanasia) on the Bill's Second Reading:

SCOTT AITCHISON (Parry Sound—Muskoka) - Telephone: 613-944-7740; Email: [email protected]

DAN ALBAS (Central Okanagan—Similkameen—Nicola) - Telephone: 613-995-1702; Email: [email protected]

LEONA ALLESLEV (Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill) - Telephone: 613-992-0700; Email: [email protected]

MEL ARNOLD (North Okanagan—Shuswap) - Telephone: 613-995-9095; Email: [email protected]

TONY BALDINELLI (Niagara Falls) - Telephone: 613-995-1547; Email: [email protected]

JOHN BARLOW (Foothills) - Telephone: 613-995-8471; Email: [email protected]

LUC BERTHOLD (Mégantic—L'Érable) - Telephone: 613-995-1377; Email: [email protected]

SCOT DAVIDSON (York—Simcoe) - Telephone: 613-996-7752; Email: [email protected]

GÉRARD DELTELL (Louis-Saint-Laurent) - Telephone: 613-996-4151; Email: [email protected]

CHRIS D'ENTREMONT (West Nova) - Telephone: 613-995-5711; Email: [email protected]

TODD DOHERTY (Cariboo—Prince George) - Telephone: 613-995-6704; Email: [email protected]

TERRY DOWDALL (Simcoe—Grey) - Telephone: 613-992-4224; Email: [email protected]

ERIC DUNCAN (Stormont—Dundas—South Glengarry) - Telephone: 613-992-2521; Email: [email protected]

KERRY-LYNNE D. FINDLAY (South Surrey—White Rock) - Telephone: 613-947-4497; Email: [email protected]

DIANE FINLEY (Haldimand—Norfolk) - Telephone: 613-996-4974; Email: [email protected]

BERNARD GÉNÉREUX (Montmagny—L'Islet—Kamouraska—Rivière-du-Loup) - Telephone: 613-995-0265; Email: [email protected]

JOËL GODIN (Portneuf—Jacques-Cartier) - Telephone: 613-992-2798; Email: [email protected]

JACQUES GOURDE (Lévis—Lotbinière) - Telephone: 613-992-2639; Email: [email protected]

TRACY GRAY (Kelowna—Lake Country) - Telephone: 613-992-7006; Email: [email protected]

PAT KELLY (Calgary Rocky Ridge) - Telephone: 613-992-0826; Email: [email protected]

PETER KENT (Thornhill) - Telephone: 613-992-0253; Email: [email protected]

RON LIEPERT (Calgary Signal Hill) - Telephone: 613-992-3066; Email: [email protected]

LARRY MAGUIRE (Brandon—Souris) - Telephone: 613-995-9372; Email: [email protected]

RICHARD MARTEL (Chicoutimi—Le Fjord) - Telephone: 613-992-7207; Email: [email protected]

DAN MAZIER (Dauphin—Swan River—Neepawa) - Telephone: 613-992-3176; Email: Dan.Ma[email protected]

GREG MCLEAN (Calgary Centre) - Telephone: 613-995-1561; Email: [email protected]

CATHY MCLEOD (Kamloops—Thompson—Cariboo) - Telephone: 613-995-6931; Email: [email protected]

ERIC MELILLO (Kenora) - Telephone: 613-996-1161; Email: [email protected]

MARTY MORANTZ (Charleswood—St. James—Assiniboia—Headingley) - Telephone: 613-995-5609; Email: [email protected]

ROB MORRISON (Kootenay—Columbia) - Telephone: 613-995-7246; Email: [email protected]

PIERRE PAUL-HUS (Charlesbourg—Haute-Saint-Charles) - Telephone: 613-995-8857; Email: [email protected]

ALAIN RAYES (Richmond—Arthabaska) - Telephone: 613-995-1554; Email: [email protected]

SCOTT REID (Lanark—Frontenac—Kingston) - Telephone: 613-947-2277; Email: [email protected]

MICHELLE REMPEL GARNER (Calgary Nose Hill) - Telephone: 613-992-4275; Email: [email protected]

ALEX RUFF (Bruce—Grey—Owen Sound) - Telephone: 613-996-5191; Email: [email protected]

BOB SAROYA (Markham—Unionville) - Telephone: 613-992-1178; Email: [email protected]

DOUG SHIPLEY (Barrie—Springwater—Oro-Medonte) - Telephone: 613-992-0718; Email: [email protected]

BRUCE STANTON (Simcoe North) - Telephone: 613-992-6582; Email: [email protected]

KAREN VECCHIO (Elgin—Middlesex—London) - Telephone: 613-990-7769; Email: [email protected]

LEN WEBBER (Calgary Confederation) - Telephone: 613-996-2756; Email: [email protected]

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The webinar, whose existence was first made public by the Vox Cantoris blog, it is clear that he has been under pressure from civil authorities to prove that keeping Catholic churches open is safe and that the archdiocesan hygienic measures meant to combat the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus are “effective” and “enforceable.”

Since delivering the webinar Collins has cancelled public Masses in the Toronto & Peel Region after government lockdown regulations said there could be no more than 10 people inside a church at one time.

Not all doctors believe that Communion in the hand, a practice dating to the 1960s, is in fact safer than receiving the Blessed Sacrament directly on the tongue. Twenty-seven Austrian doctors wrote a letter this summer asking their country’s Bishops’ Conference to lift the de facto ban on receiving Holy Communion on the tongue, explaining that the historic practice is safer than receiving on the hand. In October, a number of Polish doctors wrote a similar letter to the Polish Bishops’ Conference. 

Bishop Athanasius Schneider has argued that “Communion in the mouth is certainly less dangerous and more hygienic compared to Communion in the hand.”

“From a hygienic point of view, the hand carries a huge amount of bacteria,” Schneider said. 

“Many pathogens are transmitted through the hands. Whether by shaking other people’s hands or frequently touching objects, such as door handles or handrails and grab bars in public transport, germs can quickly pass from hand to hand; and with these unhygienic hands and fingers people then touch often their nose and mouth,” he continued. 

“Also, germs can sometimes survive on the surface of the touched objects for days. According to a 2006 study, published in the journal ‘BMC Infectious Diseases’, influenza viruses and similar viruses can persist on inanimate surfaces, such as e.g. door handles or handrails and handles in transport and public buildings for a few days.”  

He described any ban on Communion in the mouth as “unfounded compared to the great health risks of Communion in the hand in the time of a pandemic.”

According to the instruction Redemptionis Sacramentum (2004), Catholics have the right to receive the Blessed Sacrament kneeling and on the tongue. The instruction makes it clear that administering the Host on the tongue is the norm, and receiving the Host on the hand is exceptional and can carry “a risk of profanation”:

“…[I]t is not licit to deny Holy Communion to any of Christ’s faithful solely on the grounds, for example, that the person wishes to receive the Eucharist kneeling or standing,” the instruction reads.

“Although each of the faithful always has the right to receive Holy Communion on the tongue, at his choice, if any communicant should wish to receive the Sacrament in the hand, in areas where the Bishops’ Conference with the recognitioof the Apostolic See has given permission, the sacred host is to be administered to him or her. However, special care should be taken to ensure that the host is consumed by the communicant in the presence of the minister, so that no one goes away carrying the Eucharistic species in his hand. If there is a risk of profanation, then Holy Communion should not be given in the hand to the faithful.” (RS 91-92).

Contacted by LifeSiteNews, aspokesman for the Archdiocese of Toronto stated: “We will use official archdiocesan communication vehicles to convey public statements and accurate information regarding the work of the Archdiocese of Toronto and our ongoing efforts during this time of pandemic.”

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