It's good to be a Melkite
#51
(02-13-2012, 08:30 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: This is an absolute strawman. If a full and encompassing understanding of the miracle of the real presence were required to all communicants, no-one could ever partake of it since it's an unfathomable mystery in and of itself. I don't know where you get these ideas from. What is required is a proper discernment of the Body and Blood of our Lord, as Scripture itself demands: "For as often as you shall eat this bread, and drink the chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord, until he come. 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. But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of the chalice. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord." (1 Cor. 11:26-29)

In other words, the communicant, besides being baptised and alive, must be free from mortal sin (granted in the case of infants) and understand that Christ is truly and substantially present underneath the species of bread and wine (not granted under the age of reason). This, of course, is not an absolute requirement otherwise giving Holy Communion to infants as done in the Eastern churches would be sacrilegious.

More importantly, it's not an absolute requirement, seeing as the Apostles themselves did not see fit to withhold it from infants.  There's nothing in the verses you quoted about proper discernment, but being properly prepared, i.e., not in a state of mortal sin.  Christ himself said no one has life in him unless he eats his flesh and drinks his blood.  He also said to not hinder children from coming to him.  Obviously, the Apostles understood reception of the Eucharist to be included in that.  The current Latin practice is a relative novelty.  It is MODERN.  Its defense hasn't a leg to stand on.  Unless you have something actually new to add, I think we're about done here.
Reply
#52
(02-13-2012, 08:50 PM)Melkite Wrote:
(02-13-2012, 07:53 PM)Whitey Wrote: I was just wondering how you were going to explain the hypocrisy.

Simply put, there is no hypocrisy to explain.  Take care now.

Fair enough. Denial is always easier.
Reply
#53
(02-13-2012, 08:58 PM)Melkite Wrote:
(02-13-2012, 08:30 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: This is an absolute strawman. If a full and encompassing understanding of the miracle of the real presence were required to all communicants, no-one could ever partake of it since it's an unfathomable mystery in and of itself. I don't know where you get these ideas from. What is required is a proper discernment of the Body and Blood of our Lord, as Scripture itself demands: "For as often as you shall eat this bread, and drink the chalice, you shall shew the death of the Lord, until he come. 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. But let a man prove himself: and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of the chalice. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord." (1 Cor. 11:26-29)

In other words, the communicant, besides being baptised and alive, must be free from mortal sin (granted in the case of infants) and understand that Christ is truly and substantially present underneath the species of bread and wine (not granted under the age of reason). This, of course, is not an absolute requirement otherwise giving Holy Communion to infants as done in the Eastern churches would be sacrilegious.

More importantly, it's not an absolute requirement, seeing as the Apostles themselves did not see fit to withhold it from infants.  There's nothing in the verses you quoted about proper discernment, but being properly prepared, i.e., not in a state of mortal sin.  Christ himself said no one has life in him unless he eats his flesh and drinks his blood.  He also said to not hinder children from coming to him.  Obviously, the Apostles understood reception of the Eucharist to be included in that.  The current Latin practice is a relative novelty.  It is MODERN.  Its defense hasn't a leg to stand on.  Unless you have something actually new to add, I think we're about done here.

Did you actually read everything I wrote? I sometimes get the idea that you just skim over what I write and then proceed to say whatever you already wanted to say.

In any case, do you reject the legitimate development of ecclesiastical practices such as this one? Simply being different from what was done in the early Church doesn't make it bad per se or less complete. It's often quite the contrary. Usually it is the Church who, progressing through the ages, matures her own understranding of the faith and refines her practices and disciplines. For instance, CITH existed in those early times, although some claim it was only under times of persecution, but eventually the Church dropped the practice altogether seeing the danger that it posed to a correct understanding of the Real Presence. Your eastern sensibility seems to be leading you dangerously close to antiquarianism. Tell me something, do you practice the heavy penances of the early Church or have you adopted instead the MODERN penances that priests give you, so incredibly light regarding the past ones that one often wonders if we're speaking about the same Church?

One probable reason that the Church started delaying Confirmation and Holy Communion to infants, besides helping them foster an adequate discnerment of the sacraments, was to avoid what seems to be a common misconception that you yourself seem to hold: that such sacraments are absolutely necessary for salvation. They're not.
Reply
#54
(02-13-2012, 09:11 PM)Vetus Ordo Wrote: Did you actually read everything I wrote? I sometimes get the idea that you just skim over what I write and then proceed to say whatever you already wanted to say.

In any case, do you reject the legitimate development of ecclesiastical practices such as this one? Simply being different from what was done in the early Church doesn't make it bad per se or less complete. It's often quite the contrary. Usually it is the Church who, progressing through the ages, matures her own understranding of the faith and refines her practices and disciplines. For instance, CITH existed in those early times, although some claim it was only under times of persecution, but eventually the Church dropped the practice altogether seeing the danger that it posed to a correct understanding of the Real Presence. Your eastern sensibility seems to be leading you dangerously close to antiquarianism. Tell me something, do you practice the heavy penances of the early Church or have you adopted instead the MODERN penances that priests give you, so incredibly light regarding the past ones that one often wonders if we're speaking about the same Church?

One probable reason that the Church started delaying Confirmation and Holy Communion to infants, besides helping them foster an adequate discnerment of the sacraments, was to avoid what seems to be a common misconception that you yourself seem to hold: that such sacraments are absolutely necessary for salvation. They're not.

Yes, I read everything you write.  I get the same impression from you sometimes, that you're not reading everything I write.  Your point about what you think I believe about the necessity of the eucharist for salvation as an example.  If you had read closely what I said, you'd see, I never said it was of absolute necessity, and if what I said was unclear, I don't believe that it is absolutely necessary as baptism is.  But it would be an extremely grave sin to not receive them without good reason.  I think the differentiation in levels of necessity that you described was apt, and described what I was trying to briefly express.

I don't reject the legitimacy of practices changing.  I am rejecting this one because I believe it is a negative change.

Your point about the laxity of penance today versus the early centuries is taken.

I think the most probable reason for the delay in the West is that once there was more parishes than bishops, when the West decided that they wanted bishops to continue to be the one to confirm, the Latin church at the time still had the correct order for the sacraments of initiation.  Naturally, if you have to be confirmed before you can receive the Eucharist, and you delay confirmation, first eucharist would necessarily be delayed as well.

Reply
#55
(02-13-2012, 01:27 AM)Melkite Wrote: The reason why Archbishop Nicholas is doing this is precisely for the pastoral care of souls and ridding them of sin.  What better way to rid a soul of sin than to receive Christ, body, blood, soul and divinity, from the moment of baptism, before sin has a chance to firmly take hold again?

Baptism takes care of sin in infants, so the Eucharist is not necessary since the Sanctifying grace of God is already present.  Sin can't take hold until the child has attained the use of reason.  So, the innocence of Baptism remains and consequently, because they don't have the use of reason, they cannot discern the body and blood of Our Lord as being distinct from common bread and wine. 

Quote:  7-12 years is a lot of time for Satan to move in and dick around with things, so to speak.

He can do that with anyone while they have the Holy Eucharist in their mouth.  God's permissive will allows quite alot.  The Eucharist is not an innoculation, it has an element of effectiveness only when the communicant is prepared, the will must be attuned to Our Lord. 

From the Roman Catechism:

Quote: WHO ARE OBLIGED BY THE LAW OF COMMUNION



But although this law, sanctioned by the authority of God and of His Church, concerns all the faithful, it should be taught that it does not extend to those who on account of their tender age have not attained the use of reason. For these are not able to distinguish the Holy Eucharist from common and ordinary bread and cannot bring with them to this Sacrament piety and devotion. Furthermore (to extend the precept to them) would appear inconsistent with the ordinance of our Lord, for He said: Take and eat103 - words which cannot apply to infants, who are evidently incapable of taking and eating.

In some places, it is true, an ancient practice prevailed of giving the Holy Eucharist even to infants; but, for the reasons already assigned, and for other reasons in keeping with Christian piety, this practice has been long discontinued by authority of the Church.

With regard to the age at which children should be given the holy mysteries, this the parents and confessor can best determine. To them it belongs to inquire and to ascertain from the children themselves whether they have some knowledge of this admirable Sacrament and whether they desire to receive it.*

Communion must not be given to persons who are insane and incapable of devotion. However, according to the decree of the Council of Carthage, it may be administered to them at the close of life, provided they have shown, before losing their minds, a pious and religious disposition, and no danger, arising from the state of the stomach or other inconvenience or disrespect, is likely.104 *



Quote: Reception of the Eucharist, and confirmation,  for that matter, are not rites of passage though.

They are.  But they are also more than that.  I was pointing out that the bishop derisively refers to the event as a "party" and nothing that actually changes a person recieving the sacrament. 

Quote:  That may be the common understanding among Latin faithful, but it is an ignorant one.

No, not ignorant, at all. 

Again, the Roman Catechism: 

Quote:
Confirmation is Distinct from Baptism
Although said by Melchiades to have a most intimate connection with Baptism, Confirmation is still not to be regarded as the same, but as a very different Sacrament; for the variety of the grace which each of the Sacraments confers, and of the sensible sign employed to signify that grace, evidently render them distinct and different Sacraments.

Since, then, by the grace of Baptism we are begotten unto newness of life, whereas by that of Confirmation we grow to full maturity, having put away the things of a child, we can sufficiently understand that the same difference that exists in the natural life between birth and growth exists also between Baptism, which regenerates, and Confirmation, by virtue of which growth and perfect spiritual strength are imparted to the faithful.

Besides, as there should be a new and distinct kind of Sacrament when the soul has to encounter any new difficulty, it may easily be perceived that as we require the grace of Baptism to form the mind unto faith, so is it also of the utmost advantage that the souls of the faithful be strengthened by a different grace, to the end that they be deterred by no danger, or fear of pains, tortures or death, from the confession of the true faith. This, then, being accomplished by the sacred chrism of Confirmation, it is hence clearly inferred, that the nature of this Sacrament is different from Baptism.

Hence Pope Melchiades accurately evolves the difference between them, writing as follows: In Baptism man is enlisted into the service, in Confirmation he is equipped for battle; at the baptismal font the Holy Ghost imparts fullness to accomplish innocence, but in Confirmation he ministers perfection to grace; in Baptism we are regenerated unto life, after Baptism we are fortified for the combat; in Baptism we are cleansed, after Baptism we are strengthened; regeneration of itself saves those who receive Baptism in time of peace, Confirmation arms and makes ready for conflicts.

These are truths not only already recorded by other Councils, but specially defined by the holy Council of Trent; so that we are therefore no longer at liberty not only to think otherwise, but even to entertain the least doubt concerning them


Quote: Confirmation, or in this case, reception of the Eucharist, are not the Catholic version of a bar mitzvah.

Of course not, but that doesn't mean that there are no similarities at all. 

Quote: Even Latin bishops and theologians recognize that idea as an error.

EVEN the incredibly stupid Latin Bishops and theologians?  No way!  I would've thought Latin bishops would've thought they were actual bar/bat mitzvahs, they are wearing yarmulkas aren't they? 

Quote: If a Latin bishop were to do the same thing, why would he be a scandal?

For ecclesiastical bigotry.

Quote:  Granted, Latin Catholics never adopted the amount of Eastern traditions as Eastern Catholics were forced to adopt from the West, but even if you had, what would be wrong with the Latins deciding to return to their own tradition and abandon the Eastern one?

It would depend on the value and the good of the Church whether or not a particular tradition was picked up or dropped.  The Latin Church has dropped a number of traditions, picked up by the Protestants, they found their way back into the Novus Ordo in the case of the bidding prayers.  It turns out, it was a good idea to drop the bidding prayers and they should be dropped again along with the whole of the Novus Ordo, which picked up a number of Eastern prayers but without the accompanying ceremony that they East has, they have less effectiveness and a murkiness that misleads the faithful. 

But let's remember what's good for the goose is good for the gander.  If the East was "forced" to pick up particular traditions, they are equally being "forced" to abandon them regardless of their intirinsic value.  God doesn't care whether or not we mix and match traditions, it's how we use the traditions to sanctify our souls and get to Heaven as He desires for us.


Quote:  I think anyone, Western or Eastern, would be wrong to be scandalized by that.

I would be scandalized by the short-sightedness of it all.  If pews work, keep them, don't throw them out because they aren't part of some geographic tradition.  If electric lights are pragmatic, use them.  If an Eastern prayer helps me at a particular time, I use it,  if a Western prayer helps another time use it. 

I am a part of the entire Catholic Church.  A Byzantine Church or a Syro Malankara Church is my Church as far as I'm concerned, regardless of where I was born as is the local Cathedral Basilica, a missionary shack in India or St. Peter's.
Reply
#56
This is an interesting thread.  I know that Eastern Christians (not all but some) criticize the west for the practice of daily communication (which is modern).  I have read a number of arguments against the practice (the main one being that the disposition of the communicate is more important than the frequency of reception (that the communicant has to pray, fast, and abstain (from conjugal relations).  However, they staunchly defend the practice of infants receiving communion but an infant cannot pray and fast to prepare his disposition. The real theological question is can a person ignorant of the Most Holy Blessed Sacrament increase in grace just because they receive it or are in proximity to it.  The last thing to consider is that in the West we are suppose to communicate and confirm an infant if they are in danger of death.


Reply
#57
(02-14-2012, 09:53 AM)nmoerbeek Wrote: This is an interesting thread.  I know that Eastern Christians (not all but some) criticize the west for the practice of daily communication (which is modern).  I have read a number of arguments against the practice (the main one being that the disposition of the communicate is more important than the frequency of reception (that the communicant has to pray, fast, and abstain (from conjugal relations).  However, they staunchly defend the practice of infants receiving communion but an infant cannot pray and fast to prepare his disposition. The real theological question is can a person ignorant of the Most Holy Blessed Sacrament increase in grace just because they receive it or are in proximity to it.  The last thing to consider is that in the West we are suppose to communicate and confirm an infant if they are in danger of death.

The practices itself isn't criticized.  It just doens't work for most of us because the laity are supposed to refrain from sex from the night before, as well as the priest if he is married.  Daily reception is common in monasteries, and would be great in college towns where there could be a lot of unmarried people attending.
Reply
#58
(02-13-2012, 11:27 PM)Gerard Wrote: I am a part of the entire Catholic Church.  A Byzantine Church or a Syro Malankara Church is my Church as far as I'm concerned, regardless of where I was born as is the local Cathedral Basilica, a missionary shack in India or St. Peter's.

But the Church does not quite see it this way. You are under a certain bishop and this can vary depending upon you rite. Your rights and obligations under canon law also vary as there are two codes. You cannot become a priest of another rite without a formal process of switching.  An Antiochian Orthodox woman who becomes Catholic becomes Melkite, not Latin or Syro-Malankara.

I rather like the sentiment behind the part of your post I quoted. We are Catholic and can share in the different traditions. However we still belong to a specific rite.
Reply
#59
(02-14-2012, 09:53 AM)nmoerbeek Wrote: This is an interesting thread.  I know that Eastern Christians (not all but some) criticize the west for the practice of daily communication (which is modern).  I have read a number of arguments against the practice (the main one being that the disposition of the communicate is more important than the frequency of reception (that the communicant has to pray, fast, and abstain (from conjugal relations).  However, they staunchly defend the practice of infants receiving communion but an infant cannot pray and fast to prepare his disposition. The real theological question is can a person ignorant of the Most Holy Blessed Sacrament increase in grace just because they receive it or are in proximity to it.  The last thing to consider is that in the West we are suppose to communicate and confirm an infant if they are in danger of death.

It is my understanding that in the early Church daily communication was common or at least not unheard of.  The faithful would take the Holy Eucharist home with them after Sunday Mass and self-communicate daily.  
Reply
#60
(02-14-2012, 11:08 AM)newyorkcatholic Wrote:
(02-13-2012, 11:27 PM)Gerard Wrote: I am a part of the entire Catholic Church.  A Byzantine Church or a Syro Malankara Church is my Church as far as I'm concerned, regardless of where I was born as is the local Cathedral Basilica, a missionary shack in India or St. Peter's.

But the Church does not quite see it this way. You are under a certain bishop and this can vary depending upon you rite. Your rights and obligations under canon law also vary as there are two codes. You cannot become a priest of another rite without a formal process of switching.  An Antiochian Orthodox woman who becomes Catholic becomes Melkite, not Latin or Syro-Malankara.

I rather like the sentiment behind the part of your post I quoted. We are Catholic and can share in the different traditions. However we still belong to a specific rite.
The specifics of my local ordinary  and canonical issues are one thing and they are transient, but the larger issue is that there is only one Catholic Church and one Heaven to get to.  Canon Laws are all suspended when a person is near death and all that matters is a valid absolution and if possible, the last annointings.  As a laymen any priest of any rite can absolve me in confession and I can fulfill my mass obligation in any rite on any given Sunday.
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)