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Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

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COMMUNION, FREQUENT

The daily reception of Holy Communion, as Pope St. Pius X explained the meaning of "frequent." The conditions required for daily Communion are freedom from conscious, unconfessed mortal sin, and the right intention, namely to honor God, grow in Christian charity, and overcome one's sinful tendencies. In the early Church, daily Communion was common. Later on it fell into disuse, and only in modern times is the practice being gradually restored. The Church's grounds for urging the faithful to communicate daily are based on patristic tradition. "We are bidden in the Lord's Prayer," wrote St. Pius X, "to ask for our daily bread. The holy fathers of the Church all but unanimously teach that by these words must be understood not so much the material bread to support the body as the Eucharistic Bread which should be our daily food" (Sacra Tridentina Synodus, December 20, 1905).

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

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