The Mass Of The Early Christians Using the words of the early Christians themselves -- from many documents and inscriptions -- Aquilina traces the Mass's history from Jesus' lifetime through the 4th century. The Mass stood at the center of the Church's life, evident in the Scriptures as well as the earliest Christian sermons, letters, artwork, tombstones and architecture. Even the pagans bore witness to the Mass in the records of their persecutions.
"Approaching, do not come with your palms stretched flat nor with fingers separated. But making your left hand a seat for your right, and hollowing your palm, receive the Body of Christ, responding Amen. And having with care hallowed your eyes by the touch of the Holy Body, take it, vigilant lest you drop any of it."
~ Cyril, Bishop of Jerusalem, Doctor of the Church, Saint; on the proper technique for receiving Holy Communion in the hand (circa A.D. 347).