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Author Topic: respect for particles of the Eucharist  (Read 2156 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: December 27, 2003, 08:10:30 AM »

When one goes to church and kisses the cross after liturgy, one inevitably comes in contact with Holy Communion even if one has not partaken. This is because communicants have kissed the cross beforehand, so even though there lips may have been wiped, there should still be an invisible film on them, which would get transferred onto the cross.

I have never communicated as I am not yet spiritually prepared for this, but I do kiss the cross in church. After I do so, ought I to abstain from putting things to my mouth for a certain period of time, out of respect for particles, however microscopic, of the holiest substance on Earth? I don't know who thinks about this, but I have come to the realization that if I cover my mouth to cough or scratch my lips or mustache, microscopic particles will get on my hands, and my hands will touch who knows what dirty thing later. Then I will play my bagpipes and the instrument will become filled with at least a few microscopic particles of it. Then I will stop playing and the mouthpiece of the pipes may touch my hair, my cheek, my shirt etc. Also, I will go to lunch and throw the fork/straw/cup/napkin into the garbage! And so on, I could find more examples of this.

So how much is expected of us? Ought I to avoid contact with things you put to your mouth after kissing a priest's cross (or his hand) and if so, for how long? And once I start communicating, how long should I wait before I eat etc?
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« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2003, 09:48:55 AM »

I wouldn't worry quite so much. God the Word has become flesh and therefore participates completely in His creation. You seem to approach the mysteries with devotion and care, which is what is required. Super-scrupulousness is not required. You cannot dishonour Christ if your heart is pure. In some sense Christ is already in some relation to all of His creation and is not contaminated by it but rather participates in it as Redeemer.

What you are coming to understand is that the whole world is filled with the presence of Christ and that therefore we should be careful how we live at all times. Think of all that the priest touches and all that touches what the priest touches etc etc. The whole world is filled both physically in the sense you describe,and spiritually, with the holy presence of Christ.

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« Reply #2 on: December 30, 2003, 07:26:47 PM »

I agree -don't worry so much!  What has worrying EVER accomplished?!?  Don't let your mind go nuts, either.
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« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2009, 09:15:48 AM »

Can anyone explain to me, please, what happens to the red napkin (used by the deacon when the priest distributes the Holy Eucharist) and to the Blood of Christ which may have soaked into it?
« Last Edit: March 13, 2009, 09:16:34 AM by Michał » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2009, 11:22:42 AM »

It's laundered. As someone already pointed out, Christ fills all in all. All of His creation is upheld by His power and His might. We need not become super-scrupulous (as was mentioned) and imagine microscopic particles of the Eucharist being somehow polluted. We need to take far more care of ourselves. Having consumed the Body and Blood of our Lord do we then go out into the world and pollute His temple with gossip, filthy thoughts, anger, pride and so forth? This is far more likely and far more serious than what has been imagined in this thread. Just my two cents' worth.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2009, 11:23:52 AM by Douglas » Logged

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« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2009, 11:23:56 AM »


We've always been told that it is "preferable" not to go up and kiss the cross after the Divine Liturgy (nor venerate icons), IF you have partaken of Holy Communion.

Additionally, my mother always made sure we didn't eat anything that day that would force us to remove things from our mouths - such as fried chicken (on bone), ribs, apples (core), etc.  Chewing gum was definitely a No-no!

Furthermore, my mom never let us take a "nap" when we got home, lest we slobber on our pillows!

I was always taught the "importance" of Holy Communion, and the respect It is due.

As for the cloth that is held beneath the Chalice, if some of the "Blood" has fallen on it accidentally (often happens with little children), the priest will usually "suck" it out afterwards.  If that does not work, then he will burn it and use a new one the next time around.

One time some Holy Communion had fallen from the recipient's mouth, rolled off the cloth and landed on the carpeted floor.  Immediately, once the Holy Particles had been picked up, that section of carpeted floor was marked off, so nobody would step on it.  After Liturgy, that section of carpet was actually cut out, and burned, and the floor got patched with a bit of carpet cut out from the side of solea (where nobody would notice it missing.)

While God IS everywhere, His Gifts to us, must be treated with the utmost of respect.

 
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« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2009, 11:34:26 AM »

Respect for Holy Communion is paramount.

The cloth that is used to catch any particles or drippings is eventually burned after it is no longer useable. One should not kiss anything after having communed for several hours. We should not spit or brush or teeth for several hours after communing.

If we cut ourselves by accident after communing, we should wipe up the blood and burn the tissue.
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« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2009, 11:53:45 AM »

I would agree that respect for the Body and Blood of our Lord is paramount. But it strikes me as odd that we're missing just as important a fact: that we can far more easily pollute the temple of our Lord (our bodies) during coffee hour with arguments, anger, gossip, self-righteousness, seeing the splinter in our brother's eye and failing to see the plank in our own, becoming upset with the priest or choir or deacon or altar boys or folks arriving late or leaving the liturgy early and so forth. When we commit these sins so shortly after receiving the Eucharist, it seems to me that we do far more disrespect to our Lord than what has been suggested in this thread. I'm not suggesting that we not take care in those regards but it seems to me we're missing the far more obvious and likely pollution of our Lord's Body.
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« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2009, 12:02:10 PM »


Well then....we must try our best NOT to get so easily angered.

However, that holds true "always", not just post Holy Communion.  We should ALWAYS try to be humble, kind and loving, not judgmental.

Besides, one should not even approach Holy Communion if they are in "that" sour a state of mind, lest it do them harm, instead of good.
You should harbor no anger or resentment towards anyone before you approach, otherwise, step away.


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« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2009, 12:06:43 PM »

I would agree that respect for the Body and Blood of our Lord is paramount. But it strikes me as odd that we're missing just as important a fact: that we can far more easily pollute the temple of our Lord (our bodies) during coffee hour with arguments, anger, gossip, self-righteousness, seeing the splinter in our brother's eye and failing to see the plank in our own, becoming upset with the priest or choir or deacon or altar boys or folks arriving late or leaving the liturgy early and so forth. When we commit these sins so shortly after receiving the Eucharist, it seems to me that we do far more disrespect to our Lord than what has been suggested in this thread. I'm not suggesting that we not take care in those regards but it seems to me we're missing the far more obvious and likely pollution of our Lord's Body.

How about both/and instead of either/or? That's how I see it.
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« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2009, 12:09:18 PM »

Respect for Holy Communion is paramount.

If we cut ourselves by accident after communing, we should wipe up the blood and burn the tissue.

Isn't that a bigotry? Christ sanctifies us with Holy Communion. I know that people get rid of that state by bad works but it's not sudden.

It's strange that for, let say, six hours we cannot spit/brush teeth/trow out our blood and after that period we suddenly lost the Grace but we are allowed to tho that again.

Such an attitude can lead us to even stranger questions like: If one takes Holy Eucharists but after the Divine Liturgy, during the coffee hour he eats some unfresh cake and brings up, will the Sacrament be valid? You see it's completely odd.

I've been taught in the same way as LisaSymonenko (only without that taking naps on Sundays Smiley) but I think that we should act in such a way only right after receiving the Sacrament and then behave normally.
« Last Edit: March 13, 2009, 12:33:23 PM by mike » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2009, 12:51:53 PM »

Respect for Holy Communion is paramount.

Of course I agree, Father. 

Quote
The cloth that is used to catch any particles or drippings is eventually burned after it is no longer useable.

Quite right, in my humble opinion. 

Quote
One should not kiss anything after having communed for several hours.

I agree.  I look at it from a positive perspective. (I am not saying that yours is negative.)   My lips have been sanctified, so I do not kiss icons.  This brings up some interesting pastoral questions, I suppose.  I remember that when I first started serving in the altar, I was always told not to kiss the hand of the priest when handing him the censer after having received the Gifts.  But then I noticed that when the bishop was there, people were always kissing his hand, no matter what.  Hmmm.  I suppose some people are scandalised if the bishop is not accorded reverence in this way, I don't know.  And of course similar kinds of situations crop up, with people kissing icons or the cross etc. after holy communion. 

Quote
We should not spit or brush or teeth for several hours after communing.....
If we cut ourselves by accident after communing, we should wipe up the blood and burn the tissue.

Here we are getting into territory where I think we might have to agree to disagree.  IIRC, we have had similar discussions surrounding this kind of thing in the past.  I know that this is what you have been taught, and I respect it, but for various reasons, I might find this advice to be too scrupulous.

 I would be very interested to see any further observations you might have concerning this whole issue, if you have any.   If not, that is fine too.  Smiley
« Last Edit: March 13, 2009, 12:54:54 PM by Pravoslavbob » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2009, 01:12:23 PM »

The cloth that is used to catch any particles or drippings. . .

Is there any specified name for this cloth in Greek, Chuch Slavonic or English?
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« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2009, 03:49:05 PM »

The cloth that is used to catch any particles or drippings. . .

Is there any specified name for this cloth in Greek, Chuch Slavonic or English?

It's called the "maktro" in Greek.
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« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2009, 04:44:45 PM »

I've heard something like ye-lee-ton. Does it look familiar to you, Greeks?
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« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2009, 05:13:40 PM »



Such an attitude can lead us to even stranger questions like: If one takes Holy Eucharists but after the Divine Liturgy, during the coffee hour he eats some unfresh cake and brings up, will the Sacrament be valid? You see it's completely odd.


THis reminds me of a scene from Frank McCourt's "Angela's Ashes".  One day after receiving Communion, he gets sick in his backyard, afterwhich is grandmother drags him back to church with the cry of "Jesus is in my backyard!". 
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« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2009, 05:56:41 PM »

Is there any specified name for this cloth in Greek, Chuch Slavonic or English?

It is called a lention in Greek.  In English it is just called a Communion cloth or purificator.
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« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2009, 09:59:46 PM »

Is there any specified name for this cloth in Greek, Chuch Slavonic or English?

It is called a lention in Greek.  In English it is just called a Communion cloth or purificator.
It is called a Maktron.
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