The spiritual father decides how often the believer communes

`Father, Saint Paul the Apostle writes: `  For those who eat and drink without discerning the body of Christ eat and drink judgment on themselves.[1]

When does someone commune without being worthy ?

`We should generally approach the Holy Eucharist being aware of our unworthiness. Christ asks from us crushing of the heart and humbleness. When there is something which bothers our conscience, we must fix that. For instance if we had an argument with someone, we must reconcile with that person and only afterwards to commune.

`Father some hesitate to commune although have the blessing from their confessor.

`Nobody decides on his own if he commune or not. If he decides it alone to commune or not the devil will exploit this and will cause him trouble. Many times we think we deserve it but we don`t. Other times according to the law we aren`t indeed but according to the spirit of the Holy Fathers it is needed the divine transfusion for hospitalization and divine comfort because from the deep crushing coming out of repentance it may happen to see the devil coming from the right and throw us into despair.

`Father, how often should someone commune?`

`How often someone must commune and how much someone should fast before the Holy Communion are matters which are not enclosed in a template.

The spiritual father will settle with discernment how often someone would commune and how much he would fast according to his power.

In the same time he will advise him to keep the spiritual fast and refrain from passions according to his spiritual sensitivity, meaning according to how keen he feels his mistake and taking into account the harm which might be brought by the enemy who may fight against a sensitive soul, so that he won`t come to despair. For instance in the sins of the flesh where it is given a canon of 40 days of interdiction to commune, it may be possible to see the devil throwing that soul in the sin after 35 days and if it is given again a canon of 40 days the devil will make that soul run away and in this way he becomes dizzy and despairs. In such cases after the first canon the spiritual father may say: `Listen my son refrain yourself for a week the commune and afterwards he may commune at every Holy Liturgy so that his soul may recover and the devil may go away.

One who lives a real spiritual life will approach very attentively the Holy Sacrament when he feels the Holy Communion as a necessity and not a habitude, but even this should be done with the blessing of his spiritual confessor.

[1] I Cor. 11, 29.

Excerpt from Spiritual endeavour – Pious Paisios the Athonite, Evanghelismos Publishing.

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