At the end of May, we learned of a planned ban on the Eucharist in a Maryland county. We wasted no time contacting our email list of subscribers asking for them to get involved. They sure did, and with great effect.
Consider that the Volstead Act, which enforced the 18th Amendment ban on alcohol, allowed for certain exemptions, among them being sacramental wine used by Catholic priests. Howard County Maryland Executive Calvin Ball wanted to go beyond Prohibition and ban sacramental wine and the Eucharistic host in response to the coronavirus.
Part II, section 4, of Executive Order 2020-09 was quite specific. “There shall be no consumption of food or beverage of any kind before, during, or after religious services, including food or beverage that would typically be consumed as part of a religious service.”
The Archdiocese of Baltimore, while planning to observe social distancing and discouraging Holy Communion on the tongue, was not in agreement with this executive order.
We alerted our supporters, noting that this was an issue of monumental importance, one that should trigger a strong response from Catholics no matter where they live. Howard County spokesman Scott Peterson said they were open to receiving feedback regarding the executive order and we asked everyone to contact him.
Just as our call to contact Peterson took place, we learned that the order was rescinded. He called Bill Donohue to thank him for being so professional in his call to action. He said he was bombarded with emails protesting the initial decision. Thanks to all who participated.