Wednesday, November 18, 2015

RECEIVING HOLY COMMUNION AS PRECIOUS BLOOD FROM THE CHALICE IS NOT INTRINSIC FOR THE LAITY


There are many good reasons why the laity should be allowed to receive Holy Communion under the form of the Precious Blood at Mass but saying that it is intrinsic to their celebration of the Mass isn't one of them.

Many say that Jesus at the Last Supper mandated that everyone receive Holy Communion under the two forms that Jesus institutes. "Take this ALL of you and drink from it...."

But to whom is Jesus speaking at the Last Supper and just how fundamentalistic or literalistic should we become in interpreting those words in the context of the Last Supper? We know that Pope Francis despises fundamentalists. So all of us should be weary of liturgical fundamentalists as they have degraded the liturgy quite a bit in the last 50 years or so.

Jesus is speaking to the first bishops/priests of the Church at the Last Supper. He institutes both sacraments in the course of the evening of Holy Thursday. Thus it is intrinsic to the sacrificial aspect of the Catholic priesthood and the Holy Eucharist that the priest celebrating the Mass on behalf of the entire Church consume the Holocaust which is Jesus Christ. For the validity of the Mass, the priest must consume both the Host and the Precious Blood and those must be consecrated at the Mass being celebrated. In other words, the celebrant is not allowed to receive Holy Communion from the tabernacle.

Not so for the laity. In fact it is not required for the validity of the Mass that any laity receive Holy Communion although it is certainly recommended, highly encouraged and to be available for those who are in a state of grace.  But it is not mandated for validity. In fact the laity may receive Holy Communion consecrated at another Mass, meaning they receive the Host from the tabernacle not consecrated at the Mass at which they receive.

And the Precious Blood is not mandated to the laity but it  is for those priests who celebrate or concelebrate the Mass.

The Roman Missal allows the Precious Blood to be distributed to the laity if the number of laity present does not preclude it and for special liturgical celebrations. The GIRM does not foresee the laity receiving Holy Communion from the chalice at every single Mass in the normative Latin Rite.

The American adaptation of the Roman Missal suggests three primary ways: 

1. from the common chalice (which can also communicate contagious diseases and thus is not hygienic and in many places is not allowed during times of contagion--recognized as dangerous by our previous bishop and the NCCB during the H1N1 epidemic a few years back).

2. By intinction (the minister intincts the Host into the Precious Blood)

3. Or by straw or spoon (which is not a part of the Western Church's method of offering the Precious Blood to the laity, but an Eastern Rite/Eastern Orthodox tradition).

I believe the new Anglican Ordinariate Roman Missal requires the Precious Blood for the laity as it is also required in the Eastern Rite of the Church. Intinction I believe is the preferred method. However if  the common chalice is offered the minister must hold the chalice while the communicant drinks, unlike the practice of most Latin Rite parishes where the minister actually hands the chalice over to the communicant.Also in the Anglican Ordinariate, if the communicant receives the Precious Host in their hands, they do it properly (unlike most Latin Rite Catholics) by bringing the host in the palm of their throne-like hands to the mouth and licking the palm to be sure all particles are consumed!

70 comments:

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Doorknobs communicate contagious disease, too, even when they are not licked. There's no more danger in the common cup.

Shaking hands is a vector for disease, so is sneezing and/or coughing. Are we going to forbid sneezers and coughers during times of contagion? And by the way, sneezing and coughing aren't limited to these "times of contagion," are they?

Citing "contagion" as a reason for disallowing the common cup is a specious argument.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Did you or did you not discontinue the use of the chalice and the handshake of peace when Bishop Boland told all parishes to do so because of the H1N1 Virus several years back? I rest my case!

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Your case rests on your own phobia. Rest all you want, it doesn't change the facts.

Is the reception of communion under either form by the laity "intrinsic" to the liturgy? If not, what might be the ramifications?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Sidestepping the actual issue or question I posed: Did you or did you not discontinue the common chalice and handshake of peace as requested by our bishop during the H1N1 epidemic? Easy to answer and we are all waiting for it.

TJM said...

Father McDonald you are wasting your breath trying to reason with left-wing loons. They simply live in an alternate planet of reality. I NEVER take the precious blood for health reasons and I do not shake peoples' hands because it is a silly, faux gesture, designed to make lefties feel good about themselves.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Quite honestly, I don't recall if we suspended the common cup. I suspect we did, but I would not swear to it. We didn't suspend the Sign of Peace.

Now, is the reception of communion under either form by the laity "intrinsic" to the liturgy? If not, what might be the ramifications?

gob said...

Fr. Kavanaugh followed the request of his Bishop. That's what a priest should do. That makes him a "left wing loon" to TJM. Following TJM's lead, are you a germaphobic, right wing wacko? I think it would be disrespectful of me to say that.
(Now tell me about how you're not "right wing".)

Flavius Hesychius said...

Fr. McDonald, you realise your interpretation of that scripture is totally outside of any patristic view? Surely you realise that withholding the Chalice from the laity is a medieval Latin innovation, right?

In fact, how do you reconcile what you've written with John 6:54 (Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you.)?

You condemn 'literalism'—because Francis does—but 'literalism' is exactly how one comes to the conclusion that the Eucharist is the Body and Blood of Christ!

Even if we accept your initial premise, it doesn't follow that Christ would tell everyone, and not just the apostles, that both Body and Blood are necessary.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Are you saying, Flav. that when a Catholic lay person does not receive from the chalice that he is not receiving the Blood of Christ? Are you teaching on my blog that the Bread once consecrated is only the Body of the Christ (His Flesh) and the Wine only becomes the Blood of Christ in a static dead sense? Do you not believe what the Church has always taught that we are receiving the Risen Lord, whole and complete under either form, thus we are receiving the Body and Blood of Christ, the Risen Lord Himself in a palatable way?

I think the Council of Trent would call your heresy anathema.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Is the reception of communion under either form by the laity "intrinsic" to the liturgy?

If not, what might be the ramifications?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

It is not intrinsic to the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass for the laity to receive Holy Communion. However, it is important that they do and as frequently as possible if they are in a state of grace. It is intrinsic, and thus required that the priest-celebrant receive what he consecrates, both the Consecrated Bread and Wine in order to complete the sacrifice. In fact if the priest were to die prior to receiving but after the consecration, another priest is mandated to complete the sacrifice.

This is not true of any lay person or deacon.

Vatican II opened the door to the laity to receive Holy Communion under both forms but in a limited way. Here we are speaking of a value and not a need.

This is what the American Adaptation of the Girm requires in this situation:

"..The bishop may lay down norms for the distribution of Communion under both kinds for his dioces with must be observed...it is allowed whenever it seems appropriate provided that the faithful have been well instructed and there is no danger of the profanation of the Sacrament or that the rite would be difficult to carry out on account of the number of participants or for some other reason. (Such as hygiene concerns and epidemic, like H1N1)."

"In practice, the need to avoid obscuring the role of the priest and deacon as the ordinary ministers of Holy Communion by an excessive use of EMs might in some circumstances constitute a reason either for limiting the distribution of Holy Communion under both species or for using intinction instead of distributing the Precious Blood from the chalice. "

Now I would ask former PI to expound on what I quote from the American Adaptation of the GIRM and how it supports the fact that Holy Communion under both kinds is not intrinsic to the laity's participation in the Mass.

Marc said...

Father, since Flavius is an Orthodox Catholic and not a Roman Catholic, it follows that he does not recognize the Council of Trent as authoritative and, as a result, couldn't care less whether it anathematizes the view he is espousing (which is, as he says, the view of the Fathers). According to the Orthodox Church, there are have been nine ecumenical councils, the last of which took place in Constantinople in the 14th Century -- the Fifth Council of Constantinople.

The manner of reception of Communion by the laity is a point of divergence that maintains the schism of the Roman Church from the Orthodox Church. The idea that only the priest receives Communion is antithetical to the nature of the liturgy as it is understood by the Orthodox Church.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Expounding - It seem that frequent distribution of Communion under both kinds, even at all masses as we do here, is appropriate. I don't think that having Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion assist in the distribution obscures the role of the priest and deacon. The laity are smart enough to know who is who, and whose role is whose role.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

How do you, who have a phobia about germs, justify the suggestion that the proper way to receive communion in the hand to is complete the process by LICKING THE PALMS OF THE HANDS to be sure all the particles are consumed.

These palm lickers then return to their pews and, with freshly licked palms, pick up hymnals or other devotional aids, place their freshly licked palms on the pew surfaces, raise or lower the kneeler with freshly licked hands, and then shake YOUR hand as they depart from the church, pressing their still-moist freshly licked palm in direct contact with yours and dozens of other unsuspecting, yet freshly licked palms.

What are you trying to do, kill off your entire congregation?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc, of course it is the Orthodox Church that is in schism, not all Eastern Church's went into schism and many that did returned to the full communion of the Church and union with the See of Peter two and three centuries later. However, the Maronites are notable for never having gone into Schism, exemplary among the Churches of the East.

It is sad too that the Orthodox are muted in time and do not recognize the other ecumenical councils which all the more points to their lack of full communion with the true Church!

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

So Former PI you are in complete defiance of the new GIRM of 2002 as it concerns what the American Bishops promulgated for it?

Hopefully, they have washed their hands prior to doing this.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

What am I supposed to be in defiance of exactly?

Flavius Hesychius said...

However, the Maronites are notable for never having gone into Schism, exemplary among the Churches of the East.

Wrong.

"There are some heretics who, rejecting the Fifth and Sixth Councils, nevertheless contend against the Jacobites. The latter treat them as men without sense, because, while accepting the Fourth Council, they try to reject the next two. Such are the Maronites, whose monastery is situated in the very mountains of Syria."--St. Germanus of Constantinople

And, it should be noted, this is from a Catholic apologist's blog.

Flavius Hesychius said...

Just to add, from a Maronite poster on a forum:

From Popes calling Maronites "heretics" and "former heretics" respectively, to the resistance to Rome some Maronite Patriarchs have shown since communion began, it is dishonest for an individual to hold on to the perpetual communion theory of the Maronites.

The relevant thread may be found here

Marc said...

Father, why would the Orthodox recognize councils held by the Roman Catholics? That doesn't make any sense. The Roman Catholics don't recognize the Orthodox councils after the Seventh (and also don't recognize certain aspects of the earlier councils either).

Also, you are factually incorrect in your assertion that the Orthodox are "muted in time." In fact, the synods meet in accordance with the canons, and there is a council of all the churches scheduled to happen next year. There have been major Orthodox councils as recently as the 19th century that condemned the errors that had arise (at that time, the Church condemned phyletism).

Flavius Hesychius said...

I didn't want to start an Orthodox/Catholic flame war lol. I once agreed with the Fr.M's positions here, but my views have changed on the matter. I do not think Christ intended for the chalice to be withheld from the laity, and I have found most defences of the practice to be circular. As much as I hate to admit it, V2 actually did something right.

As for Fr.M's characterisation of my beliefs regarding the Eucharist: all I know is what Christ said. That Trent would find that heretical is Trent's problem, not mine.

Matthew LaHood said...

"I don't think that having Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion assist in the distribution obscures the role of the priest and deacon. The laity are smart enough to know who is who, and whose role is whose role."

I don't think the issue is that people aren't sure who the priest is, its that the sloppy treatment of something that Catholics MUST believe is the true, body, blood, soul, and divinity of Christ is degraded and often times lost when it is handled irreverently. I think if we want to save to grow the church and spread the faith we have to start with growing our love of the true presence. As the mass is the highest form of prayer, and God is truly present with us in the Eucharist. Actions speak louder than words.

http://www.uscatholic.org/blog/201305/knowing-believing-and-sometimes-not-knowing-believing-too-27323

Marc said...

I am engaging in the flame war because there are legitimate arguments to be had about the schism between Rome and the Orthodox, but Fr. McDonald's arguments are not good ones. Yet, they are commonly raised. The idea that the Orthodox are stuck in time and that some eastern groups stuck with Rome are not good arguments.

One could easily ask why it is that every other patriarchate in existence at the time stayed together while Rome walked away. And the bit about ecumenical councils is so absurd that it is nearly impossible to formulate a response.

It would appear that the Roman ecumenical movement has failed if this is the level of apologetics that its priests apply to the Orthodox: "Trent says that what you're saying is anathema."

George said...

"The latter treat them as men without sense, because, while accepting the Fourth Council, they try to reject the next two. Such are the Maronites, whose monastery is situated in the very mountains of Syria."--St. Germanus of Constantinople"

So it only took the Maronites until after the fourth Council to reject subsequent ones, while it took the rest of the Orthodox to "catch up" and wait until after after the Seventh to reject subsequent councils.

As with the Protestant Reformation, the Catholic Church (at least in some of her members) was not without having contributed in some way to what transpired in the schism of the Orthodox. In both cases, whatever the legitimacy of the grievances and concerns, things just went to far . it could certainly be said that both sides lost.


"Also, you are factually incorrect in your assertion that the Orthodox are 'muted in time.' "

Marc, there are those who characterize the Orthodox this way and who do so because that Church is still situated primarily in those areas of the world where it was predominant at the time of the Schism. It is due to the Catholic Church and her missionaries that there exists a strong, vibrant and growing Christianity in large parts of Africa and Asia. It is the Roman Catholic Church that has spread the True faith far and wide around the globe. At the time of the Schism, there was not a single Catholic Church in North, or Central or South America, nor in East Asia or in Africa (with the exception of Egypt and Ethiopia). The Church now has a large footprint on all those continents.


Flavius Hesychius said...

I'd think the 'stuck in time' argument would be one to be avoided. Scott Hahn made a similar argument in Rome Sweet Home that 'the Orthodox Church has been theologically stagnant since the 8th century'. That's not a compelling argument.

Marc said...

George, you are ill-informed about the missionary efforts of the Orthodox Church. Here is an example. And Here is another example. And there is also a little place called Russia.

George said...



Marc:
I wasn't making the assertion that there is not, or there has not been, missionary activity on the part of the Orthodox, only that it does not compare to that of the Catholic church since the Schism.

Half the Orthodox in the world reside in just one country-Russia. There are 200 million Orthodox in the world compared to almost 1.3 billion Catholics.

The Orthodox have beautiful churches and beautiful liturgies but their missionaries efforts and effectiveness of such pale in comparison to what the Catholic Church has accomplished in that area over the last five centuries.

Flavius Hesychius said...

So it only took the Maronites until after the fourth Council to reject subsequent ones, while it took the rest of the Orthodox to "catch up" and wait until after after the Seventh to reject subsequent councils.

Way to miss the point.

It is the Roman Catholic Church that has spread the True faith far and wide around the globe.

No, it was the armies and colonists of Spain, Portugal, and France. I'd go as far as to call this statement blasphemy, since it implies that God sanctioned the widespread genocide of natives. One wonders why Spain felt the need to establish the Inquisition in Mexico, since God was oh-so clearly on their side anyway.

And there were no Catholics in Ethiopia or Egypt 'at the time of the schism'—they'd long since taken to Miaphysitism.

I'm fairly certain I've addressed the whole 'why Orthodoxy is still mostly in Eastern Europe', but I guess you either ignored it or felt it was too inconvenient to respond. Your only response their was not really relevant to what I had posted there. Oh well.

DJR said...

Flavius Hesychius said... Fr. McDonald, you realise your interpretation of that scripture is totally outside of any patristic view? Surely you realise that withholding the Chalice from the laity is a medieval Latin innovation, right?

In fact, how do you reconcile what you've written with John 6:54 (Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you.)?

You condemn 'literalism'—because Francis does—but 'literalism' is exactly how one comes to the conclusion that the Eucharist is the Body and Blood of Christ!

Even if we accept your initial premise, it doesn't follow that Christ would tell everyone, and not just the apostles, that both Body and Blood are necessary.


When a Catholic of the Roman Rite receives only the Host in communicating, he/she is receiving both the body and blood of Christ, so, although it is a matter of changeable discipline, there is no necessity to drink from the chalice to receive both the body and the blood of Christ.

Likewise, there are Catholics who receive Holy Communion only by drinking from the chalice. By doing so, they receive both the body and the blood of Christ.

Sacred Scripture is clear on this point.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

The Orthodox like Protestants are nationalistic and congregationalistic. Take Macon, there are two Orthodox Church and each might have no more than 50 to 70 families and they do not cooperate with one another at all. One is Russian the other is Greek.

Because of its nationalistic and governmental ties, the Russian Orthodox Church during Communism was very corrupt and in league with the repressive regime.

After the Reformation, a nation took on the religious identity of the monarch.

No thanks, I'll stick with the universalism of Catholicism the fullness of the true Church who as George states eloquently is not afraid to invite others into her fold and has been quite active in her missionary activities compared to the fragmented Orthodox who prefer ethnic identity to universal identity.

Flavius Hesychius said...

Take Macon, there are two Orthodox Church and each might have no more than 50 to 70 families and they do not cooperate with one another at all. One is Russian the other is Greek.

Father, are you secretly a parishioner at one or both of these parishes? No? You clearly have no idea what you're talking about. St. Innocent is American (OCA), not Russian. Are you intentionally lying, in public? Because that's exactly what you've done when you say they do not cooperate with one another at all. St. Innocent's choir (to which I belong) just sang at a wedding at Holy Cross!

So just what the hell are you talking about?

After the Reformation, a nation took on the religious identity of the monarch.

I don't know why this is here. The Reformation had zero effect on Orthodox lands.

No thanks, I'll stick with the universalism of Catholicism the fullness of the true Church who as George states eloquently is not afraid to invite others into her fold and has been quite active in her missionary activities compared to the fragmented Orthodox who prefer ethnic identity to universal identity.

Neither the Antiochians or the OCA 'prefer ethnic identity'. Our 'universal identity' is in our common faith. That some parishes use Greek, Slavonic, or English does not change this fact. Or, does the fact St. Peter Claver have a Spanish Mass mean they belong to a different Church with a different creed?


(PS—some large cities have Eastern Catholic Churches of different ethnicities. I guess you have a problem with them too, eh?)

Flavius Hesychius said...

Sacred Scripture is clear on this point.

Please explain this further. The existence of this thread means something is obviously not 'clear on this point'.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Regardless, Flav, historians even atheists know from authentic historical analysis that the East broke away from the Universal Church, the Catholic Church which has as her temporal head the pope,the Bishop of Rome, the successor of St. Peter. For the orthodox to say Rome broke from them is pure hyperbolic nonsense and propaganda that would make the communists blush.

The true Church is the Church of the Pope. Orthodox are in fuller communion with the true Church due to their valid sacraments although they hedge on Marriage allow a second "adulterous" marriage. But why be in fuller communion when you can be in fullest communion with the Eastern Rite of the Church which acknowledged shortly after the Great Schism that they were in schism not the Church of Rome and thus they by God's grace returned to the Full Communion of the True Church?

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Fr. McDonald said: "So Former PI you are in complete defiance of the new GIRM of 2002 as it concerns what the American Bishops promulgated for it?"

I asked: "What am I supposed to be in defiance of exactly?"

Now, I am not expecting much of a reply. If one comes it will be something like "That's your homework, go look it up for yourself."

Or it will sound like Fr. McDonald's response to Flav when the letter pointed you that Fr. McDonald's statement that the two Orthodox Churches in Macon don't cooperate. Flav replied, "St. Innocent's choir (to which I belong) just sang at a wedding at Holy Cross!"

Fr. McDonald's response: "Regardless..."

It's not good form to make up false claims about The Orthodox Churches, international or local, or anyone else. More than that, it's just wrong.



Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Your original comment former PI is that the laity receiving the Body and Blood of Christ under the form of the consecrated Wine, the Most Precious Blood (but also Body too) is intrinsic to the Mass--it isn't but you imply it is.

Also the GIRM indicates that we don't need a proliferation of EMC's to distribute the Chalice, that intinction is a valid way and it only needs one priest or deacon to offer both to the Laity.

You haven't responded to that nor to the fact that you discontinued the chalice when there was the H1N1 epidemic, obeying the bishop in this regard but not obeying him with discontinuing the handshake of peace. You need to explain.

Marc said...

I agree with Fr. Kavanaugh that it is bad form to make up false claims about the Orthodox Churches. It would seem that every "argument" put forth by Fr. McDonald about the Orthodox Church in this thread is based on a false claim. The historical claims made are rather easily refuted or, at least, questioned when one looks at the radically different understanding of the Roman episcopacy in the fathers and as it later developed after the Gregorian reforms with the influence of political and military force and using (what turned out to be) forged documents to support the papal claims.

An unbiased view of the history tends to show that it was the Roman Church that changed while the remainder of the Church stayed rather constant. When the rest of the Church refused to go along with the Roman Church's innovations, a split became evident. In light of the recent past and current events, it should come as no surprise that the Roman Church would engage in certain innovations that leave those who do not think that such innovations are tolerable behind while Rome presses forward.

Let's take another historic point, though. At the reunion councils in the 14th century, the issue of second marriages was taken up. And the Roman Church agreed with the Greeks that the practice was based in the tradition and, therefore, allowable. There is a healthy amount of patristic support for the Orthodox practice of economy in this realm. There is no patristic support for the Roman innovation of annulments, though. And, at any rate, Rome agreed to the Greek practice at the reunion councils, so clearly Rome has changed the stance on this issue and not the Orthodox.

CFr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Allan, I did not imply anything. Receiving communion by the laity under either form, Sacred Host or Precious Blood, is NOT intrinsic to the mass. When the priest consumes the Body and Blood of Jesus, the sacrifice is complete. But we are not constrained from giving communion to the laity simply because doing so is not "intrinsic" to the mass. There are dozens of overwhelming reasons why it is salutary, even necessary, for the faithful to receive communion.

There are also good reasons for communion under both kinds: "Holy Communion has a fuller form as a sign when it takes place under both kinds. For in this form the sign of the Eucharistic banquet is more clearly evident and clearer expression is given to the divine will by which the new and eternal Covenant is ratified in the Blood of the Lord, as also the connection between the Eucharistic banquet and the eschatological banquet in the Kingdom of the Father." (Norms for the Distribution and Reception of Holy Communion under Both Kinds in the Dioceses of the United States of America, n 20)

I never said word one about intinction. I will now. It's valid, but, in my opinion, not the desirable way to distribute Holy Communion.

The GIRM says the Bishop lays down the norms for communion under both species for his diocese. I follow those norms.

The GIRM says that communion under both kinds is "allowed when it seems appropriate." I follow that as well. The people are instructed and there is no danger of profanation. Accidental dropping the host or spilling the precious blood, which is very rare, is not profanation. If it is, you have profaned the Most Blessed Sacrament when, accidentally, you have dropped a host. You must stop giving communion altogether if you think accidents amount to profanation.

There has been no H1N1 "epidemic" in our diocese that I am aware of. Out of an abundance of caution, distribution of the Precious Blood has been suspended during flu season. No big. The suspension is lifted when an abundance of caution is no longer warranted.

I didn't, as I recall, suspend the sign of peace. Again, no big.

Why don't you just admit that you were wrong when, in an attempt to smear the Orthodox in general and the Orthodox congregations in the Macon area, you said that the OCA church was a Russian Orthodox Church and that the OCA and Greeks Orthodox "do not cooperate with one another at all." They do, as Flav has noted.

One of the essential goals of dialogue among Christian denominations is to disabuse participants of the erroneous notions they have of each other. Rather than acting on your own ignorance of what the local Orthodox do, why not make an attempt to find out just what happens in real life.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I am in favor of the hygienic giving of Holy Communion under both kinds through intinction which the GIRM allows, and that is the adaption by our American bishops btw. You dispute that several people, up to 20 drinking from a common chalice and leaving sputum or what is called wash-back in the chalice can't communicate disease. It can. You implied in your comment and question that the consecrated Wine to the laity is intrinsic to the Mass. It isn't and now you have cleared that up. Thank you. Clear-up your nonsense about the possibility of disease being communicated through the common chalice and drinking someone's wash-back. That would be the next step for you.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

I might add that yes the common chalice is the option of preference of many bishops which I acknowledge. Intinction as the American bishops have made clear is a valid option too. So admit that both are fine although anyone certainly can have their preferences. My disdain for the common chalice is based upon a healthy hygiene not liturgical niceties.

At the same time, there are other valid options for the Mass that a priest can choose or disregard. This has to do with the variety of options for the Penitential Act or choosing the Blessing and Sprinkling rite instead. Why would a bishop force a priest to do only one form of the penitential act and complain if the priest always uses the sprinkling rite instead.

The same is true of the Eucharistic Prayer. Priests are not micromanaged on which one they use and from what I hear the laity seldom hear the priest praying the Roman Canon. That is the priest prerogative but questionable.

And then we have the options for the final blessing. A priest might choose never to the solemn forms and options and only the simple form and stick with only "Go in Peace."

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

And yes, a priest may choose not to give the common chalice to the laity, choose not to have the Sign of Peace and to omit the Universal Prayers, none of these are intrinsic to the Mass and in fact the radio daily Mass from St. Patrick's in New York often omits the intercessions. I've noticed it even when Cardinal Dolan is celebrant.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

No, Allan, I never said that the common cup "can't communicate disease." I never said it and I never will say it.

In fact, I have repeatedly said that the common cup CAN be a vector for disease, but that the risks are very, very low.

June 29, 2012: " Pater Ignotus said... Good Father, No one ever said there was "no chance."

Oct 27, 2914: "Pater Ignotus said... Pin/Gene - Nope, I never said you cannot get diseases from the common chalice - that is simply not true. I have said that you CAN get diseases from the common chalice, but it is very unlikely."

Oct 27, 2014: "Pater Ignotus said... "I have maintained, from the get-go that, there are many ways in which germs can be transmitted, including the common cup."

And there are numerous other instances on your blog when I have made the same statement.

I have also repeatedly said that there are other vectors for disease in our churches - coughing, sneezing, door knobs, shaking hands, etc.

I did not imply that receiving the Precious Blood is intrinsic to the liturgy. Here's what I said, "Is the reception of communion under either form by the laity "intrinsic" to the liturgy?"

See that? "Either Form" I didn't imply anything about reception of the Precious Blood by the laity because I said "either form."

We don't do only that which is "intrinsic" to the liturgy. As you have noted and as I certainly agree, "it is important that they (laity) do (receive communion) and as frequently as possible if they are in a state of grace."

Now, about your comments regarding the Orthodox....

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc, the practice of second marriage was based on little t tradition not big T Tradition and it was forced on the East by the secular rulers. Let's be honest in use of language.

You seem to think that the Orthodox Church has never changed. It has. It allows for second marriages which at one time it did not allow until it was corrupted by the secularism of the day.

There are many other changes in Orthodoxy too. And the various bishops of the various Churches and even the national ones have a variety of differences in the little t traditions as does the does the full Communion of the Church, the Catholic Church headed by the Bishop of Rome, the successor of St. Peter whom I Lord gave the authority to loose and bind and along with the other bishops in union with him to teach, rule and sanctify.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

You still imply that the reception of Holy Communion in whatever manner for the laity is intrinsic to the Mass. It isn't. It is a value, a good, highly encouraged and should from the legislative point of view be allowed, but no it isn't intrinsic to the Mass. In previous eras and right up to Vatican II often at Masses only the priest received to conclude or complete the sacrifice. At Nuptial Masses often only the bride and groom received no one else. The same for funeral Masses. It isn't a practice I endorse but it makes clear that it isn't intrinsic to the Mass that the laity receive Holy Communion at Mass. So please adjust your wrong statement above.

Marc said...

Father, you are incorrect that the practice of second marriages was forced on the east by secular rulers. The practice of allowing for second marriages has been present since the teaching of Christ and is found in the preaching of St. Paul.

Even if it were not the case that second marriages were always allowed in the Church, second marriages were surely allowed during a time when the Roman Church was in communion with the other churches that allowed for second marriages. That is, at minimum, an implicit recognition that the practice was not out of step with the tradition.

I'm aware of changes in Orthodoxy over time. I am not aware of any doctrinal changes or other changes to the tradition in Orthodoxy over time. On the other hand, I am aware of doctrinal changes ("developments") in the Roman Church's teachings over time. Do you have some specific changes that you think the Orthodox have made in mind?

As for the place of St. Peter, there is no dispute that Christ gave the authority to bind and loose to St. Peter and to the other apostles. It does not follow from that action that Christ appointed the bishop of Rome to have universal jurisdiction over every bishop in the world. That it took over 900 years for the bishop of Rome to begin to assert that sort of power is telling, especially since he began to do so under the influence of political and military power. Of course, the history of how the papacy began to exercise that level of power is a complicated issue that is not particularly relevant to this discussion.

Interestingly enough, part of the reason that the Church has always allowed for second marriages has to do with the authority of the Church to "bind and to loose," that very authority that was given to the apostles that they passed along to the bishops.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc, this is from an Orthodox website and the theology behind it is nice,kumbaya stuff, but it is clearly a break with Tradition with a capital T and the insertion of a small"t" tradition that condones adultery:

Divorce

Orthodoxy regards the marriage bond as indissoluble, and it condemns the breakdown of marriage as a sin and an evil. The Orthodox Church does permit remarriage after divorce in some cases, as an exception, a necessary concession to human sin. While condemning sin, the Church desires to help the sinners and to allow them another chance, with an act of oikonomia . When a marriage has ceased to be a reality, the Orthodox Church faces the reality with philanthropia (loving kindness).
Second marriage

The Orthodox Church teaches that a second union can never be the same as the first. In the service for a second marriage, some of the joyful ceremonies are omitted and replaced by penitential prayers.

And from another reputable Orthodox source which indicates how they manipulated and changed the dogma of indissolubility of a sacramental marriage and justify it liturgically and without precedence in early Church history of the Fathers:

The Orthodox Church is disposed to tolerate second marriages of persons whose matrimonial bonds have been dissolved by the Church, not by the State. The basis of this practice has its basis in the power given by Jesus to the Church to “loosen and to bind”. This second chance is conceded to those in particular circumstances: typically, cases of long standing adultery, but by extension as well to certain cases in which the matrimonial bond has become a pretence. There is also provided for, although discouraged, even the possibility of a third marriage. Moreover, the possibility of entering into a second marriage is conceded only to the innocent partner.


The second and third marriages, quite differently from the first marriage, are celebrated by the Orthodox in a special rite, defined as “penitential”. Because in the rite for a second marriage there is no “coronation of the bride and groom”—which for the Orthodox is the essential and defining act of the Sacrament of Matrimony—a second marriage is not a true sacrament, but, to use Latin terminology, is a “sacramental”, that allows the newly wed couple to regard the union itself as fully accepted by the Church community. The rite of second marriage applies also in the case of spouses who have been widowed.

The non-sacramentality of the second marriage finds confirmation in the disappearance of Eucharistic Communion in the Byzantine marriage rites, with the substitution of the cup of wine understood as a symbol of a common life. This appears as an attempt to desacramentalize Matrimony, perhaps because of a growing awareness of the awkward situation that a second and third marriage brings about, the motive for which is a departing from the principle of the indissolubility of the bond, which is directly proportionate to the Sacrament of Unity: the Eucharist.

Speaking to this matter, the Orthodox theologian Alexander Schmemann wrote that the cup of wine itself, raised to a symbol of the common life, “shows the descramentalization of Matrimony reduced to a natural felicitude. In the past, this was done in the context of Holy Communion, the sharing of the Eucharist, the ultimate sign of the fulfillment of Matrimony in Christ. Christ must be the true essence of the life of the man and woman together.” But how can this “essence” be preserved?

It is true, as has been pointed elsewhere, that in subsequent liturgies the couple can receive the Eucharist. Msgr Bux's point seems merely to be that, in "de-Eucharisticizing" the [false] "marriage" ceremony, even the Separated churches of the East have kept a minor liturgical vestige of the venerable unchanging apostolic doctrine on marriage that they have repudiated... in practice and that has always been gloriously and unfailingly defended by Rome.]

Marc said...

Father, if it were a break with Tradition, which it is not, then history demonstrates that Rome had no problem with this break for several centuries since this was not an issue that broke the communion. In fact, when reunion was sought by Rome, this was not an issue that stood in the way of reunion.

Copying and pasting from an Orthodox website about the teaching on second marriages does not establish the predicate fact that you are asserting -- that the practice is a break from Tradition. Do you have any evidence to support that assertion?

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc, I am shocked at your kumbaya acceptance of the Separated Eastern Church's acceptance of adultery in a second marriage that takes place in the confines of the church building and with a faux Eucharistic symbol of a common chalice. Shocked, just shocked am I that you are this way and from a lawyer no less.

Marc said...

Father, I am shocked that you are unable to supply any evidence to support your assertion that allowing for second marriages is a break from Tradition. Christ himself allowed for exceptions to his teaching on the indissolubility of marriage. Therefore, it is more shocking to claim that doing what Christ said is a break from the Tradition. And there's also that bit about binding and loosing, which is rather important to the entire question. It was certainly important to the Church fathers when they talked about this issue.

I get enough legalism in my work. These days, I am trying not to inject too much of it into my religion.

DJR said...

Flavius Hesychius said...
Sacred Scripture is clear on this point.

Please explain this further. The existence of this thread means something is obviously not 'clear on this point'.


Well, no, the existence of this thread just means some people don't understand and/or overlook Sacred Scripture; it does not mean Sacred Scripture is ambiguous on the issue.

As you know, one can find Protestants who dispute parts of Sacred Scripture that are crystal clear. The problem lies with the reader, not the text.

Here is the portion:

I Corinthians 11:26-30.

For as often as you shall eat this bread, and drink the chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord, until he come. [27] Therefore whosoever shall eat this bread OR drink the chalice of the Lord unworthily shall be guilty of the body AND of the blood of the Lord. [28] But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of the chalice. [29] For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. [30] Therefore are there many infirm and weak among you, and many sleep.

Saint Paul states that whosever "eats the bread" OR "drinks of the chalice" is guilty of "the body" AND "the blood" of the Lord.

In other words, one is guilty of BOTH by doing EITHER. Thus, the "body and blood" are both contained in both sacred species (bread and wine).

The proper translation of the Greek word is "OR" in that verse, as is obvious by the usage of the Greek for "and" in other portions, not what some early Protestants did to negate the obvious force of the passage.

Flavius Hesychius said...

historians even atheists know from authentic historical analysis that the East broke away from the Universal Church

I bet an 'authentic historical analysis' means 'an analysis with which I agree'. In fact, were one to do an 'authentic historical analysis', the further back in time one went, the quieter the papacy becomes. It virtually disappears before the collapse of the Western Roman Empire. In fact, it only becomes 'vocal' around the time the Popes began searching for an alternative emperor to the ones in Constantinople.

Why is that? Why is such an important office (as the 21st century teachings about the Papacy would attest—and, indeed, the Catholic Church claims it has always taught and believed in those same 21st century doctrines regarding the Papacy) so quiet prior to the 8th century? Why did take so long for the Pope to assert this authority, since, has you claim, it was taught by the Apostles?

Of course, the Apostles also taught that the laity should receive the Body and Blood of Christ. But that's really neither here nor there at this point in this conversation.

What I'm more interested in is why the Pope, despite his supposedly universally recognised supremacy in 325, didn't just declare the Canons of Nicea. Why, exactly, did the Pope even bother with a Council when he could have declared Ex Cathedra that Christ was the Son of God?

Therefore, it is more shocking to claim that doing what Christ said is a break from the Tradition.

Marc, apparently Trent would have declared Christ's plain teachings regarding the Eucharist to be heresy, so you know...

Marc said...

Well, DJR, your "clear" interpretation is dependent upon which part you put in bold and italics, isn't it? Here's my interpretation:

For as often as you shall eat this bread, AND drink the chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord, until he come. [27] Therefore whosoever shall eat this bread or drink the chalice of the Lord unworthily shall be guilty of the body and of the blood of the Lord. [28] But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of the chalice. [29] For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. [30] Therefore are there many infirm and weak among you, and many sleep.

It would seem that one must eat the bread AND drink the chalice to "shew the death of the Lord, until he come." With that, it would appear that the text itself is not obviously clear on this point, which is why the Church's tradition and practice is important. Do you happen to know when it came to pass that the people were given only the Bread or only the chalice? That might be more illustrative than quoting scripture.

Flavius Hesychius said...

DJR,

I thought you meant 'Sacred Scripture is clear "there is no necessity to drink from the chalice to receive both the body and the blood of Christ." Which it isn't.

Please don't have a conniption fit.

I haven't said I don't believe both species are both Body and Blood. It's all well and good that both Species are fully Body and Blood. It still doesn't justify denying the Chalice to the laity. You speak of 'necessity'. But, you know, music isn't a 'necessity'. Decorated churches aren't a 'necessity'. Stained glass isn't a 'necessity'.

That said, I disagree on that point, and think both Scripture and Holy Tradition make receiving both species a 'necessity'.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Marc and Flav are full of Orthodoxy's arrogance and one-sideness and proclivity to give into the sin of adultery, not once but twice in two additional adulterous marriages, why not a 4th, 5th 6th and so on is beyond me given the kumbaya theology behind the first adulterious marriage while one is in a sacramental marriage.

But in terms of their arrogance about Holy Communion under both kinds, Rorate Caeli has a good article to set Marc and Flav straight and back on the path to full communion with the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church which Jesus entrusted to the Head of the Apostles, Saint Peter and His successors along with the bishops in union with him:

There are two main scholarly faults (on the) topic on which enthusiasm for the laity’s communion under the species of wine seems to bias and limit his use of sources. First, and surprisingly for a university professor of early Christianity, he misleads his readers with a truncated version of the famous decree attributed to the late fifth century Pope Gelasius: “They should receive the whole sacrament or be deprived of it altogether. It is, in fact, sacrilegious to divide this mystery which is one and identical”. This is a key point of how all the faithful used to fulfill the command of Jesus to drink his Blood, until the Middle Ages and especially Trent when a number of factors took the cup away from the laity until Vatican II and present legislation most happily restored it. But it turns out that the celebrated quote, known since the 12th century from its appearance in an anonymous addition to the Decretum of Gratian, is not to be found in volume 59, page 14 of the Latin Fathers in the still widely used Migne edition. This is nothing more than the first page of the letters of Pope Gelasius, and there is no reference to reception from the cup. One wonders whether Cantalamessa simply copied a reference from another writer without ever reading the quote himself in context. If he had consulted the article on Eucharistic communion in the Dictionnaire de Théologie Catholique, for example, he would have found that just a few decades before Pope Gelasius, Pope Leo the Great had to denounce Manichean type heretics in the liturgical assembly who declined to receive the Blood of Christ, while receiving under the form of bread, as a way of avoiding contamination, in accord with their heresy which found some or all material things to be impure. Biographical sources on Gelasius say that as Pope he was himself still contending with Manicheans in the 490s, and here is where the part of the quote omitted by Cantalamessa is crucial for understanding: “by I know not what superstition”. Thus it is that Catholic writers have explained that Gelasius was only condemning abstention from the cup when the abstainer superstitiously considers its consecrated contents impure and illegitimate. It is such superstition which “divides the sacrament”; the sacrament is not divided as long as at least the priest drinks from the chalice. Furthermore the Decretum Gratiani itself referred the quote to the priest’s obligation to receive from the chalice, not the laity.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

(continued) Since the quote is only a fragment, we can speculate at this point that perhaps the context known to the interpolator (presuming the quote is authentic) was indeed capable of interpretation in this restricted sense: the Pope was condemning heretical priests who abstained from the cup. At any rate, the quote was a weapon in the arsenal of Protestants who maintained that Christ in the sixth chapter of John had commanded everyone indiscriminately to drink from the chalice; they used the Gelasian fragment from the early Church to back up their claim that the medieval Church was disobeying Christ. St. Robert Bellarmine provided a detailed response, and the great Bossuet used the Manichean connection to explain the quote in his masterful apologetic Treatise on communion under both species. The upshot is that the quote from Pope Gelasius has been explained by St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Robert Bellarmine, le grand Bossuet and countless other Catholic writers who have defended the legitimacy of not distributing the species of wine to all when there are good reasons for not doing so, but only provides a truncated version of the quote which in reality provides no support for people who exaggerate the significance of communion under both species if they do not heretically imply that the laity are obligated to receive from the chalice.
Which brings us to the second of Fr. Cantalamessa’s scholarly errors, which is one of omission: saying that the theological reason for not giving the chalice to the laity was in order to emphasize Christ’s full presence under both species, over against the Reformers, one fails to consider a different decree of the Council of Trent where it is solemnly taught that Christ’s command was never meant to obligate all of the faithful to receive the cup. In other words, the full presence of Christ under both species is not the only matter of belief which is involved with the question of the chalice: it also has to do with the true interpretation of several words of Christ himself about eating his body and drinking his blood. The Reformers claimed the plain sense of these words was the obligation of all to drink from the chalice, with the consequence that the Church was in error by reserving it to the priest. So there is a fundamental issue of faith and the Bible here: the Church’s authoritative discipline and teaching is the true interpretation of the Scriptures, and she has never understood Christ to have given a strict and universal command that everyone must drink from the chalice: it is sufficient as a minimum for the priest to do so, in the person of the apostles, as it were, and in the person of the whole Church whom he represents at the altar, as St. Thomas says.

Despite the greater sign-value of reception under both species from the standpoint of the symbolism of the chalice itself, there is therefore a value present in the Tridentine Mass where the priest alone receives from the chalice: in addition to considerations of hygiene, orderliness and ease of reverent distribution and reception, the Church perpetually implies that she, not the heretics of the sixteenth century, truly understands Christ’s words, even to the extent of knowing that he did not intend to bind everyone to receive from the chalice. And when today we hear or sense that many Catholics labor under the delusion that they do not receive the blood of Christ if they do not drink from a cup, then we have all the more reason to be grateful for the form of the Roman rite codified by St. Pius V.

Flavius Hesychius said...

Father.M

Where have I said ANYTHING about divorce and remarriage?

(FYI: If I ever have the misfortune to be ordained a bishop, I will most certainly be prohibiting divorce unless their be the best of reasons. That's already the case in most dioceses, anyway.)

I think it's funny that article does not even address anything I've written here. I'm not bothering with it, since it's irrelevant. I've never heard of the quote it mentions, nor do I have any idea as to whom the writer of that article is referring. The main point of the article was this: 'it doesn't matter if receiving the Eucharist under both kinds was the norm until even Aquinas' time. Trent says otherwise.'

That sounds just like the attitude of Vatican II, only more renaissance-y.

Marc said...

Why not a 4th marriage? Because having so many failed marriages shows a lack of repentance for the sin of divorce. And life is all about repentance that leads to theosis.

Flavius Hesychius said...

BTW, Fr.M,

Marc and Flav are full of Orthodoxy's arrogance and one-sideness

This is called an ad hominem. Rather than address anything I've written, you just write it off as 'arrogance' and 'one-sidedness' (whatever the eff that means). Kind of like you cradle Catholics writing off valid concerns of converts as 'lack of proper formation regarding obedience'.

I'm still waiting to find out about how St. Innocent and Holy Cross '...do not cooperate with one another at all.' This is news to me.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

Flav my point is that like Episcopalians and Baptists, Orthodox are more congregational than the full communion of the Church centered in Rome with its bishop the Supreme Pastor of the Church. Otherwise, Orthodoxy would accept the Bishop of Rome as its head. Congregationalism is threatened by other congregations and resent interference from foreign bodies. Episcopalians like Baptists hire and fire their pastors (rectors) although for Episcopalians they have to have their bishop's imprimatur on who they hire. I suspect the Orthodox can fire and hire their priests too. Very congregational, indeed.

Flavius Hesychius said...

I suspect the Orthodox can fire and hire their priests too.

Nope. They're assigned by the Bishop.

Orthodox are more congregational than the full communion of the Church centered in Rome with its bishop the Supreme Pastor of the Church.

No, we're not 'more congregational'. Priests are not free to do whatever they want. They have a hierarchy they must report to. Just like you do. The difference is that we don't have a singular bishop after our immediate bishop. Our bishop is our bishop, and he must report to the Synod. That's not 'congregationalism'.

Otherwise, Orthodoxy would accept the Bishop of Rome as its head.

That's a non sequitur.

Marc said...

Orthodoxy is actually vastly more uniform from one parish to another than is Roman Catholicism. I might also point out that, unlike Roman Catholicism's thousands of different "orders" of monks and priests, there is no such equivalent in Orthodoxy. Monasticism and the priesthood are uniform throughout the world, so much so that there can be one center of monasticism where monks from all over the world live together. And every Orthodox can experience the same liturgical life as the monastics since there is one liturgy throughout the world -- from Matins to Compline and the Divine Liturgy -- the monks use the same books as the parishes. And, as another example and contrary to Roman Catholicism, everyone follows the same fasting restrictions.

Isn't it amazing that, despite not having one supreme leader in Rome, the Church is able to stay consistent across geography and time? It's almost like there is something supernatural going on there...

DJR said...

Marc said...
Well, DJR, your "clear" interpretation is dependent upon which part you put in bold and italics, isn't it? Here's my interpretation:

It would seem that one must eat the bread AND drink the chalice to "shew the death of the Lord, until he come." With that, it would appear that the text itself is not obviously clear on this point, which is why the Church's tradition and practice is important. Do you happen to know when it came to pass that the people were given only the Bread or only the chalice? That might be more illustrative than quoting scripture.


The purpose of my response was to answer something someone else said regarding receiving "the body" and "the blood." It is clear from Saint Paul that a person does BOTH by receiving only ONE. That's all I meant to say.

The text of Corinthians does not say that one MUST eat the break and drink the chalice in order to show the death of the Lord; it merely says whosoever does that shows the death of the Lord. Of course, it goes without saying that every liturgy contains the two elements.

I don't know when the Latin Church's practice changed in regard to reception under both species during the liturgy, but reception of Holy Communion under one species is an ancient practice of the Church. There are numerous testimonies from the early Church to that fact.

Viaticum for the sick in the early Church was given, for the most part, under one consecrated species.

Here is some information on the subject matter:

St. Justin Martyr, writing less than a half century after St. John's death, mentions that "the deacons communicate each of those present, and carry away to the absent the blest bread, and wine and water."1 It was evidently a long established custom in his day.

Tertullian tells us of a woman whose husband was a heathen and who was allowed to keep the Holy Sacrament in her house that she might receive every morning before other food.

St. Cyprian also gives a most interesting example of reservation. In his treatise "On the Lapsed" written in A.D. 251, (chapter xxvi), he says: "Another woman, when she tried with unworthy hands to open her box, in which was the Holy of the Lord, was deterred from daring to touch it by fire rising from it."

http://www.tertullian.org/fathers2/NPNF2-14/Npnf2-14-20.htm.

DJR said...

Flavius Hesychius said...
DJR, I thought you meant 'Sacred Scripture is clear "there is no necessity to drink from the chalice to receive both the body and the blood of Christ." Which it isn't.
Please don't have a conniption fit.

I haven't said I don't believe both species are both Body and Blood. It's all well and good that both Species are fully Body and Blood. It still doesn't justify denying the Chalice to the laity. You speak of 'necessity'. But, you know, music isn't a 'necessity'. Decorated churches aren't a 'necessity'. Stained glass isn't a 'necessity'.

That said, I disagree on that point, and think both Scripture and Holy Tradition make receiving both species a 'necessity'.


I'm not having a conniption. I was merely commenting on the thread.

I don't know, but I think I may be the only one on the thread who can actually claim Eastern lineage as opposed to being a convert. My mother's family is from a Byzantine part of Europe, and my wife's mother's family as well. I belong to an eparchy.

So, I'm well familiar with Catholic/Orthodox issues, and I'm sure for much longer than anyone here on this thread (born during reign of Pius XII), but I don't get into them much, as it never seems to achieve anything. And oftentimes I find myself talking to someone who has converted to Orthodoxy and is trying to be more Eastern than actual Easterners, so that gets old.

That said, the practice of receiving Holy Communion under one species is an ancient practice of the early Church. It was done all the time for Viaticum, and still is. The Roman Church transferred that practice to the liturgy. Some people disagree with that. Understood. It is what it is.

It doesn't change anything though, nor does anyone's opinion on the matter make it wrong.

Marc said...

DJR, I think there are some aspects of the quotes you provided that make them mean something other than what you're offering them to show. There might be a difference between the "blessed bread" and the Eucharist. There certainly is today in the Divine Liturgies since the bread not used for the Eucharist, but present during the Liturgy is treated specially and eaten after receiving the Eucharist. To this day, that bread is taken away by the people to have at their home.

Moreover, since it would appear that the ancient practice was to mingle the Eucharistic bread with the Eucharistic wine, they would not be divisible after the consecration-epikelsis. Those who kept the Eucharist with them in their house had Bread that had been soaked in Wine and dried again. Those combined elements were probably what was used for viaticum.

I agree that having these sorts of discussions is pretty pointless. My main beef here is with Fr. McDonald's insistence on using made up facts and non sequiturs. Plus, I'm a little bored today, and this is an entertaining diversion.

Fr. Michael J. Kavanaugh said...

Fr. Ron Roberson, CSP, writes in in the Introduction to "The Eastern Christian Churches," "Many western Christians are baffled by the complexity of the Christian East, which can appear to be a bewildering array of national churches and ethnic jurisdictions."

I think, Good Father, your bafflement is showing in your assertion that Orthodox Churches are "congregational." What they are is "synodal," or "synodical," which can seem to Westerners to be a little bit on the "congregational" side. But it's not, really.

The Catholic west has adopted a vision of Church order based on the "primacy" of the Bishop of Rome. It is, "...centralized and based on the perception of papal universal jurisdiction." Orthodoxy follows a pattern that is, "...decentralized and based on the notion of the communion of autocephalous local Churches." (Metropolitan Hilarion, address at St. Vladimir Seminary, 8 November 2014)

Synodality is a concept that is not foreign to Catholic theology or practice. "The term conciliarity or synodality comes from the word “council” (synodos in Greek, concilium in Latin), which primarily denotes a gathering of bishops exercising a particular responsibility. It is also possible, however, to take the term in a more comprehensive sense referring to all the members of the Church." (Ravenna Document no 5)

Although there are "national" Orthodox churches, this does not necessarily reflect a political individualism. "In fact, regional synodality, whatever its contours and canonical regulation, demonstrates that the Church of God is not a communion of persons or local Churches cut off from their human roots. Because it is the community of salvation and because this salvation is “the restoration of creation” (cfr. St Irenaeus, Adv. Haer., 1, 36, 1), it embraces the human person in everything which binds him or her to human reality as created by God. The Church is not just a collection of individuals; it is made up of communities with different cultures, histories and social structures." (Ravenna Document, no 30)

Be careful in seeing things Orthodox through Catholic lenses. A lens always distorts, changing the nature of that being perceived.

Flavius Hesychius said...

It doesn't change anything though, nor does anyone's opinion on the matter make it wrong.

I haven't actually said anyone's opinion is wrong. No, the only one doing that is Fr. McDonald, who wrote, on 19 November at 4:55 AM (to me):

'I think the Council of Trent would call your heresy anathema.'

I don't know, but I think I may be the only one on the thread who can actually claim Eastern lineage as opposed to being a convert. My mother's family is from a Byzantine part of Europe, and my wife's mother's family as well. I belong to an eparchy.

So, I'm well familiar with Catholic/Orthodox issues, and I'm sure for much longer than anyone here on this thread (born during reign of Pius XII), but I don't get into them much, as it never seems to achieve anything. And oftentimes I find myself talking to someone who has converted to Orthodoxy and is trying to be more Eastern than actual Easterners, so that gets old.


Okay... that's nice... I guess?

George said...


"So it only took the Maronites until after the fourth Council to reject subsequent ones, while it took the rest of the Orthodox to "catch up" and wait until after after the Seventh to reject subsequent councils.

"Way to miss the point."

> Way to miss MY point.

"It is the Roman Catholic Church that has spread the True faith far and wide around the globe."

"No, it was the armies and colonists of Spain, Portugal, and France. I'd go as far as to call this statement blasphemy, since it implies that God sanctioned the widespread genocide of natives. One wonders why Spain felt the need to establish the Inquisition in Mexico, since God was oh-so clearly on their side anyway."

>It implies no such thing.Widespread genocide of natives? It was the efforts of the Spanish missionaries (with the assistance of Our Lady of Guadalupe) that helped bring about an end to human sacrifice in Mexico. You need to read up on the native populations of the time. Whatever the armies of Europe were guilty of, many of the the native populations of the Americas were far worse in comparison. Also, need I bring up the genocides in Russia? The Catholic Church exists in a world full of sin and disorder and so operates with its mission to convert whenever and wherever it can, no matter the circumstance it finds it self in. It is made up of human beings some of who over the history of the Church have done despicable things. It has also produced quite a number of saints.

"And there were no Catholics in Ethiopia or Egypt 'at the time of the schism'—they'd long since taken to Miaphysitism."

>I mentioned Egypt and Ethiopia because their situation was different from the rest of Africa. I didn't intend to say the Christians there were Roman Catholic at that time. Certainly Catholicism had been in those areas as it is today with the Coptic Church.

"I'm fairly certain I've addressed the whole 'why Orthodoxy is still mostly in Eastern Europe', but I guess you either ignored it or felt it was too inconvenient to respond. Your only response their was not really relevant to what I had posted there. Oh well."

>The Orthodox Church was suppressed by the Ottomans-yes, we know. Thanks be to God the Catholic Church was not so constrained and was able to go about the business of converting large parts the world. If only the Orthodox could have converted those Ottomans.

Flavius Hesychius said...
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Flavius Hesychius said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Flavius Hesychius said...

George,

You still haven't proved anything. Your vox populi argument is fallicious. I've provided enough for you and Fr. M to address. Until either one of you actually addresses what I've written with real evidence, and not your half-baked rhetoric, I'm not interested in having a conversation with you.

George said...

Flavious

I always try to defend the Catholic Church if I feel she is being maligned or impugned or misunderstood by others. I'm not the best person around to do that but I do what I can in that regard. I'm not into ad-hominem attacks. Whenever I have known and been around a person of the Orthodox faith, we got along fine. These kind of things we discussed here never came up. If they had, I would have defended the Church to the best of my limited ability, but I know things can get to where one is not as respectful to the other person as one who professes to be a Christian should be. I believe in the Catholic Church as being the God-ordained instrument of sanctification and salvation on earth containing the True Faith and having the fullness of the Truth. I believe that that the Catholic Church is, in some sense partially embodied in other Christian communities and especially so in the Orthodox Church which is closest to us. I know and acknowledge that there are those who sincerely do not believe what I believe. I would truly like to see the Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox re-united again. That is my hope. I know that will not happen by way of arguments over history and theology, but by way of prayer and sincere dialogue borne of charity and humility, which admittedly is too often lacking(not always intentionally so) in these kind of discussions.