The Church has adored the Blessed Sacrament from the time of its institution. Saint Ambrose says, “We adore in the mysteries the flesh of Christ, which the Apostles adored.” “No one eats that flesh,” says Saint Augustine, “without first adoring it,” But the outward signs by which the Church has expressed this adoration have not always been the same.

In the Greek liturgies the elevation of the Host takes place shortly before the communion. Ancient authors tell us how at the elevation the curtains which concealed the sanctuary during the rest of the canon were drawn aside and the sacred mysteries presented by the priest for the adoration of the faithful. Formerly in the Latin Mass the Blessed Sacrament was elevated only at the words “omnis honor et gloria” just before the “Pater Noster.” This is now usually known as “the little elevation.” The elevation of host and chalice immediately after consecration was introduced in detestation of the denial of transubstantiation.

MLA Citation

  • Father James J McGovern. “elevation”. Catholic Pocket Dictionary, 1906. CatholicSaints.Info. 3 November 2019. Web. 7 March 2021. <>