Catholics believe the Eucharist, or Communion, is both a sacrifice and a meal. We believe in the real presence of Jesus, who died for our sins. As we receive Christ's Body and Blood, we also are nourished spiritually and brought closer to God.
Along with the Sacrament of Baptism, First Holy Communion is one of our three sacraments of initiation. It is through these sacraments of initiation that we become full members of the Church. It is during First Holy Communion that we receive the Holy Eucharist for the first time. The Holy Eucharist refers to Christ’s body, blood, soul, and divinity truly present in the consecrated host and wine (now called the Body and Blood of Christ) on the altar. For us as Catholics, there is nothing greater than to receive Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist at Mass. We extend a special greeting to you if you are trying to find out more about First Holy Communion for yourself or your child.
If you are an adult who is seeking more information on First Holy Communion, please consider The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). For information about our RCIA program, please click here.
If you are visiting our site because your child is approaching second grade, or a little older; and you want to know the process for your child to receive First Holy Communion, we say welcome! We know what a busy and exciting time this is for your family, and we want to continue to assist you in raising your child in the faith.
Below are some of the basic requirements to have your child receive First Holy Communion:
At a minimum, your child must:
- Be baptized in the Catholic Church, or another Christian denomination recognized by the Catholic Church. Basically, they must have been baptized with water and “in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
- Have received at least one year of religious education instruction before second grade. If your child is older than second grade, we may require completion of additional instruction that can “catch up” your child’s religious instruction when years were missed. Contact our Director of Religious Education Linda Macios at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Have received the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Instruction for this sacrament takes place at the same time as instruction for First Holy Communion.
To find out more about First Holy Communion for your child, please contact our Office of Religious Education at 973-267-5638.