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Author Topic: Miracle of Lanciano - Eucharistic Miracle of Orthodox West  (Read 9982 times) Average Rating: 0
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Lenexa
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« on: December 17, 2008, 08:30:21 PM »

Thought I would post these links as nothing came up when I searched Lanciano!
Enjoy!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eucharistic_miracle#The_miracle_of_Lanciano
http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/lanciano.html
http://www.michaeljournal.org/eucharist3.htm
http://www.miraclerosarymission.org/lanciano.html
http://www.zenit.org/article-12933?l=english

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« Reply #1 on: December 18, 2008, 12:24:10 AM »

I've heard of this. I didn't know it was long before the Schism. To think that people fight over what kind of bread to use. BREAD! Apparently God doesn't have a problem with it.
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« Reply #2 on: December 18, 2008, 12:40:32 AM »

This seems to prove that the use of unleavened bread is okay. I wonder why it remained a controversy?
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« Reply #3 on: December 18, 2008, 12:48:46 AM »

Isn't this the miracle that happened in a orthodox church in italy that the latins seized and latinized but a orthodox miracle...Father Ambrose Mentioned something to this fact curious.....SmileyCentral.com" border="0
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« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2008, 01:09:36 AM »

How is the act of knowingly eating real genetically untested flesh and liquid blood not cannibalism and salvific?
« Last Edit: December 18, 2008, 01:19:37 AM by alexp4uni » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2008, 01:45:50 AM »

Why don't they clone the tissue and achieve the Second Coming? Huh
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« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2008, 02:02:36 AM »

Why don't they clone the tissue and achieve the Second Coming? Huh

What kind of question is that supposed to be?   Huh

I'm curious.  If the miracle first occurred in 700, long before the Schism, why doesn't the Eastern Rite Orthodox lay claim to this miracle as well?  The Byzantines were in Italy until the 8th or 9th Centuries at the latest.
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« Reply #7 on: December 18, 2008, 02:38:56 AM »

From the Russian Sluzhebnik (Priest's Service Book):

"If after the consecration of the bread & wine a miracle is revealed, ie, if the bread manifests the appearance of a child or the wine the appearance of blood, and if in a short time this appearance does not change, ie, if they do not appear again under the form of bread & wine, but if they remain thus without change, then let the priest not take communion because it is not the Body & Blood of Christ, but a miracle from God manifest only because of the lack of faith or some other reason." (emphasis mine)

The instruction goes on to say that if the Body assumes another appearance then the priest must make another Lamb as he did at Proskomedia. He then resumes the Liturgy with the prayer "With these blessed hosts..." which is the prayer said at the Anaphora while the choir sings, "Holy, holy, holy..." If the Blood changes appearance, then he must pour new wine into the chalice. The purpose of this is so the faithful may still receive the Body & Blood of Christ at the Liturgy.
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« Reply #8 on: December 18, 2008, 05:43:36 PM »

How is the act of knowingly eating real genetically untested flesh and liquid blood not cannibalism and salvific?
Because in the Eucharist it does not come to us in its natural mode. If it were the case and looked, tasted, felt, and smelled of flesh and blood then it would be in its natural mode and it would be cannibalism. However, in the Eucharist we recieve the Body and Blood of Christ in supernatural and sacramental mode, under the appearance of bread and wine. Because of the Eucharist's supernatural character, it is no longer cannibalism but a union with God made flesh.
In the few examples where the Eucharist not only becomes christ but also takes on the physical appearance of flesh and blood, one would not receive communion. Such is not to be consumed but is a miracle to cast out doubt.
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« Reply #9 on: December 18, 2008, 06:06:06 PM »

Quote
I'm curious.  If the miracle first occurred in 700, long before the Schism, why doesn't the Eastern Rite Orthodox lay claim to this miracle as well?

Orthodoxy seems to be more wary of such proclaimed miracles...
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« Reply #10 on: December 19, 2008, 05:11:15 AM »

Here is a recent eucharistic miracle which occurred in a Romanian monastery at Sihastria.

This is from a book published by SVS Press
http://www.svspress.com/product_info.php?manufacturers_id=&products_id=2598

While serving as head sacristan Brother Constantine(Elder Cleopa before his tonsure) was an eyewitness to several miracles, which occured during the Divine Liturgy at Sihastria. He recalled these in later years and would recount them to those who came to him for their spiritual edification.

Look at at what happened to a very good priest, Fr.Calistrat Bobu. He was a known spiritual father and confessor, but he went to see a nun who was living as a hermit in the forest. At that time there were about fifty known monks and nuns living alone like that in the woods. This particular nun continued to adhere to the old calendar, in opposition to the decision of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church. When Fr.Calistrat visited her, she said,"The Holy Spirit does not descend when you serve the Divine Liturgy because you have gone over to the new calendar!" From that time on, Fr.Calistrat had doubts about the decision of the Holy Synod.

Once while I was serving my turn as sacristan, I noticed that the antidoron for the abbot was white and very sweet, while the one for Fr.Calistrat was green and almost spoiled. I asked Abbot Ioanichie about this.

'Fr.Abbot why is it that when Fr.Calistrat serves his antidoron is green and rancid?'

'Oh! My son he serves with doubt in his mind! He went to an ascetic nun in the forest who told him that the Holy Spirit does not descend upon the Holy Gifts at the at the Liturgy because of the calendar issue. I told him he is going to endure trials because of this doubt in his mind!

Then when Fr.Calistrat was serving the Divine Liturgy and invoked the grace of the Holy Spirit, he saw that the Lamb had become flesh, and blood was flowing on the holy disc and onto the holy antimins. Then when he looked into the chalice he saw blood. He called me over to the altar table: 'Brother Constantine, come over here! What do you see?'

'Oh! Fr.Calistrat! The holy communion has become real flesh and blood!'

Then he sent me to call the abbot. When Fr.Ioanichie came into the altar he immediately told those at the cliros to read from the Psalter. Then he turned to Fr.Calistrat and said, 'So! Fr.Calistrat, now do you believe that the Holy Spirit descends upon the Gifts?'

'Forgive me, Father!' Fr.Calistrat answered and fell on his knees.

Fr.Abbot Ioanichie continued to speak to Fr.Calistrat 'Look! Has the Holy Spirit come? Has he transformed this into flesh? Is this blood? Do you still have doubts, Father?'

'I do believe Fr.Abbot. I beg you to forgive me!'

'Gather up the Holy Mysteries!' "

Then with the spear they made a small hole in the leg of the, altar table, because the altar table is the tomb of Christ, and they buried they buried the Holy Mysteries there according to the teachings of the holy fathers. They then washed the chalice in the basin in the altar, together with the holy antimins. I stayed there for several hours until the entire Psalter had been read. Then they began the Divine Liturgy again from the point of the of the Proskomedia 'And one of the soldiers pierced His side with a lance . . .' They continued through the Divine Liturgy, and the miracle did not repeat itself.

'Now do you believe?' the Abbot asked Fr.Calistrat.

'I believe Father.'
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« Reply #11 on: December 19, 2008, 09:50:59 AM »

Quote
I'm curious.  If the miracle first occurred in 700, long before the Schism, why doesn't the Eastern Rite Orthodox lay claim to this miracle as well?

Orthodoxy seems to be more wary of such proclaimed miracles...

[tangent]
Brother that is claptrap so are the Catholics. Why do I constantly see such rampant RCC double standards. "The Orthodox never do this" yes they do and have give it a rest.
[/tangent]
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« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2008, 12:21:02 PM »

Huh? 
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« Reply #13 on: December 19, 2008, 02:06:45 PM »

Huh? 

Ditto that...
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« Reply #14 on: December 19, 2008, 04:16:50 PM »

I've heard of this. I didn't know it was long before the Schism. To think that people fight over what kind of bread to use. BREAD! Apparently God doesn't have a problem with it.

Nevertheless, the Orthodox Church does insist on the use of leavened bread.  It is one of the things that would have to be changed in the Latin Church should she ever come back into the Orthodox fold.  Curiously enough, the Western Church used leavened bread until after the time of this miracle....maybe the kinds of hosts under contention were not the flat ones but the leavened ones used in Western rite Orthodoxy today, although it is possible that they were azymes.  By commentiing on this, I am not saying that the miracle did not really happen or that it really did happen either.   
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« Reply #15 on: December 19, 2008, 04:19:42 PM »

WARNING:  This response may contain concepts and language foreign to Orthodoxy.  Use extreme caution when considering its arguments. 


How is the act of knowingly eating real genetically untested flesh and liquid blood not cannibalism and salvific?
Because in the Eucharist it does not come to us in its natural mode. If it were the case and looked, tasted, felt, and smelled of flesh and blood then it would be in its natural mode and it would be cannibalism. However, in the Eucharist we recieve the Body and Blood of Christ in supernatural and sacramental mode, under the appearance of bread and wine. Because of the Eucharist's supernatural character, it is no longer cannibalism but a union with God made flesh.
In the few examples where the Eucharist not only becomes christ but also takes on the physical appearance of flesh and blood, one would not receive communion. Such is not to be consumed but is a miracle to cast out doubt.
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« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2008, 04:03:20 AM »


Sorry brother my post wasn't really just directed at you just in general. I believe people tend to lay this claim that just because they believe the Orthodox church is the True Church then it as a whole is completely different to the approach of the RCC (for example saying that liturgical abuses happen in RCC and they don't in the EO church)
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« Reply #17 on: December 26, 2008, 09:54:10 PM »

I'm curious.  If the miracle first occurred in 700, long before the Schism, why doesn't the Eastern Rite Orthodox lay claim to this miracle as well?  The Byzantines were in Italy until the 8th or 9th Centuries at the latest.

It seems no one jumped on this and realized my alterior motive. This was not out of desire to create anger or hostility or deceit I simply wanted to see if anyone would notice. In the article it says,
"During the Mass, when he said the words of consecration (This is my Body...This is my Blood), he saw the bread change into live flesh and the wine change into live blood"
In the Orthodox Church we do not believe that the bread and wine becomes the body and blood of Christ until the Epiklesis!
This portion of the account of the miracle, the use of unleavened bread, and perhaps even the emphasis it seems to place on the five wounds of Christ? - the five wounds of Christ play a strong role in Western Spirituality - seem to make it un-settling to most Orthodox and would not recognize it as an Orthodox miracle.
The question of whether the Bread and Wine become the Body and Blood of Christ at the words of Consecration or the Epiklesis is key to answering whether you are Orthodox or Catholic as this differentiates us, there is no gray area here, according to both sides, and is not up for debate.
This is a story that really shocked me into doing research which I have still not concluded as it is hard to find historically verified answers.
The use of leavened or unleavened bread in Church history is interesting!
Recently I read:
Quote
Some authors are of the opinion that down to the tenth century both the Eastern and Western Churches used leavened bread; others maintain that unleavened bread was used from the beginning in the Western Church; still others hold that unleavened or leavened bread was used indifferently. St. Thomas (IV, Dist. xi, qu. 3) holds that, in the beginning, both in the East and West unleavened bread was used; that when the sect of the Ebionites arose, who wished that the Mosaic Law should be obligatory on all converts, leavened bread was used, and when this heresy ceased the Latins used again unleavened bread, but the Greeks retained the use of leavened bread.

When I saw pictures of an Armenian Liturgy I was shocked at how the bread looked! It was un-leavened! Like the Catholics!
I really try to keep an opened mind because I know that I am not naturally open-minded and one cannot convince others if you have never even tried to see things from their point of view!
This does not mean I think that we should forget the Orthodox Church has pronounced that leavened bread is the only bread to be used in the Eucharist and that this cannot be broken.
What should we say if the Apostolic Canons would then be violated also under pretext that there is some historical evidence that in the very early Church the first Communion was made of Milk and Honey? [Can you believe it? I never heard of this until recently!]
Rules are Rules. Look at what happened to the Catholics with their sugar cookie masses!

Here is a recent eucharistic miracle which occurred in a Romanian monastery at Sihastria.

This is from a book published by SVS Press
http://www.svspress.com/product_info.php?manufacturers_id=&products_id=2598

There are more Eucharistic Miracles mentioned in this book!
Read it! Absolutely read this book!
It is one of the best and most eye-opening reads you will have! I still think about some of the stories of Elder Cleopa hiding in the forests, the Romanian Thebaid, especially the one in which a demonic visitor comes to disturb him!
Really scary and incredible to read!

Thanks all!
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« Reply #18 on: December 27, 2008, 12:02:10 AM »

WARNING:  This response may contain concepts and language foreign to Orthodoxy.  Use extreme caution when considering its arguments. 


How is the act of knowingly eating real genetically untested flesh and liquid blood not cannibalism and salvific?
Because in the Eucharist it does not come to us in its natural mode. If it were the case and looked, tasted, felt, and smelled of flesh and blood then it would be in its natural mode and it would be cannibalism. However, in the Eucharist we recieve the Body and Blood of Christ in supernatural and sacramental mode, under the appearance of bread and wine. Because of the Eucharist's supernatural character, it is no longer cannibalism but a union with God made flesh.
In the few examples where the Eucharist not only becomes christ but also takes on the physical appearance of flesh and blood, one would not receive communion. Such is not to be consumed but is a miracle to cast out doubt.
Can you please point out what is unOrthodox about this?
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« Reply #19 on: December 27, 2008, 04:10:00 AM »

WARNING:  This response may contain concepts and language foreign to Orthodoxy.  Use extreme caution when considering its arguments. 


How is the act of knowingly eating real genetically untested flesh and liquid blood not cannibalism and salvific?
Because in the Eucharist it does not come to us in its natural mode. If it were the case and looked, tasted, felt, and smelled of flesh and blood then it would be in its natural mode and it would be cannibalism. However, in the Eucharist we recieve the Body and Blood of Christ in supernatural and sacramental mode, under the appearance of bread and wine. Because of the Eucharist's supernatural character, it is no longer cannibalism but a union with God made flesh.
In the few examples where the Eucharist not only becomes christ but also takes on the physical appearance of flesh and blood, one would not receive communion. Such is not to be consumed but is a miracle to cast out doubt.
Can you please point out what is unOrthodox about this?

Brother he doesn't say it is unOrthodox he says that the language used may be foreign not the concepts.
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« Reply #20 on: December 30, 2008, 03:41:56 PM »

This is a story that really shocked me into doing research which I have still not concluded as it is hard to find historically verified answers.
The use of leavened or unleavened bread in Church history is interesting!
Recently I read:
Quote
Some authors are of the opinion that down to the tenth century both the Eastern and Western Churches used leavened bread; others maintain that unleavened bread was used from the beginning in the Western Church; still others hold that unleavened or leavened bread was used indifferently. St. Thomas (IV, Dist. xi, qu. 3) holds that, in the beginning, both in the East and West unleavened bread was used; that when the sect of the Ebionites arose, who wished that the Mosaic Law should be obligatory on all converts, leavened bread was used, and when this heresy ceased the Latins used again unleavened bread, but the Greeks retained the use of leavened bread.

When I saw pictures of an Armenian Liturgy I was shocked at how the bread looked! It was un-leavened! Like the Catholics!
I really try to keep an opened mind because I know that I am not naturally open-minded and one cannot convince others if you have never even tried to see things from their point of view!
This does not mean I think that we should forget the Orthodox Church has pronounced that leavened bread is the only bread to be used in the Eucharist and that this cannot be broken.
Ya know, maybe you should read this concurrent thread, which might give you some insight into the Armenian use of unleavened bread in the Eucharist.

Quote
What should we say if the Apostolic Canons would then be violated also under pretext that there is some historical evidence that in the very early Church the first Communion was made of Milk and Honey? [Can you believe it? I never heard of this until recently!]
Rules are Rules.
Yes, and slavish obedience to rules with no deeper understanding of why the rules exist is called legalism.  It's not enough to just follow rules because the Church says we must follow them.

Quote
Look at what happened to the Catholics with their sugar cookie masses!
Personally, I would find sugar cookie masses preferable to the brand of soul-destroying legalism you just spouted above.


BTW, welcome to the forum! Grin
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« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2008, 09:14:11 PM »

My apologies if my comments denoted Legalism.
It was more in a spirit of fidelity to Tradition. When the canons are legitimately reformed in the course of organic development of the Church which is to say growing under the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
However that the Eucharist is bread and wine transformed in its essence into the Body and Blood of Christ and not kool-aid and dorito chips, as I have seen and read about, and that this has never changed is important right?
I feel I do have a deeper understanding of the rules which is why I would never put rules over charity, over basic human kindness, nor do I desire to expound on this.
I am heartily sorry and embarrassed for my lack of precision in posting my comments!
I am a firm opponent of legalism and always have been.
I am a Counter-revolutionary as are all who oppose Liberalism in the Church in support of fidelity to Tradition
I never meant to imply orders are orders, as the Nazis did, simply that rules, that is the canons of the Church do not require individual approval or a deeper understanding on the part of the individual to be obeyed and valid.
Especially those that have existed and confirmed again and again throughout the course of Church history.
I think that this is am important point that is often forgotten by Church members today.

My comments on the Armenian liturgy were not serious nor were they meant to be understood as such and I apologize.
They were more to express my surprise and immediate feeling when I found out about this and saw pictures of an Armenian Liturgy. Like "Wow! That's cool!"

I used to post on this forum quite regularly years ago as Sabbas. Obviously I am not often good at expressing my true thoughts and feelings to everyone. I found posting and constant reading of all discussions to be time consuming and not often the best use of my time.
When you work ten to twelve hours a day in a factory and have responsibilities at home and to the family it gets very difficult to find time to even read or pray at all.

I suppose I just thought this would be an interesting subject for those in the Western Rite forum to discuss.

I won't spout soul-destroying legalism again.
Asking your prayers and charity!
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« Reply #22 on: December 31, 2008, 07:31:01 PM »

Dear Lenexa,

Have a look at this message in another thread...

CATHOLIC SCHOLARS SAY THAT THE CHURCH OF ROME USED LEAVENED BREAD
for the first 800 and more years.


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13141.msg272267/topicseen.html#msg272267
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« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2009, 05:40:07 AM »

Simply because the miracle of of lanciano is dressed up in a monstrance, as is usually done to unleavened bread, this does not mean it is anything other than leavened bread. If it truly comes from the period in italy which it does, no other possibility exists.
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« Reply #24 on: January 29, 2009, 07:14:06 PM »

Simply because the miracle of of lanciano is dressed up in a monstrance, as is usually done to unleavened bread, this does not mean it is anything other than leavened bread. If it truly comes from the period in italy which it does, no other possibility exists.

Except for the fact that the whole basis for the miracle was the fact that a Greek priest was celebrating the Latin Mass and had doubts about the validity of using unleavened bread.
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« Reply #25 on: January 29, 2009, 09:39:37 PM »

Simply because the miracle of of lanciano is dressed up in a monstrance, as is usually done to unleavened bread, this does not mean it is anything other than leavened bread. If it truly comes from the period in italy which it does, no other possibility exists.

Except for the fact that the whole basis for the miracle was the fact that a Greek priest was celebrating the Latin Mass and had doubts about the validity of using unleavened bread.
Except of course that at that period of history in Italy, the 8th century, all of Italy, whether the areas under the Pope or the areas under the Patriarch of Constantinople, used LEAVENED bread.   Cheesy

Refer to
CATHOLIC SCHOLARS SAY THAT THE CHURCH OF ROME USED LEAVENED BREAD
for the first 800 and more years.


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13141.msg272267/topicseen.html#msg272267
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« Reply #26 on: January 29, 2009, 10:14:53 PM »

Except of course many scholars disagree with Jungman and the others and there is no decisive proof either way.  Unleavened bread in 8th century Italy, outside of Rome, was a possibility.  Given that in the 11th century even Latin Churches in Constantinople used unleavened bread it should be not surprising those in Southern Italy used it earlier. 
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« Reply #27 on: January 30, 2009, 10:48:24 PM »

Okay, I have to say that from my research, the time we are discussing, around 700 A.D. Lanciano was not under Roman control but under Lombard control. The Lombards were a mix of Catholics and Arians though I confess I don't know if there is any figures on what the numbers were at this time period. The Lombards originated in Northern Europe, likely celebrated the Eucharist with unleavened bread, hence this story sounds quite plausible. The Church of Rome, under Roman or Byzantine control at this time, did use leavened bread, and I write this with almost 100 percent certainty but that a Catholic Church in Lanciano used leavened bread in spite of the specific dynamics of this story? that I must contend! Research on this has been difficult for me. I wish it were a bit more cut and dry but it simply is not. I think that the historical evidence is over-whelmingly in favor of this storys veracity.
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I don't fully understand why or how long but unleavened bread already seems to have been common in various areas under Frankish-Germanic control in the West at this time.
I almost wonder if this is related to the Arians being so prevalent in early Medieval Europe amongst the Germanic peoples. Hmmm, did the Arians in Western Europe develop the use of unleavened bread for celebrating the Eucharist?
This is all conjecture from an idiot and I can't fathom how this could ever be conclusively investigated by archaeologists but I think it would be interesting!
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« Reply #28 on: January 30, 2009, 11:00:34 PM »

I would like to write and than publish either a book or long article about the history and dominance of unleavened bread in the the western orthodox/catholic church. I would put into it factual conclusions as much as possible. I think that the scholars who disagree about the usage of leavened bread in the western church are more often times using out dated biased evidence or are overly attached to what they feel is their own "cultural tradition" and revising history.

A a few monthes ago I was told by an Orthodox priest that when St Boniface was converting the Saxons and Frisians in the 710's he used unleavened bread because it was easier to prepare and keep sanitary. And that somehow this was than deemed to be apostolic practice by these people which spread it throughout other western territories by the time of Charlemagne. However I have not been able to verify that this story is at all true. (You can see if you experiment that an opened box of matzos or similar bread/cracker left in a dark corner of the kitchen is mold free and tastes alright one month later)
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« Reply #29 on: January 30, 2009, 11:17:39 PM »

Okay, I have to say that from my research, the time we are discussing, around 700 A.D. Lanciano was not under Roman control but under Lombard control.

Around 700 AD Lanciano was part of the Byzantine provinces of Italy.  It was under Byzantium (i.e., Constantinople) from 610 AD to the late 8th century

Sources say:

"During fall of the Western Roman Empire, Lanciano was sacked by the Goths, and was destroyed during the Lombard invasion (c. 571 AD). A new settlement was then created around a castle built by the new rulers. In 610, however, it was conquered by the Byzantines, who annexed it to the Duchy of ''Teate'' (Chieti) and allowed the trades to restart. In the late 8th century Lanciano was conquered by the Franks, who included it in the Duchy of Spoleto."
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« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2009, 04:24:02 AM »

(You can see if you experiment that an opened box of matzos or similar bread/cracker left in a dark corner of the kitchen is mold free and tastes alright one month later)

Funny you should ask.  Just so happens I have a box of matzos from Passover 2007 with a few left in the pantry.  After inspection not a speck of mold and upon tasting they taste the same as when the box was opened, pretty bland.

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« Reply #31 on: October 11, 2010, 05:12:10 AM »

For those interested, the definitive work on this is
"the eucharistic miracle of lanciano" compiled by bruno sammacicchia - translated to english by burakowvski.

"Sanctrary of the eucharistic miracle" 1976
It is very hard to get hold of (try somewhere like abebooks, for an old copy) , but well worth the read: also and interestingly "prof oduardo linoli" who conducted the research is certainly provable as a heavyweight scientist, with many publications listed on PUBMED to his name, including a paper on this.

I do not understand why the conversation on this thread has (to an outsiders view) focussed on the detail of whether the bread was leavened - than the last supper defining the meaning of  "this is my body, this is my blood" and the command  in john 6:54 - that christians should indeed drink the blood, eat the body.....

Perhaps an orthodox could explain what rift if any exists on this?
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« Reply #32 on: October 12, 2010, 06:14:22 PM »

Okay, I have to say that from my research, the time we are discussing, around 700 A.D. Lanciano was not under Roman control but under Lombard control.

Around 700 AD Lanciano was part of the Byzantine provinces of Italy.  It was under Byzantium (i.e., Constantinople) from 610 AD to the late 8th century

Sources say:

"During fall of the Western Roman Empire, Lanciano was sacked by the Goths, and was destroyed during the Lombard invasion (c. 571 AD). A new settlement was then created around a castle built by the new rulers. In 610, however, it was conquered by the Byzantines, who annexed it to the Duchy of ''Teate'' (Chieti) and allowed the trades to restart. In the late 8th century Lanciano was conquered by the Franks, who included it in the Duchy of Spoleto."


From what I've been able to read so far there is nothing I've yet come across to indicate that the Byzantines lost control control of Lanciano between 610 and the late 8th Century. So far it looks like you are right that the East Romans (Byzantines) were in power and controlled Lanciano. However that does not at all make it impossible that unleavened bread was used and seems to lend credence to the story in my mind. Anyone reading this can do fifteen minutes of research on wiki or wherever looking up the Lombards, Duchy of Spoleto, Lanciano, Exarchate of Ravenna, and see just how turbulent and confusing it was during the early middle ages. Borders shifted all the time and your control of any given area was based on the cities you controlled. The early middle ages were the most chaotic in the history of the Italian peninsula with constant civil war and foreign invasions. It was also very turbulent in terms of the Faith of the people. There were Catholics (Orthodox) and there were Arians. But there was also the liturgical rites may have conflicted between Lombards and Romans. I've not read any definitive history of the liturgy Western Europe that has affirmed or denied specific rites in specific areas at specific times. Lanciano may have had a community of Lombards or whoever who followed liturgical practices that differed from the Eastern Roman such as unleavened bread.
However this is as far as I'm willing to venture on this. I think the part of the story having to do with the bread and wine changing to body and blood at the "words of institution" was likely added centuries later when people understood this to be the time the change occurred.
I don't want to start a storm and open this up again because as an Orthodox Christian I don't, as I wrote earlier in this topic, believe that unleavened bread for the Eucharist is of apostolic origin and as the Sigillion of 1583 very specifically anathematizes those who would use it and say that it is. However what brought me to Orthodoxy was seeking the truth and I have no intention to ever stop seeking the truth. Additionally it is not un-Orthodox to state that during the time of the early Middle Ages the use of unleavened bread may have been considered acceptable. The Church has had periods of time when additions or innovations came about and seemed useful for a time but then were seen to be overall detrimental to the faith and not of Apostolic origin and were then abolished.
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