The sacrament of the eucharist was entrusted by christ to his Bride the Church, as spiritual nourishment and as a pledge of eternal life. The Church continues to receive this gift with faith and love.
The celebration of the eucharist in the sacrifice of the Mass is the true origin and purpose of the worship shown to the eucharist outside Mass. The principal reason for reserving the sacrament after Mass is to unite, through sacramental communion, the faithful unable to participate in the Mass, especially the sick and the aged, with Christ and the offering of his sacrifice.
In turn, eucharistic reservation, which became customary in order to permit the reception of communion, led to the practice of adoring this sacrament and offering to it the worship of latria that is due to God. This cult of adoration is based on valid and solid principles; furthermore, the Church itself has instituted public and communal forms of this worship.
The rite of Mass has already been revised. The Instruction Eucharisticum Mysterium, published 25 May 1967, has set out the norms, "on the practical arrangement of the worship of this sacrament even after Mass and on its correlation with the proper arrangement of the Mass in conformity with the directives of Vatican Council II and other pertinent documents of the Apostolic See." Now the Congregation for Divine Worship has revised the rites that bear the title Holy Communion and Worship of the Eucharist outside Mass.
These rites, approved by Pope Paul VI, are now published in this edition, which is declared to be the editio typica. They are to replace the rites that appear in the Roman Ritual at the present time. They may be used at once in Latin; they may be used in the vernacular from the day set by the conferences of bishops for their territory, after the conferences have prepared a vernacular version and have obtained the confirmation of the Holy See.
Anything to the contrary not withstanding.