I think I need to clarify my position a little more here. I have been taken to task around the blogosphere for advocating open communion. I guess I should have defined this term as I see it. First off I believe that one should be baptized in order to approach the cup. I also believe that there should be some fundamental belief in the real presence. But I will ask this question. Ask any of your fellow parishioners, not converts mind you, and see if they understand the real presence or not. This is another problem if they do not but someone said they should believe this and I agree but what if someone who has been orthodox from birth does not believe because they have never been taught? Trust me they are out there.

On another blog someone used the term heterodox. If you want to know what it means look it up. But they are making my point exactly. If a person is using terms like heterodox and heretic then they are not open to new people in the church and they need a long look at their own motives. Just my opinion.

So if we are to hols that the requirement to receive is to believe in the real presence, then why are we still using communion, of lack of communion, to stay separated from each other? If the Roman Church and dare I say the Anglican Church believes in the real presence and they are baptized, then why should they not come forward and receive? But how are we to check this out? In my small parish I know each person and they know me. But what of a priest in a parish with several hundred or even a thousand, there is no way he/she (ok I will get flamed for that as well) will be able to know what is in each persons heart. This is a problem.

The Eucharist is a balm for healing. A medicine if you will. I cannot withhold medication from someone that is in need. Jesus ate and drank with sinners because they were the ones that needed Him. Why should HIS church be more exclusive then HE was?

If you come to my church you are welcome to approach the cup!

1 Comment

  1. Father Peter –

    I think it’s important that we ask “who acts” in the Eucharist. Orthodoxy is clear, Anglicanism too, (and to a certain extant, Rome) that it is *not* the priest who is “doing” anything, but rather God. It is God who makes the Bread and Wine to convey the Real Presence of Jesus to us.

    That being the case… why do we put so much emphasis on what one believes when he comes forward?

    Some say the priest is there to protect us from coming forward incorrectly: God could strike us dead, you know. Yet all churches teach that the unworthiness of the minister does not hinder the sacrament: So God is doing the protection, not the priest.

    And how can we know the state of someone’s heart, anyway? I know that some in the EO seem to credit their clergy with near-miraculous powers of knowing and “soul-seeing”, simply by virtue of Ordination. But I’m impressed with a priest seems to know everyone’s name at communion!

    What this quest does is give us an opportunity to judge.

    And as we Judge…

    Lord have mercy on all of us!

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