Eucharistic ministers are men and women (ages 16 and over) who assist with the distribution of communion, both the body and the blood of Christ, at the Sunday and holy day liturgies. This ministry arose after the Second Vatican Council when the number of priests and deacons (the ordinary ministers of communion) grew fewer in number. As well as assisting with the distribution of communion the ministers ensure that the chalice and ciboria/patens are cleaned after the liturgy.