Since the publication of the “Immensae Caritatis” in 1973, lay people have been allowed to be Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, to assist the Ordinary Ministers (i.e. the Bishop, Priests, and Deacons) in the distribution of the Eucharist in particular circumstances.
The Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion assist with the distribution of Holy Communion during mass, to avoid the mass being unnecessarily prolonged. They also perform the important role of bringing Holy Communion to the sick and homebound.
“Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!’”
– John 20:28
Being an Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion is a humbling call to service, and not a position of authority. It is an invitation to dwell in the mystery of God’s incarnation as man in Jesus Christ, and His true presence in the Bread of Life.