Origin of Extraordinary Ministers
When were lay people first allowed to serve as extraordinary ministers of Communion?
In 1969 the Church issued the document Fidei custos, which authorized the laity to help distribute Communion under certain conditions. The document apparently wasn't clear enough, and debate ensued about the required conditions for extraordinary ministers of Communion. In response to the confusion, in 1973 Paul VI authorized the document Immensae caritatis, which clarified the conditions/situations in which such extraordinary ministers would be appropriate and laid down norms for the establishment of the roles.