This is a very special day for you and your children. We want to make it a day when the children have a real appreciation of the great gift they are receiving. The focus needs to be on the receiving of Holy Communion. We want this celebration of their First Holy Communion to be as prayerful and reverent as possible and to show the utmost respect to Jesus whom the children will meet in Holy Communion. For this reason, we ask you to take special care over the following:
Each child can be accompanied by up to four other family members. Each Family group should number no more than FIVE including the child making their First Holy Communion. This is to ensure that there is enough space for everyone to enjoy the occasion safely in the church.
The children MUST NOT carry any accessories with them into the church, so if the girls have gloves, handbags etc., leave them with their responsible adult when they arrive at the church. This applies to all the children. If they have gifts of bibles, missals, cards, rosaries, crucifixes, candles etc, leave them with their responsible adult. The girls cannot wear gloves when receiving Holy Communion and no gifts or presents should be brought into the church.
DRESS CODE: Girls normally wear a white communion dress and boys wear a smart suit or shirt and tie and trousers.
The use of videos/cameras/ flash and recording equipment of any kind is not permitted at any stage during the Mass.
Each First Holy Communion Mass will be filmed by the parish and the final edited version of each Mass will be posted on the Parish website for downloading by each family. There will be no charge for this.
The Parish understands that it is important for families to have photographs of this occasion and for this reason, it permits ONE OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPHER, commissioned by the church to take pictures of each child as he or she receives Holy Communion. There will be no charge for this.
The priests will not be able to attend any parties following the First Holy Communion Masses.
Please arrive 20 minutes before Mass starts. The doors of the church will be locked just before Mass begins and latecomers will not be able to enter. Kindly follow the instructions of the Ushers who are acting on behalf of the Parish Priest. Please wear a mask at all times in the church.
If you wish, each child will be invited to come forward to have their photograph taken with the priest, before Mass begins. This will be taken by the ONE OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPHER.
NO MOBILE PHONES OR CAMERAS SHOULD BE USED IN THE CHURCH AT ANY POINT BY ANYONE ELSE
After the prayer and its response “Behold the Lamb of God…Lord I am not worthy,” the priest holds up the Host to the Congregation and say, “The Body of Christ” to which the people respond “Amen.”
Then the priest holds up the chalice and says, “The Blood of Christ” and again the people respond “Amen.”
People should wait in their pews until instructed to move forward to the priest for Holy Communion by the Ushers, always aware of the regulations on social distancing in an orderly queue.
Each child will come forward for Holy Communion followed by their family members. Communion must be given silently in the hand only, with the communicant standing, and avoiding any physical contact. When the children and others approach the Priest, they should do so with arms at “full stretch” so that there is a good distance between the Priest and the communicant. Their hands, palms upwards, one of top of the other, should be extended as flatly as possible. Children should return with their families, to their place to make their thanksgiving.
At the end of Mass please wait in your places to be directed out of the church at a social distance by the ushers. A collection for the upkeep of the church and parish will be taken on the way out of church.
First Communion Certificates will be available as you leave the church. The Church is locked after the last communicants leave, to allow for cleaning after each celebration of Mass.