[109] On June 2, 1991 (feast of Corpus Christi), the Pontifical Council for the Laity issued specific guidelines that permit perpetual adoration in parishes. of Bekker, p. 1029, a. [10] To be faithful to Thomas' theology, then, the purpose of the bread should never be overlooked in the effort to find meaning. A good Communion is recognized less in the transitory sweetness of the emotions than in its lasting practical effects on the conduct of our daily lives. There are also texts for celebrating, within Mass, Religious Profession, the Dedication of a Church and several other rites. According to John, Jesus did not tone down these sayings, even when many of his disciples abandoned him (John 6:66), shocked at the idea.[18]. When, therefore, He Who is All Truth and All Power said of the bread: “This is my body”, the bread became, through the utterance of these words, the Body of Christ; consequently, on the completion of the sentence the substance of bread was no longer present, but the Body of Christ under the outward appearance of bread. myst. Holy Communion may be received under one kind (the Sacred Host or the Precious Blood alone), or under both kinds (both the Sacred Host and the Precious Blood). In the Western Church, "the administration of the Most Holy Eucharist to children requires that they have sufficient knowledge and careful preparation so that they understand the mystery of Christ according to their capacity and are able to receive the body of Christ with faith and devotion. Council of Trent, Sess. [75] The Instruction Redemptionis sacramentum states: "The Communion-plate for the Communion of the faithful should be retained, so as to avoid the danger of the sacred host or some fragment of it falling."[76]. Not many theologians, however, followed him in this regard, among the few being Ambrose Catharinus, Cheffontaines, and Hoppe, by far the greater number preferring to stand by the unanimous testimony of the Fathers. When in the fourth century the abuse crept in of priests receiving Holy Communion at the hands of deacons, the First Council of Nicaea (325) issued a strict prohibition to the effect, that “they who offer the Holy Sacrifice shall not receive the Body of the Lord from the hands of those who have no such power of offering”, because such a practice is contrary to “rule and custom”. For, in the first place, there is verified a continuous definitive multilocation, called also replication, which consists in this, that the Body of Christ is totally present in each part of the continuous and as yet unbroken Host and also totally present throughout the whole Host, just as the human soul is present in the body. It is well known how Zwingli by a clever manipulation of the latter phrase succeeded in one day in winning over to his interpretation the entire Catholic population of Zurich. [101][102][103][104][105] Authors such as the Venerable Concepcion Cabrera de Armida and Blessed Maria Candida of the Eucharist have produced large volumes of text based on their Eucharistic meditations. Thus from the concept of Transubstantiation is excluded every sort of merely accidental conversion, whether it be purely natural (e.g. No one will deny that certain expressions occur in Augustine as forcibly realistic as those of Tertullian and Cyprian or of his intimate literary friends, Ambrose, Optatus of Mileve, Hilary, and Chrysostom. viii; Sess. pro Armenis: adunatio ad Christum), which union as such does not consist in the sacramental reception of the Host, but in the spiritual and mystical union with Jesus by the theological virtue of love. From the explanations of our liturgies to the most eminent Catholics who made Australia what it is, you will find it all here. The latter is the soul’s mode of presence in the human body. [68], Catholics must make an outward sign of reverence before receiving. Matt., xxvi, 27 sq. Where one is, the other must be. Also a part of Church teaching are the need for a special minister for the celebration of the Eucharist; and the lasting presence of Christ in the bread and the respect that should be shown to the bread. XIII cap. [51] Several priests may concelebrate the same offering of the Eucharist.[52]. Eventually the West became the classic home of scientific perfection in the difficult doctrine of Transubstantiation. The foregoing rules would of themselves establish the natural meaning with certainty, even if the words of Institution, “This is my body—this is my blood”, stood alone. Cardinal Bellarmine (De Euchar., I, 3), moreover, calls attention to the fact, and rightly so, that if in Christ’s mind the manna was a figure of the Eucharist, the latter must have been something more than merely blessed bread, as otherwise the prototype would not substantially excel the type. Thus, too, the theory of Impanation advocated by Osiander and certain Berengarians, and according to which a hypostatic union is supposed to take place between the substance of the bread and the God-man (impanatio= Deus pans factus), is authoritatively rejected. This may be adduced both from the words of promise (John, vi, 26 sqq.) Therefore let us celebrate the feast, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. When at his Last Supper Jesus said: "This is my body", what he held in his hands had all the appearances of bread. XIII, can. Later synods, as those of Auxerre (578) and the Trullan (692), took very energetic measures to put a stop to a custom so difficult to eradicate. And this also has been made known, that certain deacons now touch the Eucharist even before the bishops. Of all seven sacraments, the Holy Eucharist, or Holy Communion, is the most central and important to Catholicism. The Holy Eucharist is not merely a food, but a medicine as well. Regarding tradition, the earliest witnesses, as Tertullian and Cyprian, could hardly have given any particular consideration to the genetic relation of the natural elements of bread and wine to the Body and Blood of Christ, or to the manner in which the former were converted into the latter; for even Augustine was deprived of a clear conception of Transubstantiation, so long as he was held in the bonds of Platonism. The position of the Church in this regard may be readily determined from the Council of Constance (1414-1418). Therefore it is that spiritual writers recommend frequent Communion as the most effective remedy against impurity, since its powerful influence is felt even after other means have proved unavailing (cf. By the very fact that the Eucharistic mystery does transcend reason, no rationalistic explanation of it, based on a merely natural hypothesis and seeking to comprehend one of the sublimest truths of the Christian religion as the spontaneous conclusion of logical processes, may be attempted by a Catholic theologian. The consecrated hosts are not merely changed permanently into Eucharist, but are due the worship of latria. According to the symbolical interpretation, corpus is supposed to designate the Church as the mystical Body and sanguis the New Testament. A second explanation is based, not upon the enacted Consecration, but upon the approaching Communion, inasmuch as the latter, being the effective means of uniting us more closely in the organized body of the Church, brings forth in our hearts the mystical Christ, as is read in the Roman Canon of the Mass: “Ut nobis corpus et sanguis fiat”, i.e. A deeper reason for the permanence of Presence is found in the fact, that some time elapses between the confection and the reception of the sacrament, i.e. Ex 24:6-8). For if they eat with faith, even though some deadly poison is given to them, after this it will not be able to harm them. It is, therefore, one of the sacraments of the living. Eucharist definition, the sacrament of Holy Communion; the sacrifice of the Mass; the Lord's Supper. Especially against the Monophysites, who based on the Eucharistic conversion an a pari argument in behalf of the supposed conversion of the Humanity of Christ into His Divinity, did the Fathers retort by concluding from the continuance of the unconverted Eucharistic accidents to the unconverted Human Nature of Christ. The second and more scientific explanation asserts that in the Scriptural opposition of “flesh and blood” to “spirit”, the former always signifies carnal-mindedness, the latter mental perception illumined by faith, so that it was the intention of Jesus in this passage to give prominence to the fact that the sublime mystery of the Eucharist can be grasped in the light of supernatural faith alone, whereas it cannot be understood by the carnal-minded, who are weighed down under the burden of sin. The custom of the annual Corpus Christi procession was warmly defended and recommended by the Council of Trent (Sess. ii), according to the promise of Christ: “He that eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood, hath everlasting life: and I will raise him up on the last day.” Hence the chief reason why the ancient Fathers, as Ignatius (Ephes., 20), Irenaeus (Adv. Thus, Jesus declares at the Last Supper that his own blood, poured out in his Passion and made really present in the Eucharist, reestablishes the bond of kinship between God and man. Therefore, although the priest (or minister) says, "The body of Christ", when administering the host, and, "The blood of Christ", when presenting the chalice, the communicant who receives either one receives Christ, whole and entire— "Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity". However, if the non-Catholic has been baptized in the name of all three persons of the Trinity (and not only in the name of, say, Jesus, as is the baptismal practice in some branches of Christianity), then, in exceptional cases and provided the bishop of the diocese gives permission, it may be considered suitable to celebrate the Marriage within Mass, except that, according to the general law, Communion is not given to the non-Catholic (Rite of Marriage, 8). St. Ignatius of Antioch, c. 110: "Let that be considered a valid Eucharist which is celebrated by the bishop, or by one whom he appoints" (Jurgens §65). [35][36][37], According to the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church "The Eucharist is the very sacrifice of the Body and Blood of the Lord Jesus which he instituted to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until his return in glory. If the danger of death is present or if, in the judgment of the diocesan bishop or conference of bishops, some other grave necessity urges it, Catholic ministers administer these same sacraments licitly also to other Christians not having full communion with the Catholic Church, who cannot approach a minister of their own community and who seek such on their own accord, provided that they manifest Catholic faith in respect to these sacraments and are properly disposed. For this reason the consecrated elements are preserved, generally in a church tabernacle, for giving Holy Communion to the sick and dying, and also for the secondary, but still highly lauded, purpose of adoring Christ present in the Eucharist. (Ch. 692). Then, too, it would follow from analogy, that the breaking of the bread was a parable of the slaying of Christ’s Body, a meaning utterly inconceivable. Catholics believe in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, meaning that what appears to be bread and wine is really Jesus’ body and blood—not just a symbol of his body and blood. Their governing authority flows from their priestly function, not the other way around. The disciples were unable to recognize him for who he was until "while he was at table, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them. First of all the whole structure of the discourse of promise demands a literal interpretation of the words: “eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood”. Holy Communion is indeed the Bread of Life, a banquet overflowing with grace and richness: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (Jn 10:10) You can return to the main article on the Catholic Sacraments , or go to our home page to see the other articles about the Catholic … Nothing is lacking for the perfection of the Eucharist. [ 52 ] receive the Eucharist sometimes... 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