Message From Bishop Thomas Tobin, DD


A spiritual communion is not the actual physical reception of the Eucharistic Host which we do so when we approach the Communion Rail at Holy Mass. A spiritual communion is a devotion that we can perform on our own whether we are at Mass and not receiving the Eucharist sacramentally or if we are anywhere else. We may make an Act of Spiritual Communion while watching a broadcast of the Mass on the Internet or even in our morning or evening prayers.

As His Holiness Pope Pius XII wrote in Mediator Dei, we may make this pious devotion in any place and at any time so long as we do so with “renewed faith, reverence, humility and in complete trust in the goodness of the divine Redeemer,” and so long as we are “united to Him in the spirit of the most ardent charity.” As a result, through a spiritual communion, we embrace Our Lord as if we receive Him sacramentally.  Only those in the state of grace should make an Act of Spiritual Communion.

Requirements for an Act of Spiritual Communion-

The  enumerated four requirements as set down by the Church for those who wish to make a profitable Act of Spiritual Communion:

1st – Repentance

2nd – Firm belief that Christ died for them.

3rd – Remembrance of the benefits coming from Christ’s Sacrifice

4th – Thankfulness

As a result, to make a truly profitable Act of Spiritual Communion, we must prepare for this Act, say an Act of Spiritual Communion, and then speak to Our Lord with the same spirit as if we had just received Him at Holy Mass. An Act of Spiritual Communion should not be treated as just one of our many daily prayers. It must be treated as an altogether unique prayer just as Holy Communion is the most august of all Sacraments!





Statement of Bishop Thomas Tobin

Regarding the Suspension of

Public Masses in the Diocese of Providence

In light of the growing coronavirus crisis in Rhode Island, in response to the request of public officials, and upon the recommendation of health experts, I hereby direct that the celebration of all public Masses and other liturgical services be suspended in the Diocese of Providence effective Tuesday, March 17, 2020 and continuing until further notice.

The celebration of funerals and weddings may continue, but must be celebrated without Mass using approved liturgical forms. Every effort should be made to limit the size of the congregation to necessary participants only and the health precautions previously announced by the Diocese of Providence and the State of Rhode Island should be carefully followed.

To the extent possible, churches should remain open during the day for personal prayer, devotions and visits to the Blessed Sacrament. Individual confessions may also be heard during this time.

This is an exceedingly difficult and painful decision, but it is necessitated by our commitment to promote the health and well-being of our brothers and sisters, especially the frail and the elderly. That is a moral priority we should all share. May we continue to pray for and support one another in these very trying times, and through the intercession of Saint Patrick, Saint Joseph and Our Lady of Providence, may God be with us.