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Author Topic: Reception of the Holy Host  (Read 1902 times) Average Rating: 0
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surajiype
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« on: September 14, 2005, 04:06:32 AM »


 I read some of the writings of the fathers, and it seems to me that, in the early church it was the rule to receive the Eucharist into ones hand from the priest .

In the IO Indian tradition as in the Syrian Orthodox tradition , the priest drops the host into the recipients mouth with a spoon.  What are the traditions in the other OO and EO churches.

Why are the reasons for this change.

Regards

Suraj Iype
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Jonathan
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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2005, 03:12:08 PM »

In the Coptic Church the priest places the Body in our mouths, but we hold cloths in our hands and raise them to cover our mouths as was done when the Body was placed in the hand.  We later receive the Blood from a spoon.  I've heard a number of explanations for the change, ranging from piety to concern of people taking Communion in thier hand and then leaving without consuming It, I don't know what the real reason(s) were.
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Salpy
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« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2005, 08:55:28 PM »

I heard something similar, that the reason for the change had to do with some people taking the Holy Body and doing something improper with it after church.

Evidently, the original practice was to put the Holy Body into people's hands.  However, there was some heretical group--probably gnostic--whose members would take the Holy Communion home with them and then use it to perform their own secret rituals.  Something like that.  So to safeguard against this, the priests began to put the Communion directly into people's mouths.

In the Armenian Church we don't use communion spoons.  In fact I think communion spoons may have been condemned at some early council.  The priest just takes the Holy Body, which has been dipped in the Holy Blood, and puts it directly into the person's mouth.
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surajiype
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« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2005, 10:54:15 AM »

Thanks Salpy and Jonathon,

 Actually even I need to elaborate, the host in wine, is dropped with a spoon only in the case of infants. The adults are given the Eucharist in a similar way as mentioned by  Jonathon .

 I presume inunction, is the dipping of the Bread into the wine, is this the practise in the EO churches.
Also I have heard that the Armenian church does not mix water with the wine. Is that the case.?
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« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2005, 11:18:19 AM »

Also I have heard that the Armenian church does not mix water with the wine. Is that the case.?

that's right.
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Arystarcus
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« Reply #5 on: September 16, 2005, 02:13:10 AM »

Also I have heard that the Armenian church does not mix water with the wine. Is that the case.?

that's right.

This is most interesting!

I would like to know more about this practice - is this done in all the Oriental Churches, or just in the Armenian Church?

Are there any specific reasons why this is done?

In Christ,
Aaron
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djrak
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« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2005, 03:12:56 PM »

This is most interesting!

I would like to know more about this practice - is this done in all the Oriental Churches, or just in the Armenian Church?

Are there any specific reasons why this is done?

In Christ,
Aaron
Why does it surprise you? It is the Holy Tradition. I dont mean that those who mix are in error but Jesus didnt mix water with wine at the last supper. I know that water is added because blood +water came out when the soldier pierced Jesus' body and that it symbolizes the old and new covenents or somethingÂÂ  Huh
maybe others can shed more light on this?
« Last Edit: September 16, 2005, 03:14:10 PM by djrak » Logged

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Salpy
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« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2005, 10:36:26 PM »

I don't know the official reason for not mixing water with the Holy Blood.  The only thing I've heard is that Christ didn't mix water with it, and it would be presumptuous to "improve" on the way Christ did it.  Something like that.

Other OO churches do mix water with the Holy Blood.  I think the water is also warmed up.

Another difference, besides the water and the communion spoon, is that we use unleavened bread.  This tradition is ancient in the Armenian Church, predating the Roman Catholic use of unleavened bread.  Again, I don't know the official reason, but I've heard that it has to do with Christ being sinless.  Leaven, I guess, represents sin.  Other OO churches use leavened bread, like the EO's do.
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EkhristosAnesti
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« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2005, 11:06:06 PM »

The reason that the Coptic Church mixes the wine with water, and uses leavened bread, is based on the belief that Christ did these things Himself.

According to the Liturgical Tradition of the Coptic Church, the priest chants at the Consecration: “Likewise after supper He took the Chalice, and mixed it of wine and water.”

Regarding the use of leavened bread, H.G. Bishop Angelos states in his article on the Coptic Faith: “The Coptic Church also uses ordinary (that is, leavened) bread, for the offering. The Coptic Church has always taught, what most scholars now acknowledge, that the Last Supper took place one day before the Passover, and thus Christ used leavened bread.”

With respect to the symbolic significance of this, Fr Tadros Malaty comments in his book Christ in the Eucharist, page 103: “The holy bread is leavened…for the yeast refers to our wickedness, which Jesus carried in His Holy Body and entered into the fire of the Cross.”

Peace.
« Last Edit: September 16, 2005, 11:09:03 PM by EkhristosAnesti » Logged

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Salpy
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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2005, 12:28:58 AM »

That is interesting about the symbolism of the leaven in the bread.  So in both our traditions, the leaven represents sin, but we have different emphases, so our practices differ.  The Armenians want to emphasize Christ's sinlessness, so we leave the leaven out.  The Copts want to emphasize the fact that He took our sins upon Himself, so you put the leaven in.

I have heard that in the EO tradition, the leaven represents life and the Resurrection.  Is this true?

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surajiype
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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2005, 04:55:06 AM »

Like in the coptic liturgy, the Syriac- Malayalam liturgy also says that, Christ mixed wine with water .  The use of the unleavened bread is also interesting. Some of the sources I looked up said, that until the early 8th century, even the Latins used the leavened bread, and use of the unleavened bread was encouraged only because handling leaven was proving difficult in winter. The Catholic encyclopedia however lists a whole lot of theological reasons for the use of the same .
  Some Armenian sites, said that according to tradition , Gregory the Illuminator used the unleavened bread , so the same is being done.
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EkhristosAnesti
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« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2005, 05:52:49 AM »

Quote
So in both our traditions, the leaven represents sin

It’s actually a tradition grounded in the Old Testament: Exodus 12:19: "For seven days no yeast is to be found in your houses. And whoever eats anything with yeast in it must be cut off from the community of Israel, whether he is an alien or native-born."

Quote
The Armenians want to emphasize Christ's sinlessness, so we leave the leaven out.

That’s interesting. The sinlessness of Christ is also an aspect considered in the Coptic Church with regards to the the selection of the Qorban that is to be consecrated, however in a different manner; at the beginning of the offeratory, whilst the Deacons and Congregation chant the 41 Kyrie Eleison’s, a deacon presents the priest with an odd number of loaves at the door of the altar. The priest then examines and inspects each loaf carefully, and finally selects the one that has the least number of physical defects, as representative of the “unblemished” loaf that is then used as the one to be consecrated and transformed during the Holy Liturgy.

Peace.
« Last Edit: September 17, 2005, 05:58:45 AM by EkhristosAnesti » Logged

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Tags: communion diversity in practice Indian Orthodox Syriac Orthodox Coptic Orthodox Church Armenian Church 
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