The Bread of Life
At the Landing Retirement Community in Algiers, we are blessed to receive the Clarion Herald each week. When I read the article about the need to postpone the reception of first Communion (“When serious illness postponed Communion, St. Ann rallied,” May 19 issue), it reminded me of a story my mother told me.
I was the last of eight and never knew my sister Marybelle Mallinson. She fell ill with the flu outbreak after WWI. In those days, first Communion was received around 12. She was only 7 and in bed at home. It took a dispensation for her to receive hers at 7 on her death bed.
My mother, Mary Hayes Mallinson, said her little girl had great devotion to St. Joseph, and just before her death, she called out “Joseph” and fell back.
Thank the Lord for understanding pastors who are able to make exceptions to the rules. It was later decreed that Communion could be received at a younger age. I was able to witness a liturgy celebrated by Father Ellis de Priest, S.M., in the Byzantine rite and was happy to see babes in arms given a taste of the Eucharist.