Sunday, April 30, 2006

Thanks to Whitehall for Lectionary Central Tip

Here is a nice resource for weekly and daily visits. It's called Lectionary Central. Give it a go!

Saturday, April 29, 2006

St. Catherine of Siena

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Grant, we beseech thee, Almighty God:
that we who here observe the heavenly
birthday of thy blessed Virgin Catherine;
may in such wise rejoice in her yearly festival,
that we may learn of her godliness. By her prayers,
may we share in the mystery of Christ's death
and rejoice in the revelation of His glory,
for He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Cranmer and Andrewes: Zwinglian and Catholic?

I have recently returned to reading Dix' work The Shape of the Liturgy. As I sit here in the postgraduate study room, I can not but help to think that my thesis concerning Andrewes' critique of the XVI century liturgical and doctrinal views of the Eucharist is indeed what his sermons and writings are; a critique of the English Reformation! From Eucharistic theology to the ecclesiology of the Church, Cranmer and Andrewes had significant differences. I have no idea what possessed Cranmer to do 1552 BCP. It's simply lacking in so may ways. Thankfully it didn't stay around very long. In Dix' work on The Shape of the Liturgy he speaks of the theology behind Cranmer's changes from 1549. Which, by the way, was not acceptable by the majority of the nation when it came about but nonetheless people such as Gardner could use it provided the sense in which the Church has understood the language used by Cranmer was the intent. Cranmer did not like Gardner's opinion of `49 so set out to change it and adjusted the shape of the liturgy to match is theology of the Eucharist. Dix writes,
What had largly assisted the general misunderstanding of 1549 was its retention of the traditional Shape of the Liturgy. Cranmer realised that this was a mistake if he wanted to the new belief to be adopted; and in 1552 he made radical changes in this in order to bring out the doctrinal implications of 1549. But the wording of the prayers of 1549 needed no such drastic treatment. Rearranged in their new order they served with remarkably few changes to express teh full Zwinglian doctrine -- in itself a reasonable vindication of Cranmer's claim that this had been their most obvious meaning all along.
When one examines his Defense in light of Andrewes' work, it will not be difficult to see the undeniable difference between Cranmer and Andrewes. T.S. Eliot is right that Andrewes is the first of the Great English Catholics.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Housing in Rome

I was hoping that my entering a plea on here for housing in Rome from 4 June - 29 July would bring some positive results. I am in desperate need of finding a place soon so that I can get my airline tickets at a reasonable rate. If any of the readers have any connections in Rome for someone who would be willing to put up with someone who would be low level care, that would be splendid. I would be willing to offer something for the trouble but as a PhD student with a large family of six children, I do not have a lot that I can afford. I will get all of my meals and transportation sorted if I could find a willing soul to put me up for this time while I study Latin. If you know of someone, please contact me to let me know. Thanks in advance!

Another option is my raising of the funds to go. I have searched the Internet and found that I can rent a room for about 700 Euros per month. So, if you know anyone interested in supporting me in going, I would also be grateful for that. In the end, this endeavour is for the good of the whole Church as I go to learn Latin to the degree that I will be able to translate theological material that is yet to be translated during my future studies once I finish my acamdemic work. Thank you for your prayers nonetheless.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Charity in the Sacrament: Thomas A` Kempis

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There is not much in the world of reading theology like returning to those great classics for a healthy dose of humility. I am thinking of writers like Thomas A` Kempis' work The Imitation of Christ. In his book on the Sacrament he has a chapter on the Charity of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. He writes,
O most sweet and tender Jesus, what reverence, what giving of thanks is due to Thee with perpetual praise for the receiving of Thy sacred Body and Blood, the dignity whereof no man is found able to express. But what shall I think upon in this Communion in approaching my Lord, whom I am not able worthily to honour, and nevertheless whom I long devoutly to receive? What shall be better and more healthful meditation for me, than utter humiliation of myself before Thee, and exaltation of Thine infinite goodness towards me? I praise Thee, O my God, and exalt Thee for evermore. I despise myself, and cast myself down before Thee into the deep of my vileness.

Behold, Thou art the Saint of saints and I the refuse of sinners; behold, Thou stoopest unto me who am not worthy to look upon Thee; behold, Thou comest unto me, Thou willest to be with me, Thou invitest me to Thy feast. Thou willest to give me the heavenly food and bread of angels to eat; none other, in truth, than Thyself, The living bread, which didst descend from heaven; and givest life to the world.

Behold, whence this love proceedeth! what manner of condescension shineth forth herein. What great iving of thanks and praise is due unto Thee for these benefits! Oh how salutary and profitable Thy purpose when Thou didst ordain this! How sweet and pleasant the feast when Thou didst give Thyself for food! Oh how admirable is thy working, O Lord, how mighty Thy power how unspeakable Thy truth! For Thou didst speak the word, and all things were made; and this is done which Thou hast commanded.

The Imitation of Christ

Monday, April 24, 2006

New Books to Get

My spiritual director, Canon Arthur Middleton received word that his book Towards a Renewed Priesthood has been republished at Gracewing Publishing. You can pick it up for £9.99. When there has recently been a lessening of the priest/theologian entering the Church for vocation, this book is a healthy reminder of the type of priest the Church needs. It is a modern book with a classical approach to the vocation of the priesthood much along the lines of the classic book by George Herbert, The Country Parson. If you are thinking about what to get your priest for 'clergy appreciation day,' or if you know someone who is soon to be ordained, this is a book to get!

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Another book that you need to purchase is by my dear friend Dr. Marianne Dorman. Her new book on Lancelot Andrewes is out and can be ordered from Marianne or Rosedog Books. This book is titled Lancelot Andrewes Mentor of Reformed Catholicism in the Post-Reformation English Church 1555-1626. This book is based on her doctoral work on Lancelot Andrewes. For any who would love to get a scholarly picture of Andrewes, this is one of the books to have.

Going to Rome!

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I know this title will perk up the eyes of the readers but it is true. It is necessary for me to reveal this news to you. I received word today that Fr. Reginald Foster OCD has accepted me into his summer Latin school for 8 weeks this summer in Rome. Ha! I bet you thought this was an announcement about my swimming the Tiber! Let's see how many rumours get started from reading the first line! Anyway, Fr. Foster is a legend around Rome and his students leave quite knowledgeable about the language from what I understand. I am looking now for a place to stay (someone to put me up!) so that I can attend this intensive and advanced Latin course. I hate to be away from my family for eight weeks but my wife has suggested that it would be wise due to the direction of my research that I have a solid grasp on Latin. So, I have much to learn!! Rhea will fly over a couple of times to see me for long weekends, which will make the time away a bit easier and give me something to look forward to on the weekends when she can come. Latin is six days a week and quite intensive but it will be worth the effort and time for my future research.

Please pray for my good fortune in finding a place to stay while I am there at a very reasonable price.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

A Very Blessed Pascha

I would like to wish all of my Orthodox friends a very blessed Pascha Season! The Orthodox celebrated Easter today and I trust that their renewal of God's love in the celebration of the Resurrection of our Lord moved them all into a more faithful Resurrection Life in Christ! Happy Pascha!

Eucharistic Fundamentalism?

Update: There is a discussion of this post going on at Reformed Catholicism. Feel free to carry on the conversation at either place.

In reading a fellow Anglican's blog today, I ran across this piece on the Eucharist by Rev. Douglas Wilson. He writes,
But Jesus did not tell us to watch and adore. He told us to take and eat, take and drink. And in our obedience, Christ is with us. Christ inhabits the obedience, and the bread and wine are not obedient. Christ is in the participles, in the eating, and in the drinking. Christ is present in His body, and we are that body. As we take the elements and do what we were told to do (which did not include bowing down to them, adoring them, etc.) we are taken by the Holy Spirit and are knit together with Christ and the rest of His body. The elements sitting on an altar by themselves are nothing, and do nothing. But the elements are the instrument that God uses to accomplish His purposes. In order for an instrument to do what it is intended to do, it is necessary to do with it what we were told to do with it, which is eat, drink, and believe.

To take the elements of bread and wine, and separate them from the sacramental action, the sacramental participles, is a mistake of the first order. It is to remove an animated thing from the animating principle, thereby killing it, and then worshipping it as though it were alive by itself.
There are numerous issues here that need fleshing out and it would take a dissertation to do so but let me just hit the key issues I see that are very problematic. The very first thing is that Mr. Wilson gives the impression that God gave him the scriptures to read on his own without the Church. He comes to these opinions without much authority behind him other than his own mere opinion. This is the major Puritan problem that is passed off as sola scriptura and one's private opinion becomes the pure undefiled word that is not tainted by outside sources like an institutionalised Church. Yet this nullifies the Eucharistic development from the Upper Room to Paul's discourse with the Corinthians.

The second thing is the phrase that "Christ inhabits the obedience and the bread and wine are not obedient. Christ is in the participles, in the eating and in the drinking." What the heck does this mean? The scriptures are given to us to read and understand in the context of the Church as a worshipping community and because Mr. Wilson can't figure out how Christ makes himself present with the elements themselves doesn't give him the right to make up new interpretations of presence that are foreign to the historical Church. There is no one who would disagree that the efficacy of the Sacrament is applied through the actual eating and drinking. But, there are those who cannot come to the Eucharist who benefit from the Church's sacrificial offering too. The Church has taught that it is a benefit for the living and the dead. Anglicans, like Andrewes and many others believed no less the same on this issue. The major problem is that Mr. Wilson believes that the elements on the altar are nothing until they are eaten. Well, that's not what the Church has taught by any stretch of the means. Nor does it make sense with the Apostle Paul's own words from 1 Corinthians 10 and 11. The presence of Christ precedes the eating of Him. Whether one is more inclined to look at consecration from an Eastern view with the emphasis on the epiclesis or from the Western view with the emphasis on the words of institution does not make a difference about what the Eucharist IS. The fact that the command to eat was given does not nullify the Sacramental presence of Christ in the elements. Presence is not dependent upon eating, presence is something that God does, not man.

Lancelot Andrewes addressed a lot of these issues in an answer to Cardinal du Perron. The reply of Andrewes is in reference to the work Replique `a la Response du serenissime Roy de la Grand Bretagne, `a Paris, 1620. Perron died in 1618. To this answer, the whole of the xviiith chapter of the First book is subjoined, and numbers within the margins correspond with the several sections of Andrewes’s reply. There are also portions of the xxth chapter and the Fifth book, (which especially relates to the Controversy between Bellarmine and Andrewes on the Invocation of Saints), has been inserted in the places where they are referred to. For a detailed account of this controversy, see Dupin’s Eccl. Hist., xvii Book v. under the head, Card. Perron.

I. Belief of Christ in the Sacrament sub species.
Arguing against Zwingli to Perron Andrewes confirms that Zwingli “To avoid Est in the Church of Rome’s sense, he fell to be all for Significat, and nothing for Est at all. And whatsoever went further than significant he took to savour of the carnal presence. For which, if the Cardinal mislike him, so do we. And so he doth not well (against his own knowledge) to charge his opinion upon us.”

II. The external Adoration of the Sacrament.
This second is an act says Andrewes avec gestes et adorations externs. Arguing from how Cyril taught concerning how the Church is to receive the Cup Andrewes explains that they too adore Christ in the gesture of bowing. Touching on how Perron would have the Church receive the Eucharist Andrewes says,
for he would have the party that receiveth it, kuptein, that is, to bow himself, and cast his eyes to the ground; that is, in humble and reverent manner to do it. And so do we. And tropo proskunheseos, after the manner of adoring, amounteth not to adoring: for after the manner, or as men use to do, that adore, is a term qualified, and restrained to the outward manner. In which manner our Church enjoineth it to be received…And we (by the grace of God) hold the Sacrament to be venerable, and with all due respect to be handled and received.
Having corrected Perron’s citation of Augustine from the XCVIth Psalm to the XCVIIIth he writes, “But upon the 98 Psalm these words are, which (I dare say) he means:, No one sets out to eateth that flesh, unless he hath first worshiped, which I trust, no Christian man will ever refuse to do; that is, to adore the flesh of Christ.” He goes on to remind Perron that “for Saint Augustine presently is careful to warn his auditors, that the word manducat there is to be spiritually understood, and he bringeth in Christ thus speaking. Andrewes was agreeing that there is a proper veneration of the physical Sacrament but not a worshipping of it with divine qualities. Andrewes goes on to turn Perron’s own use of Theodoret against him showing that the Sacramental Symbols, after the consecration, go not from their own nature, but abide in their former substance, shape, and kind. Andrewes concludes his answer saying,
And he gains nothing by it; for proskuneitai in the Cardinal’s sense, may be taken pour venerer, (that is, to honour and reverence;) and is to be taken in that sense, and cannot, here, be taken in any other. For the Symbols so abiding, it is easily known no divine adoration can be used to them, nor any other than hath been said.
Andrewes’s stance against divine adoration of the Sacrament is tied to his denial of transubstantiation. Having gone to examine Theodoret Dialogue II for myself, I too find that it is strange that Perron would use this passage that speaks against what he is seeking to argue for. Contextually, Andrewes is correct to argue that the sense in which Theodoret is using proskuneitai is with reference to giving reverence and welcoming respectfully. In that sense, Andrewes agrees with the custom of bowing and venerating (venerationem) the Sacrament as a symbol of God’s divine presence and worshipping the Christ of the Sacrament.

III. Reservation of the Sacrament

Andrewes does not so much as argue against reservation as a theological problem but sees it as a practical issue developed from the unstable times in the early Church when it was not for certain when and where they would be able to receive it again. Arguing from the Council of Saragossa, Can. III in the year 381 and of the Council of Toledo, Can. XIV. in the year 405, those who continue the practice of taking the Sacrament home for their own use are to be corrected upon pains of being cast out of the Church as sacrilegious persons. For the sick, Andrewes argues, the Sacrament ought to be taken to them and is reserved for that purpose but what the original intention of sacramental reservation was for is not needed in his day as there is much opportunity to come to Church to receive the Blessed Sacrament.

IV. Communion under one kind
Not much interaction, but see his sermons. He understands it to be a novel practice.

V. The Eucharist a Sacrifice
According to the Roman teaching of the Mass, the Eucharist serves two purposes: that of a sacrifice and a sacrament. Andrewes did not have a theological problem with the sacrifice of the Mass but actually embraced it with strong Catholic leanings save the doctrine of transubstantiation. He agrees that the Eucharist has a two-fold purpose of that of sacrifice and sacrament. He says that it is a fulfilment of the Old Testament sacrifices and that it was available for the whole Church both living and the dead.

The Eucharist ever was, and by us is considered, both as a Sacrament, and as a Sacrifice. A Sacrifice is proper and applicable only to divine worship. The Sacrifice of Christ’s death did succeed to the Sacrifices of the Old Testament. The Sacrifice of Christ’s death is available for present, absent, living, dead, (yea, for them that are yet unborn.) When we say the dead, we mean it is available for the Apostles, Martyrs, and Confessors, and all (because we are all members of one body:) these no man will deny. In a word we hold with Saint Augustine in the very same chapter which the Cardinal citeth, as far as this Sacrifice of the flesh and blood, before Christ’s coming, by means of the likeness of the repayment that was promised; according to the suffering of Christ, by means of the true sacrifice of himself being handed over; after Christ’s coming [ascension], by means of the memorial celebrated in the Sacrament.

VI. Altars
Andrewes moves from his discussion of Sacrifice to Altars. His point is that since there is little to no difference on Sacrifice, there will be no difference about the Altar. Andrewes writes,
The holy Eucharist being considered as a Sacrifice, (in the representation of the breaking of bread, and the pouring forth the cup,) the same is fitly called an Altar; which again is as fitly called a Table, the Eucharist being considered as a Sacrament, which is nothing else but a distribution and an application of the Sacrifice to the several receivers…So that the matter of Altars, makes no difference in the face of our Church
. Andrewes’s position of Altar stems from his understanding of sacrifice in that the Eucharist is for a twofold purpose: Sacrifice and Sacrament. We offer Christ in the Sacrifice and have applied to us the One Sacrifice of Christ at Calvary. In the Sacrament we feed upon the Body and the Blood sacramentally and receive the forgiveness of sins and the comforts that come with being united to Christ. Hence there is no difference of Sacrifice in Andrewes’s theology from that of the Catholic Church except that for Him the notion of transubstantiation is an opinion of the Schoolmen and not of the essence of faith.

Now the above is much different than what Mr. Wilson wants to argue for and against. So, am I to believe that I can receive the presence of Christ by listening to the participles being read or do I have to do something else? If I must eat and drink, the presence of Christ must be objectively present in the elements if that is the way Jesus determined us to receive His Body and Blood. One doesn't receive by participles but by taking unto themselves the Body and Blood of Christ that is objectively present within the elements. The adoration of Christ in the Eucharist is the bowing down and worshipping the One who, in love and grace, condescends to us in this way. It has incarnational theology running throughout. When we eat, we do not eat bread and when we drink we do not drink wine; we eat the Body and drink the Blood of Christ. I beg to differ with Mr. Wilson that the elements sitting on the altar by themselves are nothing. That is simply beyond comprehension. When do they become something? Only when they touch the wetness of our tongues? Did Jesus say, this becomes my body and blood when it touches your tongue? No, he told them that they were His Body and Blood before he gave it to them. They were the very Body and Blood of Christ that Jesus offered to the Father for death for the life of the world. It is that Body and Blood that were first offered at that Eucharist. So, we don't bow down and adore bread and wine or worship them, we bow down and adore and worship the Saviour who adheres in the elements that have been Eucharistised into the Body and Blood of Christ. As Gregory of Nyssa would term it, they are transelementised. I wonder what Mr. Wilson's prayer of "unconsecration" sounds like after he has prayed the prayer of consecration to "set these elements apart from their ordinary use," as is the custom in most Reformed traditions. I never got my head around that one! So, yes, we are to eat and drink and believe but believe what? That in your eating and in your drinking you eat the Body and drink the Blood of the Lord Jesus Christ and you offer the memorial of His Sacrificial offering until He returns to gather His Church once and for all. We don't belive in participial verbage, we believe we receive the Body and Blood of Jesus in those elements that moved from the altar to our mouths. And we worship and bow down to the Jesus we receive. Adoration and worship are a part of what we are to do: hoc facite in meam commemorationem.

The point that Mr. Wilson obviously wants to make about the necessity of eating and drinking is fine and the Church would agree with him and back him on that fact. The infrequency of communion was a major abuse. But that is altogether another issue than the one that describes what the elements ARE on the altar after the prayer of consecration. Words mean something and Mr. Wilson is one that does not need reminding of that fact. In order for us to receive the benefits of the Eucharist, Jesus must be present in the elements. Since the elements apply anew the forgiveness of sins (covenant renewal) it must be through the instrumental means of the elements when the eating and drinking take place. It is not necessary to remove the doctrine of presence from the elements in order to possess a proper ecclesiology of communal benefits of the Eucharist. This is where Reformed brethren are falling off the wagon in my opinion.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Vincent of Lerins: The Commonitory

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Chapter XXIX. Recapitulation.
[76.] This being the case, it is now time that we should recapitulate, at the close of this second Commonitory, what was said in that and in the preceding.
We said above, that it has always been the custom of Catholics, and still is, to prove the true faith in these two ways; first by the authority of the Divine Canon, and next by the tradition of the Catholic Church. Not that the Canon alone does not of itself suffice for every question, but seeing that the more part, interpreting the divine words according to their own persuasion, take up various erroneous opinions, it is therefore necessary that the interpretation of divine Scripture should be ruled according to the one standard of the Church’s belief, especially in those articles on which the foundations of all Catholic doctrine rest.
[77.] We said likewise, that in the Church itself regard must be had to the consentient voice of universality equally with that of antiquity, lest we either be torn from the integrity of unity and carried away to schism, or be precipitated from the religion of antiquity into heretical novelties. We said, further, that in this same ecclesiastical antiquity two points are very carefully and earnestly to be held in view by those who would keep clear of heresy: first, they should ascertain whether any decision has been given in ancient times as to the matter in question by the whole priesthood of the Catholic Church, with the authority of a General Council: and, secondly, if some new question should arise on which no such decision has been given, they should then have recourse to the opinions of the holy Fathers, of those at least, who, each in his own time and place, remaining in the unity of communion and of the faith, were accepted as approved masters; and whatsoever these may be found to have held, with one mind and with one consent, this Ought to be accounted the true and Catholic doctrine of the Church, without any doubt or scruple. [78.] Which lest we should seem to allege presumptuously on our own warrant rather than on the authority of the Church, we appealed to the example of the holy council which some three years ago was held at Ephesus96 in Asia, in the consulship of Bassus and Antiochus, where, when question was raised as to the authoritative determining of rules of faith, lest, perchance, any profane novelty should creep in, as did the perversion of the truth at Ariminum,97 the whole body of priests there assembled, nearly two hundred in number, approved of this as the most Catholic, the most trustworthy, and the best course, viz., to bring forth into the midst the sentiments of the holy Fathers, some of whom it was well known had been martyrs, some Confessors, but all had been, and continued to the end to be, Catholic priests, in order that by their consentient determination the reverence due to ancient truth might be duly and solemnly confirmed, and the blasphemy of profane novelty condemned. Which having been done, that impious Nestorius was lawfully and deservedly adjudged to be opposed to Catholic antiquity, and contrariwise blessed Cyril to be in agreement with it. And that nothing might be wanting to the credibility of the matter, we recorded the names and the number (though we had forgotten the order) of the Fathers, according to whose consentient and unanimous judgment, both the sacred preliminaries of judicial procedure were expounded, and the rule of divine truth established. Whom, that we may strengthen our memory, it will be no superfluous labour to mention again here also.!
Chapter XXX.
The Council of Ephesus.
[79.] These then are the men whose writings, whether as judges or as witnesses, were recited in the Council: St. Peter, bishop of Alexandria, a most excellent Doctor and most blessed martyr, Saint Athanasius, bishop of the same city, a most faithful Teacher, and most eminent Confessor, Saint Theophilus, also bishop of fie same city, a man illustrious for his faith, his life, his knowledge, whose successor, the revered Cyril, now98 adorns the Alexandrian Church. And lest perchance the doctrine ratified by the Council should be thought peculiar to one city and province, there were added also those lights of Cappadocia, St. Gregory of Nazianzus, bishop and Confessor, St. Basil of Caesarea in Cappadocia, bishop and Confessor, and the other St. Gregory, St. Gregory of Nyssa, for his faith, his conversation, his integrity, and his wisdom, most worthy to be the brother of Basil. And lest Greece or the East should seem to stand alone, to prove that the Western and Latin world also have always held the same belief, there were read in the Council certain Epistles of St. Felix, martyr, and St. Julius, both bishops of Rome. And that not only the Head, but the other parts, of the world also might bear witness to the judgment of the council, there was added from the South the most blessed Cyprian, bishop of Carthage and martyr, and from the North St. Ambrose, bishop of Milan.
[80.] These all then, to the sacred number of the decalogue,99 were produced at Eph- esus as doctors, councillors, witnesses, judges. And that blessed council holding their doctrine, following their counsel, believing their witness, submitting to their judgment without haste, without foregone conclusion, without partiality, gave their determination concerning the Rules of Faith. A much greater number of the ancients might have been adduced; but it was needless, because neither was it fit that the time should be occupied by a multitude of witnesses, nor does any one suppose that those ten were really of a different mind from the rest of their colleagues.

Vincent of Lerins The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers Second Series Vol. XI.

John Johnson 'Unbloody Sacrifice'

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I have begun collecting the Library of Anglo-Catholic Theology for myself. It is a slow process but it does continue to grow. I hope to eventually have the entire library personally within my own library. One of my recent purchases has been the two-volume work by John Johnson called The Unbloody Sacrifice. With reference to a discussion going on below and tipped off by Drs. Bill Tighe and Dan Dunlap, I thought I would post someting on Johnson and how the Body and Blood become present in the Eucharist. The Caroline Divines continue to focus on the words of the priest at the words of institution that make present the Body and Blood of Christ in the elements. Later Anglican scholars (post-Restoration 1660) really focused on the epiclesis in spite of it not emphasized in the 1662 edition of the Book of Common Prayer. Johnson writes,
I believe, that nothing could acquire a greater sanctity under the Law than by being offered in sacrifice; but I apprehend tha the Eucharistical Sacrifice, that is, the representative Body and Blood of Christ, were, by the primitive Fathers, supposed to be consecrated in a more perfect manner than any sacrifice under the Law could be: for in all the Liturgies, after the oblation of the Bread and Wine as the memorials of the grand Sacrifice, there is a solemn prayer that God would send His Spirit or His Divine benediction for the further consecration of them, after they had first been offered as a Sacrifice to God. And this is the most perfect consecration that inanimate creatures are capable of; and such as consecration does apparently best fit and comport with the Eucharist, as being the most eminent mystery and hierugy that ever was instituted by Almighty God. And it is to be observed, that by this means the Eucharistical Bread and Wine are made the most perfect and consummate representatives of the Body and Blood of Christ. They are not only substituted by His appointment and command to this purpose, but they are by the power of the Spirit, which is communicated to them so often as the celebration of this mystery is repeated, made the lively efficacious Sacrament of His Body and Blood: for the Holy Spirit is Christ's invisible Divine deputy in His Church...when the Holy Spirit, Which is His invisible representative, communicates It's power and presence to teh symbols, which are His visible representatives, they do thereby become as full and authentic substitutes as it is possible for them to be; and the reader is to be advertised, that when the ancients speak of the Logos, or the Divine nature of Christ, being present in the Eucharist; or of the Sacramental Body's being united to the natural Person or Body of our Saviour; they mean the same thing as if they had expressly mentioned the Holy Spirit; becaust is it the known opinion of the ancients, and may be proved from Scripture, that whatever beneficial operations are performed in the Church are performed immediately by the Holy Ghost, and mediately only by the Father and the Son; and that it is by means of the Spirit that the Church communicates with the other two Divine Persons; and the holy Sacraments are very justly, by many of our Divines, styled the channels by which all Divine graces are derived to us.
It is interesting what he says here in this last sentence and the writings of Andrewes. Andrewes' sermons on Pentecost make this most clear and I am interested in doing a careful study of how Andrewes connects the Spirit to Eucharistic consecration.

Witin Andrewes' words, not only is the Eucharist a means by which we are comforted but it is also the means by which we taste the Lord’s goodness according to Psalm 34.8. The way we taste this goodness is through the celebration of the Eucharist as the vehicle of His Spirit.
And even that note hath not escaped the ancient Divines; to shew there is not only comfort by hearing the word, but we may also “taste of His goodness, how gracious He is,” and be “made to drink of the Spirit.” That not only by the letter we read, and the word we hear, but by the flesh we eat, and the blood we drink at His table, we be made partakers of His Spirit, and of the comfort of it. By no more kindly way passeth His Spirit than by His flesh and blood, which are vehicular Spiritus, ‘the proper carriages to convey it.’ Corpus aptavit Sibi, ut Spiritum aptaret tibi; Christ fitted our body to Him, that He might fit His Spirit to us. For so is the Spirit best fitted, made remeable, and best exhibited to us who consist of both.
What is very interesting here about Andrewes’s language is how he is communicating a real presence in the receiving of the flesh and blood of Christ in the Eucharist that is united to the Spirit. The Spirit is the knot of the hypostatic union as he implies earlier on in this sermon. In relationship to the psychosomatic nature of humanity, Andrewes expresses the same unity of the body and blood communicated in the Eucharist as it is united to the Spirit. So, in the Eucharist of the body and blood of Christ there is a true sense of objective life communicated to us through the vehicles of the Spirit. Those vehicles are the bread and the wine. This would mean that the Eucharist is not a lifeless sacrament. It conveys the life it represents since it carries the Spirit of Christ to the communicants. This means that there is an objective operative aspect of the Eucharist in the theology of Andrewes’s sacramental celebrations. This implies, very importantly, a belief in real presence in the sacramental elements. Since there is a real presence of body and blood then there naturally for Andrewes is a presence of the Spirit since they both are united to the body of Christ. He is not a spiritless being. Therefore Andrewes goes on to say,
This is sure: where His flesh and blood are, they are not examines, “spiritless” they are not or without life, His Spirit is with them. Therefore was it ordained in those very elements, which have both of them a comfortable operation in the heart of man. One of them, bread, serving to strengthen it, or make it strong; and comfort cometh of confortare, which is ‘to make strong.’ And the other, wine, to make it cheerful [Psalm 104.15] or “glad;” and is therefore willed to me ministered to them that mourn, and are oppressed with grief. And all this is to shew that the same effect is wrought in the inward man by the holy mysteries, that is in the outward by the elements; [Hebrews 13.9] that there the heart is “established by grace,” and our soul endued with strength, and our conscience made light and cheerful, that it faint not, but evermore rejoice in His holy comfort.
For Andrewes the flesh and blood IS present in the elements as well as the Spirit and this was ordained by God to be present via bread and wine. It is the life of the Spirit united to those elements that works the operation of comfort in the heart of man. Naturally this will cause the debate of sacramental efficacy between Protestants and the Roman Church to come to mind. This debate of the sacraments working ex opere operato has simply been a lot of mischaracterizations and over-simplifications of what sacramental grace is able to convey through the ordained means. Of course sacraments work this way but not always the same way in every circumstance. The problem that this debate has caused is a narrowing of the sacramental efficacy in Protestantism where the sacraments’ efficacy has become almost completely dependent upon the faith or the subjective evaluation of the individual receiving them rather than a work of God that is outside of the individual yet subjectively transforms the individual as Andrewes has mentioned in the above quotation. The reality of sacramental efficacy is what enables the vehicles of grace to be used as the means of communicating the “comfortable operation in the heart of man.” It produces strength by making strong and cheefulness by making the heart glad. Andrewes says that this same effect that is given to bread and wine for the body of man is also in effect what is wrought in him by the ‘means of these holy mysteries,’ that is objectively communicated by the outward elements; and it is there, in these holy mysteries that the heart is ‘established by grace,’ our ‘souls endued with strength,’ and ‘our conscience made light and cheerful.’ The essence of this sacramental efficacy is sealed and made known by the Spirit being fitted to Christ and His body, by our union with Christ in the Spirit, and the Spirit’s uniting the body and the blood to bread and wine making for the sacramental grace and the communicating of comfort. The question that seems to be underlying the issue of sacramental efficacy in general and Eucharistic efficacy in particular is not so much that the sacraments are efficacious, as many within both Roman and Reformed traditions would allow; but how in effect is this efficacy exerted?

P.S. As I completed this entry, Gary Macy's book Treasures From the Storeroom: Medieval Religion and the Eucharist arrived.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Training Ourselves for Humility

Humility is the opposite of pride and it is the visible sign of charity working in our hearts. Pride attacks us in many ways and seers the conscience from thinking and responding to life's tough situations with the grace of God. Envy is a result of pride and I find the words of St. John Chrysostom to be powerful. He writes,
Would you like to see God glorified by you? Then rejoice in your brother's progress and you will immediately give glory to God. Because his servant could conquer envy by rejoicing in the merits of others, God will be priased.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Blog Layout and Look

I noticed that if I look at my blog on Internet Explorer, the pictures are quite large and force my links on the right to the bottom of the blog. I am now using Mozilla Firefox for my Internet server and it shrinks the pictures down to fit properly and keeps my blog properly set up. What are you all seeing? How about a switch to Firefox?

de La Taille SJ on Eucharistic Sacrifice

I know I have recently said a lot here about Eucharistic Sacrifice and I hope that these frequent posts on it are not boring the readers and sending them away. I am simply working on that chapter in my dissertation now so a lot of my thoughts are focused in that area presently. So please forgive me until I finish this chapter!! I have just finished the first volume of de La Taille's SJ volume on the Mystery of Faith. Now it is important to read Eucharistic Sacrifice in the Roman Catholic Tradition prior to Vatican II as well as post Vatican II to see if the language and theology might not be a bit more nuanced in how the teaching in explained in the Second Council. La Taille's work is published in 1941 so it is obviously pre-Vat. II. He was Professor of Theology in the Pontifical Gregorian University of Rome. This volume focused on the sacrifice of our Lord and the next volume which I will begin after posting this entry will focus on the Mass itself. I leave a quotation from the conclusion of volume one for your thoughts on the teachings of the Sacrifice of Christ in the Eucharist according to the Church of Rome. La Taille SJ writes,
Hence we see how we can offer Christ in the sacrament as our Victim. For in the first place, had not Christ made the active offering of Himself in the past, we could not offer Him now, because our sacerdotal power is simply a participation in, and an instrument of, the priesthood of Christ. Secondly, did not the Body of Christ immolated in the past, and the Blood shed in the past, remain sacred to God, we could not have in the sacrament a true sacrifice, for we would not have a true victim. For we cannot make Christ a victim by the sacrament really, but only symbolically;16 in spite of the fact that He becomes truly present by the consecration. Thus in that event we should offer be in the reality of the Flesh and Blood, present under the species, the likeness of a victim but not a victim. We know however that in the Mass we do offer a victim, and that our sacrificial action is sacramental or representative, in such manner how ever as to be real. How is this if not because in the sacramental immolation we really offer Christ in a sensible manner (i.e. under the species) as one who (in virtue of His own offering of Himself to the immolation of the Passion) abides as sacred to God for all eternity? This is lot to make Christ a victim, but to make of the Victim of our High priest the Victim of His people whom Christ has commissioned to be priests to God and the Father; He who is Victim does not need to be made Victim; but He who is His own Victim is made ours, as will be explained in its proper place." 254 255

note 16: The reason of course is, as we have repeatedly said, that Christ is not offered to a real immolation (as Christ offered Himself to a real immolation in the Supper) by our symbolical immolation. Therefore take away from Christ His enduring condition of immolation, and you will find in our consecration no element in virtue of which Christ could be called a true victim. 255
What La Taille is referencing here is the eternal priesthood of Christ that goes on in the present in Heaven. His view describes that priesthood as one that is fulfilled by the glorified presence of the Incarnate Christ in Heaven where no prayers or petitions from Him are necessary. Simply His presence with His scars and the acceptance of the One sacrificial offering on the Cross seen by His glorification and sitting at the Right Hand of God is the ongoing Intercessory role of Christ. Within that context of Christ's intercessory role as eternal priest does he define the Eucharistic offering of the Church. This is exactly the theology and teaching of the Early Church and specifically that of St. John Chrysostom. Therefore, could Andrewes tell St. Cardinal Bellarmine SJ that there really was no difference between the Church in England during Andrewes' day and that of Rome's teaching on Eucharistic Sacrifice save the doctrine of Transubstantiation. Presence will be my next chapter to write on Andrewes' theology of the Eucharist so you will have to wait until the end of the Summer for those thoughts to be put forth! What do my readers think? You don't have to agree to put your opinion here; all are welcome!

Andrewes: Resurrection and Eucharist

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Preached before the King’s Majesty at Whitehall on the sixth of April, A.D. MDCVI., being Easter Day.

Text: Rom. 6:9-11

The sermon resonates with two major themes: 1) the knowledge of Christ’s dying to sin and being raised to life in God and 2) our account for that knowledge in our similarity of dying ourselves to sin and being raised to live unto God in Christ. The living unto God was all of His grace breathed into us and bringing us to life through repentance from sin and dead works and living unto God in Christ. Andrewes quoting St. Augustine says sine Me nihil potestis facere; ‘without Me you are able to do nothing.’ For Andrewes then it is this same Spirit and life that are joined to the elements that make the Blessed Sacrament. The Eucharist for Andrewes is the means of opening our eyes
to the best and surest sense we know, and therefore most to be accounted of. There we taste and there we see; taste and see how gracious the Lord is. There we are made to drink of the Spirit, there our hearts are strengthened and stablished with grace. There is the Blood which shall purge our consciences from dead works, whereby we may die to sin. There the Bread of God, which shall endue our souls with much strength; yeah, multiply strength in them, to live unto God; yea, to live to Him continually; for he that eateth His flesh and drinketh His blood, dwelleth in Christ, and Christ in him; not inneth, or sojourneth for a time, but dwelleth continually. And, never can we more truly, or properly say, in Christo Jesu Domino nostro, as when we come new from that holy action, for then he is in us, and we in Him, indeed. And so we to make full account of this service, as a special means to further us to make up our Easter-day’s account, and to set off a good part of our charge…Thus using His own ordinance of Prayer, of the Word, and Sacrament, for our better enabling to discharge this day’s duty, we shall I trust yield up a good account, and celebrate a good feast of His resurrection.
It is in our tasting the goodness of the Lord in the bread and in the wine, the body and the blood of Christ whereby in our union with him through this sacrament of grace we are to give an account of what we have seen and tasted in the grace of God in Christ in this holy action. The Eucharist for Andrewes theologically and ethically calls the Church to a holy life by the holy action of receiving the strengthening grace through the Spirit. It is a means of our drinking of the Spirit. There are numerous benefits given to us through the sacramental vehicle of grace. For Andrewes it is without doubt a real receiving of this grace that is to be displayed in the real accounting of it that we are to demonstrate.

Andrewes echoes the teaching of the Eucharist as a propitiatory sacrifice when he says, “There is the Blood which shall purge our consciences from dead works, whereby we may die to sin.” The Eucharist as a propitiatory sacrifice was denied by many Edwardian Reformers and those on the continent as well. The Eucharist reapplies that work of Calvary in the receiving of the Blood anew. This is not something magical for Andrewes where repentance from dead works and sin is not required. The whole point of his sermon on Romans 6:9-11 was the two-fold emphasis stated above where he made sure to emphasise that mere knowledge or even ascent to knowledge was enough but what was required was a knowing and accounting for what we know by dying ourselves to sin and living unto God in Christ Jesus. Andrewes could not be convicted of the charge that was swirling around this debate that the Eucharist had become in Rome’s dogma a propitiatory sacrifice that was independent of the sacrifice of Calvary. Matter of fact, that charge against Rome does not stand up against the evidence of Rome's own explanations of the connection between the Cross and Offering in the first Eucharist. The quotation shows that the opposite is true for Andrewes as well. It is what John Johnson went on to say in his work Unbloody Sacrifice. Francis Clark uses Johnson, who was a late 17th century Anglican divine, as an example of one who insists that the Eucharistic propitiation is by way of application of the one sacrifice at Calvary.
'Tis agreed on all hands that the merit and satisfaction whereby our sins are forgiven flow purely from the Grand Sacrifice; but I am now speaking of 'the actual application of these merits and this satisfaction, which was the end for which all Sacrifices under the Law, and the Eucharistical Sacrifice under the Gospel, were appointed by God.’
It is in this aspect that Andrewes seems to understand the Eucharist as a propitiatory sacrifice. In the above quote Andrewes is quite intent on keeping this aspect of the Eucharist’s work in our lives in its proper union with Christ and not something altogether separate. He speaks of this union as something that is in continuum for the Christian that is realized in the eating and drinking of the body and blood of Christ. He references John 6:33, 56 as support for his position. The Eucharist seals our union with Christ for Andrewes. He says, ‘that there is never a time where we can say with more affirmation and confidence than at the action of Holy Communion that we are in Christ Jesus our Lord.’ For Andrewes this creates a real vital union between Christ and his people. It is in the reapplication of the one sacrifice of Christ where our consciences are cleansed and we are enabled to carry out the charge given to us to continue living unto God in Christ and dying unto our sin in his death as well. Both dying and living is what it means for Andrewes to account for our knowledge of God’s work for us in Christ whereby through the right use of the means of His grace in prayer, word and sacrament we are given the means to carry out the charge given to us. That charge is to live as 'bread broken on behalf of the world.'

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Some Eucharistic Thoughts

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At its twenty-second session, the Council of Trent came up with the following definition of the Sacrifice of the Eucharist after a long debate. Now, let's think about what is actually said here and what isn't.Here is the text:
CHAPTER I.On the institution of the most holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Forasmuch as, under the former Testament, according to the testimony of the Apostle Paul, there was no perfection, because of the weakness of the Levitical priesthood; there was need, God, the Father of mercies, so ordaining, that another priest should rise, according to the order of Melchisedech, our Lord Jesus Christ, who might consummate, and lead to what is perfect, as many as were to be sanctified. He, therefore, our God and Lord, though He was about to offer Himself once on the altar of the cross unto God the Father, by means of his death, there to operate an eternal redemption; nevertheless, because that His priesthood was not to be extinguished by His death, in the last supper, on the night in which He was betrayed,--that He might leave, to His own beloved Spouse the Church, a visible sacrifice, such as the nature of man requires, whereby that bloody sacrifice, once to be accomplished on the cross, might be represented, and the memory thereof remain even unto the end of the world, and its salutary virtue be applied to the remission of those sins which we daily commit,--declaring Himself constituted a priest for ever, according to the order of Melchisedech, He offered up to God the Father His own body and blood under the species of bread and wine; and, under the symbols of those same things, He delivered (His own body and blood) to be received by His apostles, whom He then constituted priests of the New Testament; and by those words, Do this in commemoration of me, He commanded them and their successors in the priesthood, to offer (them); even as the Catholic Church has always understood and taught. For, having celebrated the ancient Passover, which the multitude of the children of Israel immolated in memory of their going out of [Page 154] Egypt, He instituted the new Passover, (to wit) Himself to be immolated, under visible signs, by the Church through (the ministry of) priests, in memory of His own passage from this world unto the Father, when by the effusion of His own blood He redeemed us, and delivered us from the power of darkness, and translated us into his kingdom. And this is indeed that clean oblation, which cannot be defiled by any unworthiness, or malice of those that offer (it); which the Lord foretold by Malachias was to be offered in every place, clean to his name, which was to be great amongst the Gentiles; and which the apostle Paul, writing to the Corinthians, has not obscurely indicated, when he says, that they who are defiled by the participation of the table of devils, cannot be partakers of the table of the Lord; by the table, meaning in both places the altar. This, in fine, is that oblation which was prefigured by various types of sacrifices, during the period of nature, and of the law; in as much as it comprises all the good things signified by those sacrifices, as being the consummation and perfection of them all.
I believe if one can get past their anti-Catholic emotions and fears, the obvious can be understood here. There is not a new sacrifice. It is one and the same sacrifice that is offered once and for all. What a priest does at the Eucharist is to offer the same offering that Christ offered to the Father for the forgiveness of sins. With the theological connection of Melchisedech and the eternal priesthood of Christ, the nature of the offering is not an improvement or an addition to the one offering of Christ. It's that very offering brought into the present and applied to us for the forgiveness of sins daily committed. Is there scriptural justification for this? What did Jesus mean when He said 'do this as my memorial for the forgiveness of sins?' One can see the theology of sacramental efficacy in the providing in the present that offering of the past. That is what is going on. As the New Pascha, the Eucharist brings into the present the offering of Christ and we receive the forgiveness of sins (Is. 6 'the burning coal') and receive the eschatalogical hope of the fulness of the Kingdom being brought near to us in the present as we journey into the future. The offering of Christ in the Eucharist does not take away from the offering of Christ on the Altar of the Cross because it's the SAME offering though of course it's unbloody because Christ Jesus no longer is able to suffer death. This is the fulfillment of the promise from Mal. that the Gentiles would offer the sacrifice and incense up to God. It is in this manner that all of the early Church Fathers spoke of the Eucharistic sacrifice and had calmer heads prevailed in the C16, we might not have all the reductio ad absurdum explanations from the Puritan sects in England in the late C16 and early C17.

What has happened is that the silly conclusions that some writers arrived at have become the supposedly de facto position of the Church's teaching on this issue and many of those arguments simply fail to see what the Church has believed here. This is not to deny that there were terrible abuses within the Medieval Church that have been corrected and admitted as abuses. There's simply no denying it. But the abuse of something like Eucharistic Sacrifice should not automatically make void what is right within the theology of Eucharistic Sacrifice. What is threatened or taken away from the Gospel or the One Sufficient and Satisfactory offering of Christ at Calvary by believing and teaching the Church's Eucharistic/Sacramental offering of Christ in that rite?

A New Catholic Blog

Here is a new blog pointed out by Al Kimel that looks like it will bring some interesting discussion on the Catholic Catechism and other theological issues.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Orthodox and Anglicans/The Bible and the Church

1. What is the relation between the Bible and the Church?

In order to simplify this question, let me propose the respective Orthodox Catholic view.

[23] Jesus Christ taught his Apostles, during his lifetime and from his Resurrection to his Ascension, all the Catholic truth, founded the Church, to be guided infallibly by the indwelling Holy Ghost, "upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner-stone." THIS CHURCH IS "THE PILLAR AND GROUND OF THE TRUTH,"--and I add most emphatically--the only pillar and ground of the truth. The Apostles deposited this truth in their several Churches, consecrated bishops to be their successors and preservers of the truth deposited. Of this "depositum fidei" part was occasionally written, part orally transmitted (2 Thess. ii. 15), but both the written and unwritten word of God formed but one and the same faith, the faith of the Church. This One Word of God, as contained in Bible and Tradition, cannot be torn asunder without making the Bible a storehouse of deadly weapons, a refuge of heresy, a hand-book for the use of Satan (St. Matt. iv. 6). The Bible is neither the complete nor sufficient source of Christian truth, but explicitly points to the contrary. To the apostles Jesus Christ "shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God" (Acts i. 3). What did he speak during those forty days? "About the things pertaining to the kingdom of God," i. e. about the Constitution of the Church and Church-doctrine. And quite natural it was, for the foundation of the Church was close at hand. Of this teaching we find fragments scattered about in the Epistles, [23/24] as occasion required it, but nowhere is written down the complete account of the preparatory instruction which Christ gave his Apostles in the days between his Resurrection and Ascension. Still the Church rests on this instruction, completing what we do not find in the Bible. For instance, nobody can satisfactorily settle the important question of the Baptism of infants from the Bible. Without the teaching of my Church I certainly should be in this point a Baptist. Again, according to Catholic Church teaching, the seven Sacraments are instituted by Christ himself; but, in the Bible, you can only find two sacraments instituted by Christ. Therefore you make the heterodox distinction of two essentially different classes of sacraments, viz. the two real sacraments, Baptism and the Lord's Supper, and five sacramental rites of minor importance. Consistently you can attach to the latter class only an "operatio ex opere operantis," and if you still assert an "operatio ex opere operato," it is but one of the many inconsistencies which overcloud Anglo-Catholicism vibrating between Church and Bible. We have the Church including the Bible, both forming but one Unity. You have the Bible and the Church, forming a Duality disparaging either of the two. Now as you hold the genuine Protestant belief of the self-subsistence of the Bible, not considering the Bible as a fruit of the Church in the full Catholic meaning of the word, exclusively belonging to the Church, to be interpreted only by the Church--you cannot find the proper position of the Church, but place her under the control of the Bible. I [24/25] say, you do not fully consider the Bible as a fruit of the Church, which fruit, as soon as ripe, i.e. canonically completed and universally recognized, was detached from the tree, became self-supporting and sovereign, though not directly hostile to the tree which retains the office of keeping the Bible's Pedigree, after having been superseded by the Bible in all its other primitive functions. Before the Bible was ready, the Church was acknowledged to have been an absolute monarch; since the Bible is ready, the Church became (in the opinion of Protestants) a constitutional prince, lodged in a splendid palace, but bereaved of all rights, even of the right of Veto. The real power lies with the Magna Charta of the Bible, which every one twists as it pleases him. It is true, the Church is a most convenient armoury for the Anglo-Catholics to find weapons for defending themselves and combating Protestantism, but they forget that the primitive position of the Church is materially altered, since the Bible ceased to be the Church's helpmate, both (Church and Bible) being but one and the same organ of the Holy Ghost. Since the Reformation the Bible has to watch over the Church, and has to dictate the sound belief to the Church. Now I call this Protestant table-turning. Such a Church beside the Bible (instead of the Bible within the Church) may be useful, handy, comfortable, but she is not necessary, merely "un article de luxe." Wherefore the greater bulk of consistent Protestants exploded the antiquated idea of the Church as being both cumbrous and injurious to pure Bible-belief.

J.J. Overbeck - Catholic Orthodoxy and Anglo-Catholicism.

St. Gregory of Nyssa on the Soul and Resurrection

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For the perfection of bodies that rise from that sowing of death is, as the Apostle tells us, to consist in incorruption and glory and honour and power; but any diminution in such excellences does not denote a corresponding bodily mutilation of him who has risen again, but a withdrawal and estrangement from each one of those things which are conceived of as belonging to the good. Seeing, then, that one or the other of these two diametrically opposed ideas, I mean good and evil, must any way attach to us, it is clear that to say a man is not included in the good is a necessary demonstration that he is included in the evil. But then, in connection with evil, we find no honour, no glory, no incorruption, no power; and so we are forced to dismiss all doubt that a man who has nothing to do with these last-mentioned things must be connected with their opposites, viz. with weakness, with dishonour, with corruption, with everything of that nature, such as we spoke of in the previous parts of the discussion, when we said how many were the passions, sprung from evil, which are so hard for the soul to get rid of, when they have infused themselves into the very substance of its entire nature and become one with it. When such, then, have been purged from it and utterly removed by the healing processes worked out by the Fire, then every one of the things which make up our conception of the good will come to take their place; incorruption, that is, and life, and honour, and grace, and glory, and everything else that we conjecture is to be seen in God, and in His Image, man as he was made.

Saint Gregory of Nyssa

NOTE: There is one thing to notice about pictures of the Resurrection and their differences between the Eastern and the Western Traditions. Often the pictures of the Resurrection in the West are portraits of what looks to be an under-fed man who is pale and looks lost and wondering where his clothes are or what he should be doing next. But in the Eastern Tradition, we often find icons of the Resurrection that denote victory and power and Christ winning and triumphing over the enemy. I guess that type of language is not too politically correct in the West these days but the truth of the Gospel is that Christ has conquered death and sin and gained victory and he has crushed the gates of Hell under His feet. I trust that the icon above shows that message.

Apologies for Blog

I do not know what has happened to my pictures posted for my blog entries, but today all of them were gone with the blurb you see below. I have no idea what has happened. I know who is not going to be my web hosting anymore! There is no sense in trying to recover them. But, I apologise for the way the blog looks for now. I'll eventually get it cleaned back up. Thanks for your patience.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Christ Is Risen! Alleluya!

THE Day of Resurrection!
Earth, tell it out abroad;
The Passover of gladness,
The Passover of God!
From death to life eternal.
From earth unto the sky,
Our Christ hath brought us over
With hymns of victory.

Our hearts be pure from evil,
That we may see aright
The Lord in rays eternal
Of resurrection-light;
And, listening to his accents,
May hear so calm and plain
His own 'All hail,' and hearing,
May raise the victor strain.

Now let the heavens be joyful,
And earth her song begin,
The round world keep high triumph,
And all that is therein;
Let all thins seen and unseen
Their notes of gladness blend,
For Christ the Lord hath risen,
Our joy that hath no end.

St. John of Dacascus c750
Tr. J.M. Neale 1816-66


Friday, April 14, 2006

Behold, The Wood of the Cross!

There was much proclaimed by the prophets about the mystery of the Passover: that mystery is Christ, and to him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

For the sake of suffering humanity he came down from heaven to earth, clothed himself in that humanity in the Virgin's womb, and was born a man. Having then a body capable of suffering, he took the pain of fallen man upon himself; he triumphed over the diseases of soul and body that were its cause, and by his Spirit, which was incapable of dying, he dealt man's destroyer, death, a fatal blow.

He was led forth like a lamb; he was slaughtered like a sheep. He ransomed us from our servitude to the world, as he had ransomed Israel from the hand of Egypt; he freed us from our slavery to the devil, as he had freed Israel from the hand of Pharaoh. He sealed our souls with his own Spirit, and the members of our body with his own blood.

He is the One who covered death with shame and cast the devil into mourning, as Moses cast Pharaoh into mourning . He is the One that smote sin and robbed iniquity of offspring, as Moses robbed the Egyptians of their offspring. He is the One who brought us out of slavery into freedom, out of darkness into light, out of death into life, out of tyranny into an eternal kingdom; who made us a new priesthood, a people chosen to be his own for ever. He is the Passover that is our salvation.

It is he who endured every kind of suffering in all those who foreshadowed him. In Abel he was slain, in Isaac bound, in Jacob exiled, in Joseph sold, in Moses exposed to die. He was sacrificed in the Passover lamb, persecuted in David, dishonored in the prophets.

It is he who was made man of the Virgin, he who was hung on the tree; it is he who was buried in the earth, raised from the dead, and taken up to the heights of heaven. He is the mute lamb, the slain lamb born of Mary, the fair ewe. He was seized from the flock, dragged off to be slaughtered, sacrificed in the evening, and buried at night. On the tree no bone of his was broken; in the earth his body knew no decay. He is the One who rose from the dead, and who raised man from the depths of the tomb.

Melito of Sardis, Second Century

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Eucharistic Meditation

The below meditation was written to be on put on the Lent and Beyond site but I do not see that it has been posted so I'll put it here. This was to be the meditation for Maundy Thursday.

In his book For the Life of the World, Alexander Schmemann writes of the Eucharist as the Sacrament and Symbol of the Kingdom of God breaking in on earth. In summary, he defines the essence of what that Holy night fulfilled in the ushering in of God’s Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven. He writes, …
that the proper function of the ‘leitourgia’ has always been to bring together, within one symbol, the three levels of the Christian faith and life: the Church, the world, and the Kingdom; that the Church herself is thus the sacrament in which the broken, yet still ‘symbolical,’ life of ‘this world’ is brought, in Christ and by Christ, into the dimension of the Kingdom of God, becoming itself the sacrament of the ‘world to come,’ or that which God has from all eternity prepared for those who love Him, and where all that which is human can be transfigured by grace so that all things may be consummated in God; that finally it is here and only here—in the ‘mysterion’ of God’s presence and action—that the Church always becomes that which she is: the Body of Christ and the Temple of the Holy Spirit, the unique Symbol ‘bringing together’—by bringing to God the world for the life of which He gave His Son. (p.151)
It is important for us to realize that the Eucharist not only gives thanks for a past event, but it also humbly entreats God for the present and the future. It is a meal that draws together all the Saints, past and present. The Eucharist unites time and eternity. On Easter Sunday of 1612, Lancelot Andrewes preached on 1 Cor. 5:7 ff. and worked out a full statement of his Eucharistic theology. Christ is the sacrifice, the Passover feast. “If Christ be a propitiatory sacrifice, a peace-offering, I see not how we can avoid, but the flesh of our peace-offering must be eaten in this feast by us, or else we evacuate the offering utterly, and lose the fruit of it.” The Supper is rightly a memorial action and a receiving of grace. On the night of the Last Supper, Jesus offered Himself over to death for the forgiveness of sins. He did this with bread and wine as a priest after the order of Melchizedek. The Eucharist was given as the memorial offering of Christ for the life of the world. Andrewes went on to say in his sermon, “That sacrifice was but once actually performed, at His death: but ever before represented, in figure, from the beginning; and ever since repeated, in memory, to the world’s end.” He concludes his sermon by joining together time and eternity and says,
And we are, in this action, not only carried up to Christ (sursum corda; i.e., lift up your hearts) but, we are also carried back, to Christ; as he was at the very instant, and in the very act of His offering. So, and no otherwise, doth this text teach. So, and no otherwise, do we represent Him. By the very incomprehensible power of His eternal Spirit, not He alone, but he, as at the very act of His offering, is made present to us, and we incorporate into His death, and invested in the benefit of it…
This is the beauty of the mystery that we have in the Holy Eucharist. As we are united together in our prayers and actions in the liturgy of the Church, time and eternity, Christ and the Eucharist meet together and we receive a foretaste of eternity with Christ. As he is one body, it is crucial for us to demonstrate that we are one body by participation in the Holy Sacrament. The bread shown represents this. Seeing that there are many grains mixed together in the one loaf, we who are many are mixed, joined and bound together in such a way that one theologian said, “…by such great agreement of minds that no sort of disagreement or division may intrude.” (1 Cor. 10:16, 17) Therefore, we cannot love Christ without loving him in the brethren. We are called to take care of the whole Body as we take care of our own. We cannot let a brother be affected by evil or hardship without having compassion for him. So St. Augustine called this Sacrament “the bond of love.”

The Eucharist is our food, the essence and source of life in the Church—and it is the sacrificial life offered in this Sacrament that we are called to live by. Alexander Schmemann said, “Each Communion is the end of our movement towards God but also the starting point of our renewed life, the beginning of a new journey through time in which we need Christ’s presence to guide and sanctify our way.” Within the mystery of the Eucharist is revealed the mystery of the Church, “the Body of Christ in which we eternally become what we are called to be.” The Holy Eucharist is the heart of the Church’s life. The Liturgy of the Church is not primarily a symbol of God’s love but the act of the people renewing his love. The Supper was also meant to show forth the mutual love of Christ to us and our love for one another. It is medicine for the sick soul. It inspires us to purity and holiness of life. It is the means to love, peace and concord. The Supper is the place where the Lord communicates his body and blood to us and is made completely one with us and we are united to him. The Holy Supper is the Sacrament of salvation, a Sacrament of unity and love, sanctification, the Church’s sacrifice and ultimately a participation in our future glorification. It is in all of these mysterious expressions that characterize us as Christians and our whole Christian life must be based upon the grace that we receive in the Holy Supper and its commemoration of Christ.

This is my Body, which is given for you; this is my blood of the covenant that has been shed for you. Behold, the Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world!

Eucahristic Prayer of St. Basil the Great

O Lord my God, I thank you for not rejecting me, a sinner, and for deeming me worthy to be a partaker of Your Holy Mysteries.

I thank you for having allowed me, unworthy though I am, to be a partaker of Your most pure and heavenly Gifts.

O Lord and Lover of Mankind, You died and rose again for our sake, and gave us these awesome and life-giving Mysteries for the good of our body and the sanctification of our soul.

Grant that they serve to heal my body and soul, and that they set to flight every foe.

Enlighten the eyes of my heart, give peace to the powers of my mind, inspire me with faith, with a sincere love and deep wisdom, and with obedience to Your commandments.

May these Mysteries increase Your divine grace in me and make me an inhabitant of your kingdom.

Being preserved in Your holiness by them, I will remember Your love at all times. From now on, I will not live for myself, but for You, my Lord and Benefactor.

Thus, having spent my earthly life in the hope of life without end, I will one day reach eternal rest where the sound of rejoicing never ceases, and where the delight of those who look upon the beauty of Your Face has no bounds.

For You, Christ our God, are truly the object of our desire and the inexpressible joy of those who love You, and all creatures glorify You, now and ever and forever. Amen.

Out of the Mouths of Babes!

This morning my 5-year old son Caleb and I went into Durham to get our haircut and to pick up a few things before the big Easter events. Caleb has the strongest Northern England accent out of all my children, which makes what he said to me even more funny. I asked Caleb what he wanted to be when he grows up and he said, without hesitation, "a priest." In his North-England accent. Of course, I smiled and asked him why. I said, "so you can pray with people?" He said, "no." "So you can preach?" He said, "no." I said, "so you can give the Sacrament?" He said, "no, because I would get to drink all of the wine at the end of communion." He said this with a serious look on his face as if I should have known that. Though I'm laughing, I'm still wondering how to take it!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Holy Wednesday with Leo the Great


I. The difference between the penitence and blasphemy of the two robbers is a type of the human race. That which we owe to your expectations, dearly-beloved, must be paid through the LORD'S bountiful answer to your prayers that He Who has made you eager in the demanding would make us fit for the performing. In speaking but lately of the LORD'S Passion we reached the point in the Gospel story, where Pilate is said to have yielded to the Jews' wicked shouts that Jesus should be crucified. And so when all things had been accomplished, which the Godhead veiled in frail flesh permitted, Jesus Christ the Son of GOD was fixed to the cross which He had also been carrying, two robbers being similarly crucified, one on His right hand, and the other on the left: so that even in the incidents of the cross might be displayed that difference which in His judgment must be made in the case of all men; for the believing robber's faith was a type of those who are to be saved, and the blasphemer's wickedness prefigured those who are to be damned. Christ's Passion, therefore, contains the mystery of our salvation, and of the instrument which the iniquity of the Jews prepared for His punishment, the Redeemer's power has made for us the stepping-stone to glory: and that Passion the LORD Jesus so underwent for the salvation of all men that, while hanging there nailed to the wood, He entreated the Father's mercy for His murderers, and said, "Father, forgive them, for they know' not what they do." II. The chief priests showed utter ignorance of Scripture in their taunts. But the chief priests, for whom the Saviour sought forgiveness, rendered the torture of the cross yet worse by the barbs of railery; and at Him, on Whom they could vent no more fury with their hands, they hurled the weapons of their tongues, saying, "He saved others; Himself he cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we believe Him." From what spring of error, from what pool of hatred, O ye Jews, do ye drink such poisonous blasphemies? What master informed you, what teaching convinced you that you ought to believe Him to be King of Israel and Son Of GOD, who should either not allow Himself to be crucified, or should shake Himself free from the binding nails. The mysteries of the Law, the sacred observances of the Passover, the mouths of the Prophets never told you this: whereas you did find truly and oft-times written that which applies to your abominable wicked-doing and to the LORD'S voluntary suffering. For He Himself says by Isaiah, "I gave My back to the scourges, My cheeks to the palms of the hand, I turned not My face from the shame of spitting." He Himself says by David, "They gave Me gall for My food, and in My thirst they supplied Me with vinegar." and again, "Many dogs came about Me, the council of evil-doers beset Me. They pierced My hands and My feet, they counted all My bones. But they themselves watched and gazed on Me, they parted My raiment among them, and for My robe they cast lots." And lest the course of your own evil doings should seem to have been foretold, and no power in the Crucified predicted, ye read not, indeed, that the LORD descended from the cross, but ye did read, "The LORD reigned on the tree." [II. The triumph of the Cross is immediate and effective. The Cross of Christ, therefore, symbolizes the true altar of prophecy, on which the oblation of man's nature should be celebrated by 168 means of a salvation-bringing Victim. There the blood of the spotless Lamb blotted out the consequences of the ancient trespass: there the whole tyranny of the devil's hatred was crushed, and humiliation triumphed gloriously over the lifting up of pride: for so swift was the effect of Faith that of the robbers crucified with Christ, the one who believed in Christ as the Son of GOD entered paradise justified. Who can unfold the mystery of so great a boon? who can state the power of so wondrous a change? In a moment of thee the guilt of long evil-doing is done away; clinging to the cross, amid the cruel tortures of his struggling soul, he passes over to Christ; and to him, on whom his own wickedness had brought punishment, Christ's grace now gives a crown. IV. When the last act in the tragedy was over how must the Jews have felt? And then, having now tasted the vinegar, the produce of that vineyard which had degenerated in spite of its Divine Planter, and had turned to the sourness of a foreign vine, the LORD says, "it is finished;" that is, the Scriptures are fulfilled: there is no more for Me to abide from the fury of the raging people: I have endured all that I foretold I should suffer. The mysteries of weakness are completed, let the proofs of power be produced. And so He bowed the head and yielded up His Spirit and gave that Body, Which should be raised again on the third day, the rest of peaceful slumber. And when the Author of Life was undergoing this mysterious phase, and at so great a condescension of GOD'S Majesty, the foundations of the whole world were shaken, when all creation condemned their wicked crime by its upheaval, and the very elements of the world delivered a plain verdict against the criminals, what thoughts, what heart-searchings had ye, O Jews, when the judgment of the universe went against you, and your wickedness could not be recalled, the crime having been done? what confusion covered you? what torment seized your hearts? V. Chastity, and charity are the two things most needful in preparing for Easter Com- munion. Seeing therefore, dearly-beloved, that GOD'S Mercy is so great, that He has deigned to justify. by faith many even from among such a nation, and had adopted into the company of the patriarchs and into the number of the chosen people us who were once perishing in the deep darkness of our old ignorance, let us mount to the summit of our hopes not sluggishly nor in sloth; but prudently and faithfully reflecting from what captivity and from how miserable a bondage, with what ransom we were purchased, by how strong an arm led out, let us glorify GOD in our body: that we may show Him dwelling in us, even by the uprightness of our manner of life: And because no virtues are worthier or more excellent than merciful loving-kindness and unblemished chastity, let us more especially equip ourselves with these weapons, so that, raised from the earth, as it were on the two wings of active charity and shining purity, we may win a place in heaven. And whosoever, aided by GOD'S grace, is filled with this desire and glories not in himself, but in the LORD, over his progress, pays due honour to the Easter mystery. His threshold the angel of destruction does not cross, for it is marked with the Lamb's blood and the sign of the cross. He fears not the plagues of Egypt, and leaves his foes overwhelmed by the same waters by which he himself was saved. And so, dearly-beloved, with minds and bodies purified let us embrace the wondrous mystery of our salvation, and, cleansed from all "the leaven of our old wickedness, let us keep" the LORD'S Passover with due observance: so that, the Holy Spirit guiding us, we may be "separated" by no temptations "from the love of Christ," Who bringing peace by His blood to all things, has returned to the loftiness of the Father's glory, and yet not forsaken the lowliness of those who serve Him to Whom is the honour and the glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Leo The Great Sermon 55

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Palm Sunday

Dearly beloved, the Solemnity of the Lord’s Passion is come’ that day which we have so desired and which same is so precious to the whole world. Shouts of spiritual triumph are ringing, and suffer not that we should be silent. Even though it be hard to preach often on the same solemnity, and do so meetly and well, a priest is not free to shirk the duty of preaching to the faithful concerning this so great mystery of divine mercy. Nay, that his subject matter is unspeakable should in itself make him eloquent, since where enough can never be said, there must needs ever be somewhat to say. Let human weakness, then, fall down before the glory of God, and acknowledge itself unequal to the duty of expounding the works of his mercy. Let us toil in thought, let us fail in insight, let us falter in speech; it is good for us to feel how inadequate is the little we are able to express concerning the majesty of God.

R. The enemy hath enclosed my ways: like as a lion was he, lying in wait in secret places: he hath filled me with bitterness; he hath made me drunken with wormwood: they have cut off my life in the dungeon, and cast a stone upon me: O Lord, thou hast seen my wrong: judge thou my cause.

V. I was a derision to all my people: and their song all the day long.

From a Sermon by St. Leo the Pope: Breviary II Nocturn Palm Sunday

Collect: Almighty and everlasting God,
who, of thy tender love towards mankind,
has sent thy Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ,
to take upon him our flesh, and to suffer
death upon the Cross, that all mankind
should follow the example of his great humility:
mercifully grant that we may both follow the
example of his patience, and also be made
partakers of his resurrection. Through the same
Jesus Christ thy Son our Lord, Who liveth and
reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
ever one God, world without end. Amen.

Friday, April 07, 2006

Eucharist & Eschatology: Ecclesia de Eucharistia

In his encyclical Ecclesia de Eucharistia, JPII writes the following:
18. The acclamation of the assembly following the consecration appropriately ends by expressing the eschatological thrust which marks the celebration of the Eucharist (cf. 1 Cor 11:26): “until you come in glory”. The Eucharist is a straining towards the goal, a foretaste of the fullness of joy promised by Christ (cf. Jn 15:11); it is in some way the anticipation of heaven, the “pledge of future glory”.30 In the Eucharist, everything speaks of confident waiting “in joyful hope for the coming of our Saviour, Jesus Christ”.31 Those who feed on Christ in the Eucharist need not wait until the hereafter to receive eternal life: they already possess it on earth, as the first-fruits of a future fullness which will embrace man in his totality. For in the Eucharist we also receive the pledge of our bodily resurrection at the end of the world: “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day” (Jn 6:54). This pledge of the future resurrection comes from the fact that the flesh of the Son of Man, given as food, is his body in its glorious state after the resurrection. With the Eucharist we digest, as it were, the “secret” of the resurrection. For this reason Saint Ignatius of Antioch rightly defined the Eucharistic Bread as “a medicine of immortality, an antidote to death”.32

19. The eschatological tension kindled by the Eucharist expresses and reinforces our communion with the Church in heaven. It is not by chance that the Eastern Anaphoras and the Latin Eucharistic Prayers honour Mary, the ever-Virgin Mother of Jesus Christ our Lord and God, the angels, the holy apostles, the glorious martyrs and all the saints. This is an aspect of the Eucharist which merits greater attention: in celebrating the sacrifice of the Lamb, we are united to the heavenly “liturgy” and become part of that great multitude which cries out: “Salvation belongs to our God who sits upon the throne, and to the Lamb!” (Rev 7:10). The Eucharist is truly a glimpse of heaven appearing on earth. It is a glorious ray of the heavenly Jerusalem which pierces the clouds of our history and lights up our journey.

20. A significant consequence of the eschatological tension inherent in the Eucharist is also the fact that it spurs us on our journey through history and plants a seed of living hope in our daily commitment to the work before us. Certainly the Christian vision leads to the expectation of “new heavens” and “a new earth” (Rev 21:1), but this increases, rather than lessens, our sense of responsibility for the world today.33 I wish to reaffirm this forcefully at the beginning of the new millennium, so that Christians will feel more obliged than ever not to neglect their duties as citizens in this world. Theirs is the task of contributing with the light of the Gospel to the building of a more human world, a world fully in harmony with God's plan.

Many problems darken the horizon of our time. We need but think of the urgent need to work for peace, to base relationships between peoples on solid premises of justice and solidarity, and to defend human life from conception to its natural end. And what should we say of the thousand inconsistencies of a “globalized” world where the weakest, the most powerless and the poorest appear to have so little hope! It is in this world that Christian hope must shine forth! For this reason too, the Lord wished to remain with us in the Eucharist, making his presence in meal and sacrifice the promise of a humanity renewed by his love. Significantly, in their account of the Last Supper, the Synoptics recount the institution of the Eucharist, while the Gospel of John relates, as a way of bringing out its profound meaning, the account of the “washing of the feet”, in which Jesus appears as the teacher of communion and of service (cf. Jn 13:1-20). The Apostle Paul, for his part, says that it is “unworthy” of a Christian community to partake of the Lord's Supper amid division and indifference towards the poor (cf. 1 Cor 11:17-22, 27-34).34

Proclaiming the death of the Lord “until he comes” (1 Cor 11:26) entails that all who take part in the Eucharist be committed to changing their lives and making them in a certain way completely “Eucharistic”. It is this fruit of a transfigured existence and a commitment to transforming the world in accordance with the Gospel which splendidly illustrates the eschatological tension inherent in the celebration of the Eucharist and in the Christian life as a whole: “Come, Lord Jesus!” (Rev 22:20).
One cannot help but see the eschatological demands given behind the promises received in the Eucharistic celebration of the Mystery of Faith. There is a lot more work to be done in this area of Eucharistic theology. But, JPII has brought to the surface a very important theme within the theology of the Eucharist that needs further exploration and implimentation within the ministry and calling of the Church as 'bread broken for the life of the world.' I cannot help but be utterly amazed at the close similarities between Lancelot Andrewes and JPII's chapter on the Mystery of Faith within this encyclical. Emphasis on the poor within the Eucharistic offering of the Church was the very heart of the liturgical rite and the moral implications for Andrewes when he applied this rite to the lives of those who eat at this banquet. I hope to do some further work in this area at some point in the future.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Durham Diocese Web Page

Our new web site for the Durham Diocese is up and running! It has taken a while but it is on line now. Give us a look. Should be quite informative.

Durham Diocese.

St. Cyprian on Eucharistic Sacrifice

In a follow up post to the one below on Paul Owen, I have a portion of Cyrprian's writing on this. This is a bit long, but do take the time to read it! It's well worth it.

St. Cyprian.
4. Also in the priest Melchizedek we see prefigured the sacrament of the sacrifice of the Lord, according to what divine Scripture testifies, and says, “And Melchizedek, king of Salem, brought forth bread and wine.”6 Now he was a priest of the most high God, and blessed Abraham. And that Melchizedek bore a type of Christ, the Holy Spirit declares in the Psalms, saying from the person of the Father to the Son: “Before the morning star I begat Thee; Thou art a priest for ever, after the order of Melchizedek; ”7 which order is assuredly this coming from that sacrifice and thence descending; that Melchizedek was a priest of the most high God; that he offered wine and bread; that he blessed Abraham. For who is more a priest of the most high God than our Lord Jesus Christ, who offered a sacrifice to God the Father, and offered that very same thing which Melchizedek had offered, that is, bread and wine, to wit, His body and blood? And with respect to Abraham, that blessing going before belonged to our people. For if Abraham believed in God, and it was accounted unto him for righteousness, assuredly whosoever believes in God and lives in faith is found righteous, and already is blessed in faithful Abraham, and is set forth as justified; as the blessed Apostle Paul proves, when he says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Ye know, then, that they which are of faith, these are the children of Abraham. But the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles through faith, pronounced before to Abraham that all nations should be blessed in him; therefore they who are of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.”8 Whence in the Gospel we find that “children of Abraham are raised from stones, that is, are gathered from the Gentiles.”9 And when the Lord praised Zacchaeus, He answered and said “This day is salvation come to this house, forasmuch as he also is a son of Abraham.”10 In Genesis, therefore, that the benediction, in respect of Abraham by Melchizedek the priest, might be duly celebrated, the figure of Christ’s sacrifice precedes, namely, as ordained in bread and wine; which thing the Lord, completing and fulfilling, offered bread and the cup mixed with wine, and so He who is the fulness of truth fulfilled the truth of the image prefigured.

5. Moreover the Holy Spirit by Solomon shows before the type of the Lord’s sacrifice, making mention of the immolated victim, and of the bread and wine, and, moreover, of the altar and of the apostles, and says, “Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath underlaid her seven pillars; she hath killed her victims; she hath mingled her wine in the chalice; she hath also furnished her table: and she hath sent forth her servants, calling together with a lofty announcement to her cup, saying, Whoso is simple, let him turn to me; and to those that want understanding she hath said, Come, eat of my bread, and drink of the wine which I have mingled for you.”11 He declares the wine mingled, that is, he foretells with prophetic voice the cup of the Lord mingled with water and wine, that it may appear that that was done in our Lord’s passion which had been before predicted.

6. In the blessing of Judah also this same thing is signified, where there also is expressed a figure of Christ, that He should have praise and worship from his brethren; that He should press down the back of His enemies yielding and fleeing, with the hands with which He bore the cross and conquered death; and that He Himself is the Lion of the tribe of Judah, and should couch sleeping in His passion, and should rise up, and should Himself be the hope of the Gentiles. To which things divine Scripture adds, and says, “He shall wash His garment in wine, and His clothing in the blood of the grape.”12 But when the blood of the grape is mentioned, what else is set forth than the wine of the cup of the blood of the Lord?
Roberts, A., Donaldson, J., & Coxe, A. C. 1997. The Ante-Nicene Fathers Vol. V : Translations of the writings of the Fathers down to A.D. 325. Fathers of the Third Century: Hippolytus,Cyprian, Novatian, Appendix. Logos Research Systems: Oak Harbor
For if Jesus Christ, our Lord and God, is Himself the chief priest of God the Father, and has first offered Himself a sacrifice to the Father, and has commanded this to be done in commemoration of Himself, certainly that priest truly discharges the office of Christ, who imitates that which Christ did; and he then offers a true and full sacrifice in the Church to God the Father, when he proceeds to offer it according to what he sees Christ Himself to have offered.

15.But the discipline of all religion and truth is overturned, unless what is spiritually prescribed be faithfully observed; unless indeed any one should fear in the morning sacrifices,33 lest by the taste of wine he should be redolent of the blood of Christ. Therefore thus the brotherhood is beginning even to be kept back from the passion of Christ in persecutions, by learning in the offerings to be disturbed concerning His blood and His blood-shedding. Moreover, however, the Lord says in the Gospel, “Whosoever shall be ashamed of me, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed.”34 And the apostle also speaks, saying, “If I pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”35 But how can we shed our blood for Christ, who blush to drink the blood of Christ?

16. Does any one perchance flatter himself with this notion, that although in the morning, water alone is seen to be offered, yet when we come to supper we offer the mingled cup? But when we sup, we cannot call the people together to our banquet, so as to celebrate the truth of the sacrament in the presence of all the brotherhood.36 But still it was not in the morning, but after supper, that the Lord offered the mingled cup. Ought we then to celebrate the Lord’s cup after supper, that so by continual repetition of the Lord’s supper37 we may offer the mingled cup? It behoved Christ to offer about the evening of the day, that the very hour of sacrifice might show the setting and the evening of the world; as it is written in Exodus, “And all the people of the synagogue of the children of Israel shall kill it in the evening.”38 And again in the Psalms, “Let the lifting up of my hands be an evening sacrifice.”39 But we celebrate the resurrection of the Lord in the morning.
17. And because we make mention of His passion in all sacrifices (for the Lord’s passion is the sacrifice which we offer), we ought to do nothing else than what He did. For Scripture says, “For as often as ye eat this bread and drink this cup, ye do show forth the Lord’s death till He come.”40 As often, therefore, as we offer the cup in commemoration of the Lord and of His passion, let us do what it is known the Lord did. And let this conclusion be reached, dearest brother: if from among our predecessors any have either by ignorance or simplicity not observed and kept this which the Lord by His example and teaching has instructed us to do, he may, by the mercy of the Lord, have pardon granted to his simplicity. But we cannot be pardoned who are now admonished and instructed by the Lord to offer the cup of the Lord mingled with wine according to what the Lord offered, and to direct letters to our colleagues also about this, so that the evangelical law and the Lord’s tradition may be everywhere kept, and there be no departure from what Christ both taught and did.
    O God, most glorious, most bountiful, accept, we humbly beseech thee, our praises and thanksgivings for thy holy Catholic Church, the mother of us all who bear the name of Christ; for the faith which it hath conveyed in safety to our time, and the mercies by which it hath enlarged and comforted the souls of men; for the virtues which it hath established upon earth, and the holy lives by which it glorifieth both the world and thee; to whom, O blessed Trinity (+), be ascribed all honour, might, majesty and dominion, now and for ever. Amen.
    --Bishop Lancelot Andrewes

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