The Eucharist (//; also called Holy Communion or the Lord's Supper among other names) is a Christian rite that is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. According to the New Testament, the rite was instituted by Jesus Christ during the Last Supper; giving his disciples bread and wine during a Passover meal, Jesus commanded his followers to "do this in memory of me" while referring to the bread as "my body" and the cup of wine as "the new covenant in my blood". Through the eucharistic celebration Christians remember both Christ's sacrifice of himself on the cross and his commission of the apostles at the Last Supper.
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The elements of the Eucharist, sacramental bread (leavened or unleavened) and sacramental wine (or by some grape juice), are consecrated on an altar (or a communion table) and consumed thereafter. Communicants, those who consume the elements, may speak of "receiving the Eucharist" as well as "celebrating the Eucharist". Christians generally recognize a special presence of Christ in this rite, though they differ about exactly how, where, and when Christ is present. While all agree that there is no perceptible change in the appearances of the elements (smell, taste, color, weight, fragility, nutritional effects, etc.), Roman Catholics believe that their substances actually become the body and blood of Christ (transubstantiation) while the appearances or "species" of the elements remain. Lutherans believe the true body and blood of Christ are really present "in, with, and under" the forms of the bread and wine (sacramental union). Reformed Christians believe in a real spiritual presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Anglican eucharistic theologies universally affirm the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, though Evangelical Anglicans believe that this is a spiritual presence, while those of an Anglo-Catholic churchmanship believe this is a corporeal presence. Others, such as the Plymouth Brethren, take the act to be only a symbolic reenactment of the Last Supper and a memorial.
In spite of differences among Christians about various aspects of the Eucharist, there is, according to the Encyclopædia Britannica, "more of a consensus among Christians about the meaning of the Eucharist than would appear from the confessional debates over the sacramental presence, the effects of the Eucharist, and the proper auspices under which it may be celebrated".
The Greek noun εὐχαριστία (eucharistia), meaning "thanksgiving", appears fifteen times in the New Testament but is not used as an official name for the rite; however, the related verb is found in New Testament accounts of the Last Supper, including the earliest such account:
For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks (εὐχαριστήσας), he broke it, and said, "This is my body which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me". (1 Corinthians 11:23–24)
The term "Eucharist" (thanksgiving) is that by which the rite is referred to by the Didache (late 1st or early 2nd century), Ignatius of Antioch (who died between 98 and 117) and Justin Martyr (writing between 147 and 167). Today, "the Eucharist" is the name still used by Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Presbyterians, and Lutherans. Other Protestant or Evangelical denominations rarely use this term, preferring either "Communion", "the Lord's Supper", "Memorial", "Remembrance", or "the Breaking of Bread". Latter-day Saints call it "Sacrament".
When you come together, it is not the Lord's Supper you eat, for as you eat, each of you goes ahead without waiting for anybody else. One remains hungry, another gets drunk.
Those who use the term "Eucharist" rarely use the expression "the Lord's Supper", but it is the predominant term among Evangelical, Baptist, and Pentecostal churches, who generally avoid using the term "Communion" due to its use within Catholicism. They also refer to the observance as an "ordinance". Those Protestant churches generally avoid the term "sacrament".
Use of the term Holy Communion (or simply Communion) to refer to the Eucharistic rite began by some groups originating in the Protestant Reformation. Others, such as the Catholic Church, do not formally use this term for the rite, but instead mean by it the act of partaking of the consecrated elements; they speak of receiving Holy Communion even outside of the rite, and of participating in the rite without receiving First Holy Communion. The term Communion is derived from Latin communio ("sharing in common"), which translates Greek κοινωνία (koinōnía) in 1 Corinthians 10:16:
The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?
Breaking of bread
The phrase κλάσις τοῦ ἄρτου (klasis tou artou 'breaking of the bread'; in later liturgical Greek also ἀρτοκλασία artoklasia) appears in various related forms five times in the New Testament (Luke 24:35; Acts 2:42, 2:46, 20:7 and 20:11) in contexts which, according to some, may refer to the celebration of the Eucharist, in either closer or symbolically more distant reference to the Last Supper. It is the term used by the Plymouth Brethren.
Sacrament or Blessed Sacrament
The "Blessed Sacrament" and the "Blessed Sacrament of the Altar" are common terms used by Catholics, Lutherans and some Anglicans (Anglo-Catholicism) for the consecrated elements, especially when reserved in a tabernacle. "Sacrament of the Altar" is in common use also among Lutherans. In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the term "The Sacrament" is used of the rite.
Mass is used in the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, the Lutheran churches (especially in the Church of Sweden, the Church of Norway, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland), by many Anglicans (especially those of an Anglo-Catholic churchmanship), and in some other forms of Western Christianity. At least in the Catholic Church, the Mass is a longer rite which always consists of two main parts: the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist, in that order. The Liturgy of the Word consists mainly of readings from scripture (the Bible) and a homily preached by a priest or deacon and is essentially distinct and separate from the Sacrament of the Eucharist, which comprises the entirety of the Liturgy of the Eucharist, so the Eucharist itself is only about one half of the Mass. (It is also possible and permissible in the Latin Rite for a priest to consecrate and distribute the Eucharist outside the ritual structure of the Mass—such an event is often called a communion service—but it is much more common to celebrate a full Mass.) Among the many other terms used in the Catholic Church are "Holy Mass", "the Memorial of the Passion, Death and Resurrection of the Lord", the "Holy Sacrifice of the Mass", and the "Holy Mysteries". The term mass derives from post-classical Latin missa ("dismissal"), found in the concluding phrase of the liturgy, "Ite, missa est". The term missa has come to imply a 'mission', because at the end of the Mass the congregation are sent out to serve Christ.
Divine Liturgy and Divine Service
The term Divine Liturgy (Greek: Θεία Λειτουργία) is used in Byzantine Rite traditions, whether in the Eastern Orthodox Church or among the Eastern Catholic Churches. These also speak of "the Divine Mysteries", especially in reference to the consecrated elements, which they also call "the Holy Gifts".
The term Divine Service (German: Gottesdienst) is used in the Lutheran Churches, in addition to the terms "Eucharist", "Mass" and "Holy Communion". The term reflects the Lutheran belief that God is serving the congregants in the liturgy.
The Last Supper appears in all three Synoptic Gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke. It also is found in the First Epistle to the Corinthians, which suggests how early Christians celebrated what Paul the Apostle called the Lord's Supper. Although the Gospel of John does not reference the Last Supper explicitly, some argue that it contains theological allusions to the early Christian celebration of the Eucharist, especially in the chapter 6 Bread of Life Discourse but also in other passages.
Paul the Apostle and the Lord's Supper
In his First Epistle to the Corinthians (c. 54–55), Paul the Apostle gives the earliest recorded description of Jesus' Last Supper: "The Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, 'This is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me.'[1 Cor. 11:23–25] Those interested might note that the Greek word for remembrance is ἀνάμνησιν or "anamnesis", which itself has a much richer theological history than the English word for "remember".
The synoptic gospels, Mark 14:22–25, Matthew 26:26–29 and Luke 22:13–20, depict Jesus as presiding over the Last Supper prior to his crucifixion. The versions in Matthew and Mark are almost identical, but Luke's Gospel presents a textual problem in that a few manuscripts omit the second half of verse 19 and all of v.20 ("given for you … poured out for you"), which are found in the vast majority of ancient witnesses to the text. If the shorter text is the original one, then Luke's account is independent of both that of Paul and that of Matthew/Mark. If the majority longer text comes from the author of the third gospel, then this version is very similar to that of Paul in 1 Corinthians, being somewhat fuller in its description of the early part of the Supper, particularly in making specific mention of a cup being blessed before the bread was broken.
Uniquely, in the one prayer given to posterity by Jesus, the Lord's Prayer, the word epiousios—which does not exist in Classical Greek literature—has been interpreted by some as meaning "super-substantial", a reference to the Bread of Life, the Eucharist.
In the gospel of John, however, the account of the Last Supper does not mention Jesus taking bread and "the cup" and speaking of them as his body and blood; instead, it recounts other events: his humble act of washing the disciples' feet, the prophecy of the betrayal, which set in motion the events that would lead to the cross, and his long discourse in response to some questions posed by his followers, in which he went on to speak of the importance of the unity of the disciples with him, with each other, and with the Father. Some would find in this unity and in the washing of the feet the deeper meaning of the Communion bread in the other three gospels. In John 6:26–65, the evangelist attributes a long discourse to Jesus that deals with the subject of the living bread and in verses 52–59 contains echoes of Eucharistic language. The interpretation of the whole passage has been extensively debated due to theological and scholarly disagreements. Sir Edwyn Hoskyns notes three main schools of thought: (a) the language is metaphorical, and verse 63: "The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life" gives the author's precise meaning; (b) vv 51–58 are a later interpolation that cannot be harmonized with the context; (c) the discourse is homogeneous, sacrificial, and sacramental and can be harmonized, though not all attempts are satisfactory.
The expression The Lord's Supper, derived from St. Paul's usage in 1 Cor. 11:17–34, may have originally referred to the Agape feast (or love feast), the shared communal meal with which the Eucharist was originally associated. The Agape feast is mentioned in Jude 12 but The Lord's Supper is now commonly used in reference to a celebration involving no food other than the sacramental bread and wine.
Early Christian sources
The Didache (Greek: Διδαχή "teaching") is an early Church treatise that includes instructions for Baptism and the Eucharist. Most scholars date it to the late 1st century, and distinguish in it two separate Eucharistic traditions, the earlier tradition in chapter 10 and the later one preceding it in chapter 9. The Eucharist is mentioned again in chapter 14.
Ignatius of Antioch (born c. 35 or 50, died between 98 and 117), one of the Apostolic Fathers, mentions the Eucharist as "the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ", and Justin Martyr speaks of it as more than a meal: "the food over which the prayer of thanksgiving, the word received from Christ, has been said ... is the flesh and blood of this Jesus who became flesh ... and the deacons carry some to those who are absent."
Paschasius Radbertus (785–865) was a Carolingian theologian, and the abbot of Corbie, whose most well-known and influential work is an exposition on the nature of the Eucharist written around 831, entitled De Corpore et Sanguine Domini. He was canonized in 1073 by Pope Gregory VII. His works are edited in Patrologia Latina vol. 120 (1852).
Most Christians, even those who deny that there is any real change in the elements used, recognize a special presence of Christ in this rite. But Christians differ about exactly how, where and how long Christ is present in it. Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, and the Church of the East teach that the reality (the "substance") of the elements of bread and wine is wholly changed into the body and blood of Jesus Christ, while the appearances (the "species") remain. The Orthodox use various terms such as Transelementation, but no 'explanation' is official as they prefer to leave it a mystery; transubstantiation is rejected as a philosophical definition and suspect because of the idea of substances smacks of magic. Transubstantiation (change of the reality) is the term used by Catholics to denote what is changed, not to explain how the change occurs, since the Roman Catholic Church teaches that "the signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ". Lutherans and Reformed Christians believe that the whole Christ, including the body and blood of Jesus, are present in the supper, a concept known as the sacramental union. Lutherans specify that Christ is "in, with and under" the forms of bread and wine. Anglicans adhere to a range of views although the teaching in the Articles of Religion holds that body of Christ is received by the faithful only in a heavenly and spiritual manner. Some Christians do not believe in the concept of the real presence, believing that the Eucharist is only a ceremonial remembrance or memorial of the death of Christ.
The Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry document of the World Council of Churches, attempting to present the common understanding of the Eucharist on the part of the generality of Christians, describes it as "essentially the sacrament of the gift which God makes to us in Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit", "Thanksgiving to the Father", "Anamnesis or Memorial of Christ", "the sacrament of the unique sacrifice of Christ, who ever lives to make intercession for us", "the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ, the sacrament of his real presence", "Invocation of the Spirit", "Communion of the Faithful", and "Meal of the Kingdom".
Ritual and liturgy
Many Christian denominations classify the Eucharist as a sacrament. Some Protestants (though not all) prefer to instead call it an ordinance, viewing it not as a specific channel of divine grace but as an expression of faith and of obedience to Christ.
Roman Catholic Church
In the Catholic Church the Eucharist is considered as a sacrament, according to the Church the Eucharist is "the source and summit of the Christian life." "The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch."
As a sacrifice
In the Eucharist the same sacrifice that Jesus made only once on the cross is made present at every Mass. According to Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church "The Eucharist is the very sacrifice of the Body and Blood of the Lord Jesus which he instituted to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until his return in glory. Thus he entrusted to his Church this memorial of his death and Resurrection. It is a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a paschal banquet, in which Christ is consumed, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us."
For the Catholic Church the Eucharist is the memorial of Christ's Passover, the making present and the sacramental offering of his unique sacrifice, in the liturgy of the Church which is his Body... the memorial is not merely the recollection of past events but ... they become in a certain way present and real. When the Church celebrates the Eucharist, she commemorates Christ's Passover, and it is made present the sacrifice Christ offered once for all on the cross remains ever present. The Eucharist is thus a sacrifice because it re-presents (makes present) the same and only sacrifice offered once for all on the cross, because it is its memorial and because it applies its fruit.
The sacrifice of Christ and the sacrifice of the Eucharist are one single sacrifice: "The victim is one and the same: the same now offers through the ministry of priests, who then offered himself on the cross; only the manner of offering is different." "And since in this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the Mass, the same Christ who offered himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and is offered in an unbloody manner. . . this sacrifice is truly propitiatory."
However, as modern historical and Biblical studies have shown, using the word "propitiation", while it was St. Jerome's translation of the Vulgate, is misleading for describing the sacrifice of Jesus and its Eucharistic remembrance. One expression of the conclusion of theologians is that sacrifice "is not something human beings do to God (that would be propitiation) but something which God does for human kind (which is expiation)."
The only ministers who can officiate at the Eucharist and consecrate the sacrament are ordained priests (either bishops or presbyters) acting in the person of Christ ("in persona Christi"). In other words, the priest celebrant represents Christ, who is the Head of the Church, and acts before God the Father in the name of the Church, always using "we" not "I" during the Eucharistic prayer . The matter used must be wheaten bread and grape wine; this is considered essential for validity.
As a real presence
The Catholic Church teaches that Jesus is present in a true, real and substantial way, with his Body and his Blood, with his Soul and his Divinity under the Eucharistic species of bread and wine, Christ whole and entire, God and Man. During the consecration of bread and wine, both bread and wine become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. The change of the whole substance of bread into the substance of the Body of Christ and of the whole substance of wine into the substance of his Blood is called transubstantiation. This change is brought about in the eucharistic prayer through the efficacy of the word of Christ and by the action of the Holy Spirit. However, the outward characteristics of bread and wine, that is the "eucharistic species", remain unaltered. The presence of Christ continues in the Eucharist as long as the eucharistic species subsist. that is, until the Eucharist is digested, physically destroyed, or decays by some natural process (at which point Aquinas argued that the substance of the bread and wine cannot return). The empirical appearance and physical properties (called the species or accidents) are not changed, but in the view of Catholics, the reality (called the substance) indeed is; hence the term transubstantiation to describe the phenomenon. The Council of Trent declares that by the consecration of the bread (known as the Host) and wine "there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation." The Church holds that the body and blood of Jesus can no longer be truly separated. Where one is, the other must be. Therefore, although the priest (or extraordinary minister of Holy Communion) says "The Body of Christ" when administering the Host and "The Blood of Christ" when presenting the chalice, the communicant who receives either one receives Christ, whole and entire. "The Eucharistic presence of Christ begins at the moment of the consecration and endures as long as the Eucharistic species subsist. Christ is present whole and entire in each of the species and whole and entire in each of their parts, in such a way that the breaking of the bread does not divide Christ."
The Roman Catholic Church sees as the main basis for this belief the words of Jesus himself at his Last Supper: the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew 26:26–28; Mark 14:22–24; Luke 22:19–20) and Saint Paul's 1 Cor. 11:23–25 recount that in that context Jesus said of what to all appearances were bread and wine: "This is my body … this is my blood." The Catholic understanding of these words, from the Patristic authors onward, has emphasized their roots in the covenantal history of the Old Testament. The interpretation of Christ's words against this Old Testament background coheres with and supports belief in the Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist.
In 1551, the Council of Trent definitively declared, "Because Christ our Redeemer said that it was truly his body that he was offering under the species of bread,[Jn. 6:51] it has always been the conviction of the Church of God, and this holy Council now declares again that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation." The Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215 had spoken of "Jesus Christ, whose body and blood are truly contained in the sacrament of the altar under the forms of bread and wine, the bread being changed (transsubstantiatis) by divine power into the body and the wine into the blood." The attempt by some twentieth-century Catholic theologians to present the Eucharistic change as an alteration of significance (transignification rather than transubstantiation) was rejected by Pope Paul VI in his 1965 encyclical letter Mysterium fidei. In his 1968 Credo of the People of God, he reiterated that any theological explanation of the doctrine must hold to the twofold claim that, after the consecration, 1) Christ's body and blood are really present; and 2) bread and wine are really absent; and this presence and absence is real and not merely something in the mind of the believer.
On entering a church, Latin Church Catholics genuflect to the tabernacle that holds the consecrated host in order to respectfully acknowledge the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, a presence signalled by a sanctuary lamp or votive candle kept burning close to such a tabernacle. (If there is no such burning light, it indicates that the tabernacle is empty of the special presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.) Catholics will also often kneel or sit before the tabernacle, when the sanctuary light is lit, to pray directly to Jesus, materially present in the form of the Eucharist. Similarly, the consecrated Eucharistic host—the unleavened bread—is sometimes exposed on the altar, usually in an ornamental fixture called a Monstrance, so that Catholics may pray or contemplate in the direct presence and in direct view of Jesus in the Eucharist; this is sometimes called "exposition of the Blessed Sacrament", and the prayer and contemplation in front of the exposed Eucharist are often called "adoration of the Blessed Sacrament" or just "adoration". All of these practices stem from belief in the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist, which is an essential Article of Faith of the Catholic Church.
According to the Catholic Church doctrine receiving the Eucharist in a state of mortal sin is a sacrilege and only those who are in a state of grace, that is, without any mortal sin, can receive it. Based on 1 Corinthians 11:27-29 it affirms the following: "Anyone who is aware of having committed a mortal sin must not receive Holy Communion, even if he experiences deep contrition, without having first received sacramental absolution, unless he has a grave reason for receiving Communion and there is no possibility of going to confession."
Within Eastern Christianity, the Eucharistic service is called the Divine Liturgy (Byzantine Rite) or similar names in other rites. It comprises two main divisions: the first is the Liturgy of the Catechumens which consists of introductory litanies, antiphons and scripture readings, culminating in a reading from one of the Gospels and, often, a homily; the second is the Liturgy of the Faithful in which the Eucharist is offered, consecrated, and received as Holy Communion. Within the latter, the actual Eucharistic prayer is called the anaphora, literally: "offering" or "carrying up" (ἀνα- + φέρω). In the Rite of Constantinople, two different anaphoras are currently used: one is attributed to Saint John Chrysostom, the other to Saint Basil the Great. In the Oriental Orthodox Church, a variety of anaphoras are used, but all are similar in structure to those of the Constantinopolitan Rite, in which the Anaphora of Saint John Chrysostom is used most days of the year; Saint Basil's is offered on the Sundays of Great Lent, the eves of Christmas and Theophany, Holy Thursday, Holy Saturday, and upon his feast day (1 January). At the conclusion of the Anaphora the bread and wine are held to be the Body and Blood of Christ. Unlike the Latin Church, the Byzantine Rite uses leavened bread, with the leaven symbolizing the presence of the Holy Spirit. The Armenian Apostolic Church, like the Latin Church, uses unleavened bread, whereas the Greek Orthodox Church utilizes leavened bread in their celebration.
Conventionally this change in the elements is understood to be accomplished at the Epiclesis ("invocation") by which the Holy Spirit is invoked and the consecration of the bread and wine as the true and genuine Body and Blood of Christ is specifically requested, but since the anaphora as a whole is considered a unitary (albeit lengthy) prayer, no one moment within it can be readily singled out.
Anglican eucharistic theology is not merely memorialist (the belief that nothing special happens at the Lord's Supper other than devotional reflection on Christ's death). Editions of the Book of Common Prayer from 1559 onwards repeatedly refuse to define the Presence most often referred to as the spiritual food of the Most Precious Body and Blood. The Words of Administration allowed for a Real Presence interpretation. Consecration effects a change, Christ is present objectively which does not depend on the faith of the recipient, but the Church refused to define the 'how' (and still does) asking that the bread and wine 'be' the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ rather than 'become.'
The so-called 'Black Rubric' in the 1552 Prayer Book which allowed kneeling for communion but denied the real and essential presence of Christ in the elements was omitted in the 1559 edition at the Queen's insistence. It was re-instated in the 1662 Book modified to deny any corporeal presence to suggest Christ was present in his natural Body. The bread and wine are held to be outward symbols of an inward and spiritual grace received by the faithful as the instruments of God's grace and Jesus' self-offering to the communicant.
In most parishes of the Anglican Communion the Eucharist is celebrated every Sunday, having replaced Morning Prayer as the principal service. The rites for the Eucharist are found in the various prayer books of the Anglican churches. Wine and unleavened wafers or unleavened bread is used. Daily celebrations are the norm in many cathedrals and parish churches sometimes offer one or more services of Holy Communion during the week. The nature of the liturgy varies according to the theological tradition of the priests, parishes, dioceses and regional churches.
The bread and "fruit of the vine" indicated in Matthew, Mark and Luke as the elements of the Lord's Supper are interpreted by many Baptists as unleavened bread (although leavened bread is often used) and, in line with the historical stance of some Baptist groups (since the mid-19th century) against partaking of alcoholic beverages, grape juice, which they commonly refer to simply as "the Cup". The unleavened bread also underscores the symbolic belief attributed to Christ's breaking the bread and saying that it was his body. A soda cracker is often used.
Most Baptists consider the Communion to be primarily an act of remembrance of Christ's atonement, and a time of renewal of personal commitment.
However, with the rise of confessionalism, some Baptists have denied the Zwinglian doctrine of mere memorialism and have taken up a Reformed view of Communion. Confessional Baptists believe in pneumatic presence, which is expressed in the Second London Baptist Confession, specifically in Chapter 30, Articles 3 and 7. This view is prevalent among Southern Baptists, those in the Founders movement (a Calvinistic movement within the some Independent Baptists), Freewill Baptists, and several individuals in other Baptist associations.
Communion practices and frequency vary among congregations. A typical practice is to have small cups of juice and plates of broken bread distributed to the seated congregation. In other congregations, communicants may proceed to the altar to receive the elements, then return to their seats. A widely accepted practice is for all to receive and hold the elements until everyone is served, then consume the bread and cup in unison. Usually, music is performed and Scripture is read during the receiving of the elements.
Some Baptist churches are closed-Communionists (even requiring full membership in the church before partaking), with others being partially or fully open-Communionists. It is rare to find a Baptist church where The Lord's Supper is observed every Sunday; most observe monthly or quarterly, with some holding Communion only during a designated Communion service or following a worship service. Adults and children in attendance, who have not made a profession of faith in Christ, are expected to not participate.
Lutherans believe that the body and blood of Christ are "truly and substantially present in, with, and under the forms" of the consecrated bread and wine (the elements), so that communicants eat and drink the body and blood of Christ himself as well as the bread and wine in this sacrament. The Lutheran doctrine of the Real Presence is more accurately and formally known as the "sacramental union". It has been called "consubstantiation" by non-Lutherans. This term is specifically rejected by Lutheran churches and theologians since it creates confusion about the actual doctrine and subjects the doctrine to the control of a non-biblical philosophical concept in the same manner as, in their view, does the term "transubstantiation".
While an official movement exists in Lutheran congregations to celebrate Eucharist weekly, using formal rites very similar to the Catholic and "high" Anglican services, it was historically common for congregations to celebrate monthly or even quarterly. Even in congregations where Eucharist is offered weekly, there is not a requirement that every church service be a Eucharistic service, nor that all members of a congregation must receive it weekly.
Mennonites and Anabaptists
Traditional Mennonite and German Baptist Brethren Churches such as the Church of the Brethren churches and congregations have the Agape Meal, footwashing and the serving of the bread and wine two parts to the Communion service in the Lovefeast. In the more modern groups, Communion is only the serving of the Lord's Supper. In the communion meal, the members of the Mennonite churches renew their covenant with God and with each other.
Open Brethren and Exclusive Brethren
Among Open assemblies, also termed Plymouth Brethren, the Eucharist is more commonly called the Breaking of Bread or the Lord's Supper. It is seen as a symbolic memorial and is central to the worship of both individual and assembly. In principle, the service is open to all baptized Christians, but an individual's eligibility to participate depends on the views of each particular assembly. The service takes the form of non-liturgical, open worship with all male participants allowed to pray audibly and select hymns or readings. The breaking of bread itself typically consists of one leavened loaf, which is prayed over and broken by a participant in the meeting and then shared around. The wine is poured from a single container into one or several vessels, and these are again shared around.
In the Reformed Churches the Eucharist is variously administered. The Calvinist view of the Sacrament sees a real presence of Christ in the supper which differs both from the objective ontological presence of the Catholic view, and from the real absence of Christ and the mental recollection of the memorialism of the Zwinglians and their successors.
The bread and wine become the means by which the believer has real communion with Christ in his death and Christ's body and blood are present to the faith of the believer as really as the bread and wine are present to their senses but this presence is "spiritual", that is the work of the Holy Spirit. There is no standard frequency; John Calvin desired weekly communion, but the city council only approved monthly, and monthly celebration has become the most common practice in Reformed churches today.
Many, on the other hand, follow John Knox in celebration of the Lord's supper on a quarterly basis, to give proper time for reflection and inward consideration of one's own state and sin. Recently, Presbyterian and Reformed Churches have been considering whether to restore more frequent communion, including weekly communion in more churches, considering that infrequent communion was derived from a memorialist view of the Lord's Supper, rather than Calvin's view of the sacrament as a means of grace. Some churches use bread without any raising agent (whether leaven or yeast), in view of the use of unleavened bread at Jewish Passover meals, while others use any bread available.
The Presbyterian Church (USA), for instance, prescribes "bread common to the culture". Harking back to the regulative principle of worship, the Reformed tradition had long eschewed coming forward to receive communion, preferring to have the elements distributed throughout the congregation by the presbyters (elders) more in the style of a shared meal. Over the last half a century it is much more common in Presbyterian churches to have Holy Communion monthly or on a weekly basis. It is also becoming common to receive the elements by intinction (receiving a piece of consecrated bread or wafer, dipping it in the blessed wine, and consuming it) Wine and grape juice are both used, depending on the congregation.
Most Reformed churches practice open communion", i.e., all believers who are united to a church of like faith and practice, and who are not living in sin, would be allowed to join in the Sacrament.
The Catechism for the use of the people called Methodists states that, "[in the Eucharist] Jesus Christ is present with his worshipping people and gives himself to them as their Lord and Saviour". Methodist theology of this sacrament is reflected in one of the fathers of the movement, Charles Wesley, who wrote a Eucharistic hymn with the following stanza:
- We need not now go up to Heaven,
- To bring the long sought Saviour down;
- Thou art to all already given,
- Thou dost e’en now Thy banquet crown:
- To every faithful soul appear,
- And show Thy real presence here!
Reflecting Wesleyan covenant theology, Methodists also believe that the Lord's Supper is a sign and seal of the covenant of grace. In many Methodist denominations, non-alcoholic wine (grape juice) is used, so as to include those who do not take alcohol for any reason, as well as a commitment to the Church's historical support of temperance. Variations of the Eucharistic Prayer are provided for various occasions, including communion of the sick and brief forms for occasions that call for greater brevity. Though the ritual is standardized, there is great variation amongst Methodist churches, from typically high-church to low-church, in the enactment and style of celebration. Methodist clergy are not required to be vested when celebrating the Eucharist.
John Wesley, a founder of Methodism, said that it was the duty of Christians to receive the sacrament as often as possible. Methodists in the United States are encouraged to celebrate the Eucharist every Sunday, though it is typically celebrated on the first Sunday of each month, while a few go as long as celebrating quarterly (a tradition dating back to the days of circuit riders that served multiple churches). Communicants may receive standing, kneeling, or while seated. Gaining more wide acceptance is the practice of receiving by intinction (receiving a piece of consecrated bread or wafer, dipping it in the blessed wine, and consuming it). The most common alternative to intinction is for the communicants to receive the consecrated juice using small, individual, specially made glass or plastic cups known as communion cups. The United Methodist Church practices open communion, inviting "all who intend a Christian life, together with their children" to receive Communion.
Nondenominational and other Christians
Many non-denominational Christians, including the Churches of Christ, receive communion every Sunday. Others, including Evangelical churches such as the Church of God, Calvary Chapel, and many forms of Baptist, typically receive communion on a monthly or periodic basis. Many non-denominational Christians hold to the Biblical autonomy of local churches and have no universal requirement among congregations.
Other Christian churches
Holy Qurbana or Qurbana Qadisha, the "Holy Offering" or "Holy Sacrifice", refers to the Eucharist as celebrated according to the East Syrian and West Syrian traditions of Syriac Christianity. The main Anaphora of the East Syrian tradition is the Holy Qurbana of Addai and Mari, while that of the West Syrian tradition is the Liturgy of Saint James. Both are extremely old, going back at least to the third century, and are the oldest extant liturgies continually in use.
In the Seventh-day Adventist Church the Holy Communion service customarily is celebrated once per quarter. The service includes the ordinance of footwashing and the Lord's Supper. Unleavened bread and unfermented (non-alcoholic) grape juice is used. Open communion is practised: all who have committed their lives to the Saviour may participate. The communion service must be conducted by an ordained pastor, minister or church elder.
The Christian Congregation of Jehovah's Witnesses commemorates Christ's death as a ransom or propitiatory sacrifice by observing a Memorial annually on the evening that corresponds to the Passover, Nisan 14, according to the ancient Jewish calendar. They refer to this observance generally as "the Lord's Evening Meal" or the "Memorial of Christ's Death", taken from Jesus' words to his Apostles "do this as a memorial of me". (Luke 22:19) They believe that this is the only annual religious observance commanded for Christians in the Bible.
Of those who attend the Memorial a small minority worldwide partake of the wine and unleavened bread. Jehovah's Witnesses believe that only 144,000 people will receive heavenly salvation and immortal life and thus spend eternity with God and Christ in heaven, with glorified bodies, as under-priests and co-rulers under Christ the King and High Priest, in Jehovah's Kingdom. Paralleling the anointing of kings and priests, they are referred to as the "anointed" class and are the only ones who should partake of the bread and wine. They believe that the baptized "other sheep" of Christ's flock, or the "great crowd", also benefit from the ransom sacrifice, and are respectful observers and viewers of the Lord's Supper remembrance at these special meetings of Jehovah's witnesses, with hope of receiving salvation, through Christ's atoning sacrifice, which is memorialized by the Lord's Evening Meal, and with the hope of obtaining everlasting life in Paradise restored on a prophesied "New Earth", under Christ as Redeemer and Ruler.
The Memorial, held after sundown, includes a sermon on the meaning and importance of the celebration and gathering, and includes the circulation and viewing among the audience of unadulterated red wine and unleavened bread (matzo). Jehovah's Witnesses believe that the bread symbolizes and represents Jesus Christ's perfect body which he gave on behalf of mankind, and that the wine represents his perfect blood which he shed at Calvary and redeems fallen man from inherited sin and death. The wine and the bread (sometimes referred to as "emblems") are viewed as symbolic and commemorative; the Witnesses do not believe in transubstantiation or consubstantiation; so not a literal presence of flesh and blood in the emblems, but that the emblems are simply sacred symbolisms and representations, denoting what was used in the first Lord's Supper, and which represent spiritual and sacred realities.
In The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), the "Holy Sacrament of the Lord's Supper", more simply referred to as the Sacrament, is administered every Sunday (except General Conference or other special Sunday meeting) in each LDS Ward or branch worldwide at the beginning of Sacrament meeting. The Sacrament, which consists of both ordinary bread and water (rather than wine or grape juice), is prepared by priesthood holders prior to the beginning of the meeting. At the beginning of the Sacrament, priests say specific prayers to bless the bread and water. The Sacrament is passed row-by-row to the congregation by priesthood holders (typically deacons).
The prayer recited for the bread and the water is found in the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants. The ancient American prayer contains the above essentials given by Jesus: "Always remember him, and keep his commandments …, that they may always have his Spirit to be with them." (Moroni, 4:3.)
While the Salvation Army does not reject the Eucharistic practices of other churches or deny that their members truly receive grace through this sacrament, it does not practice the sacraments of Communion or baptism. This is because they believe that these are unnecessary for the living of a Christian life, and because in the opinion of Salvation Army founders William and Catherine Booth, the sacrament placed too much stress on outward ritual and too little on inward spiritual conversion.
Emphasizing the inward spiritual experience of their adherents over any outward ritual, Quakers (members of the Religious Society of Friends) generally do not baptize or observe Communion.
Practice and customs
Open and closed communion
Christian denominations differ in their understanding of whether they may celebrate the Eucharist with those with whom they are not in full communion. The apologist Saint Justin Martyr (c. 150) wrote of the Eucharist "of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins and unto regeneration, and who is so living as Christ has enjoined." This was continued in the practice of dismissing the catechumens (those still undergoing instruction and not yet baptized) before the sacramental part of the liturgy, a custom which has left traces in the expression "Mass of the Catechumens and in the Byzantine Rite exclamation by the deacon or priest, "The doors! The doors!", just before recitation of the Creed.
Churches such as the Roman Catholic and the Eastern Orthodox Churches practice closed communion under normal circumstances. However, the Catholic Church allows administration of the Eucharist, at their spontaneous request, to properly disposed members of the eastern churches (Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox and Church of the East) not in full communion with it and of other churches that the Holy See judges to be sacramentally in the same position as these churches; and in grave and pressing need, such as danger of death, it allows the Eucharist to be administered also to individuals who do not belong to these churches but who share the Catholic Church's faith in the reality of the Eucharist and have no access to a minister of their own community. Some Protestant communities exclude non-members from Communion.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) practices open communion, provided those who receive are baptized, but the Lutheran Church–Missouri Synod and the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) practice closed communion, excluding non-members and requiring communicants to have been given catechetical instruction. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, the Evangelical Church in Germany, the Church of Sweden, and many other Lutheran churches outside of the US also practice open communion. Some use the term "close communion" for restriction to members of the same denomination, and "closed communion" for restriction to members of the local congregation alone.
Most Protestant communities including Congregational churches, the Church of the Nazarene, the Assemblies of God, Methodists, most Presbyterians and Baptists, Anglicans, and Churches of Christ and other non-denominational churches practice various forms of open communion. Some churches do not limit it to only members of the congregation, but to any person in attendance (regardless of Christian affiliation) who considers himself/herself to be a Christian. Others require that the communicant be a baptized person, or a member of a church of that denomination or a denomination of "like faith and practice". Some Progressive Christian congregations offer communion to any individual who wishes to commemorate the life and teachings of Christ, regardless of religious affiliation.
In the Episcopal Church (United States), those who do not receive Holy Communion may enter the communion line with their arms crossed over their chest, in order to receive a blessing from the priest, instead of receiving Holy Communion. As a matter of local convention, this practice can also be found in Roman Catholic churches in the United States for Catholics who find themselves, for whatever reason, not in a position to receive the Eucharist itself, as well as for non-Catholics, who are not permitted to receive it.
Most Latter-Day Saint churches practice closed communion; one notable exception is the Community of Christ, the second-largest denomination in this movement. While The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the largest of the LDS denominations) technically practice a closed communion, their official direction to local Church leaders (in Handbook 2, section 20.4.1, last paragraph) is as follows: "Although the sacrament is for Church members, the bishopric should not announce that it will be passed to members only, and nothing should be done to prevent nonmembers from partaking of it."
The Catholic Church requires its members to receive the sacrament of Penance or Reconciliation before taking Communion if they are aware of having committed a mortal sin and to prepare by fasting, prayer, and other works of piety.
Traditionally, the Eastern Orthodox church has required its members to have observed all church-appointed fasts (most weeks, this will be at least Wednesday and Friday) for the week prior to partaking of communion, and to fast from all food and water from midnight the night before. In addition, Orthodox Christians are to have made a recent confession to their priest (the frequency varying with one's particular priest), and they must be at peace with all others, meaning that they hold no grudges or anger against anyone. In addition, one is expected to attend Vespers or the All-Night Vigil, if offered, on the night before receiving communion. Furthermore, various pre-communion prayers have been composed, which many (but not all) Orthodox churches require or at least strongly encourage members to say privately before coming to the Eucharist.
Many Protestant congregations generally reserve a period of time for self-examination and private, silent confession just before partaking in the Lord's Supper.
Seventh-day Adventists, Mennonites, and some other groups participate in "foot washing" (cf. John 13:3–17) as a preparation for partaking in the Lord's Supper. At that time they are to individually examine themselves, and confess any sins they may have between one and another.
Eucharistic adoration is a practice in the Roman Catholic, Anglo-Catholic and some Lutheran traditions, in which the Blessed Sacrament is exposed to and adored by the faithful. When this exposure and adoration is constant (twenty-four hours a day), it is called Perpetual Adoration. In a parish, this is usually done by volunteer parishioners; in a monastery or convent, it is done by the resident monks or nuns. In the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, the Eucharist is displayed in a monstrance, typically placed on an altar, at times with a light focused on it, or with candles flanking it.
The gluten in wheat bread is dangerous to people with celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders, such as non-celiac gluten sensitivity and wheat allergy. For the Catholic Church, this issue was addressed in the 24 July 2003 letter of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which summarized and clarified earlier declarations. The Catholic Church believes that the matter for the Eucharist must be wheaten bread and fermented wine from grapes: it holds that, if the gluten has been entirely removed, the result is not true wheaten bread. For celiacs, but not generally, it allows low-gluten bread. It also permits Holy Communion to be received under the form of either bread or wine alone, except by a priest who is celebrating Mass without other priests or as principal celebrant. Many Protestant churches offer communicants gluten-free alternatives to wheaten bread, usually in the form of a rice-based cracker or gluten-free bread.
The Catholic Church believes that grape juice that has not begun even minimally to ferment cannot be accepted as wine, which it sees as essential for celebration of the Eucharist. For alcoholics, but not generally, it allows the use of mustum (grape juice in which fermentation has begun but has been suspended without altering the nature of the juice), and it holds that "since Christ is sacramentally present under each of the species, communion under the species of bread alone makes it possible to receive all the fruit of Eucharistic grace. For pastoral reasons, this manner of receiving communion has been legitimately established as the most common form in the Latin rite."
As already indicated, the one exception is in the case of a priest celebrating Mass without other priests or as principal celebrant. The water that in the Latin Church is prescribed to be mixed with the wine must be only a relatively small quantity. The practice of the Coptic Church is that the mixture should be two parts wine to one part water.
Many Protestant churches allow clergy and communicants to take mustum instead of wine. In addition to, or in replacement of wine, some churches offer grape juice which has been pasteurized to stop the fermentation process the juice naturally undergoes; de-alcoholized wine from which most of the alcohol has been removed (between 0.5% and 2% remains), or water. Exclusive use of unfermented grape juice is common in Baptist churches, the United Methodist Church, Seventh-day Adventists, Christian Churches/Churches of Christ, Churches of Christ, Church of God (Anderson, Indiana) some Lutherans, Assemblies of God, Pentecostals, Evangelicals, the Christian Missionary Alliance, and other American independent Protestant churches.
Fear of transmission of diseases
Risk of infectious disease transmission related to use of a common communion cup is low, to the point of being undetectable. No case of transmission of an infectious disease related to a common communion cup has ever been documented. The most likely diseases to be transmitted would be common viral illnesses such as the common cold, but a study of 681 individuals found that taking communion up to daily from a common cup did not increase the risk of infection beyond that of those who did not attend services at all.
In influenza epidemics, some churches suspend the giving of communion under the form of wine, for fear of spreading the disease. This is in full accord with Catholic Church belief that communion under the form of bread alone makes it possible to receive all the fruit of Eucharistic grace. However, the same measure has also been taken by churches that normally insist on the importance of receiving communion under both forms. This was done in 2009 by the Church of England.
Some fear contagion through the handling involved in distributing the hosts to the communicants, even if they are placed on the hand rather than on the tongue. Accordingly, some churches use mechanical wafer dispensers or "pillow packs" (communion wafers with wine inside them). While these methods of distributing communion are not accepted in Catholic Church parishes, one such church provides a mechanical dispenser to allow those intending to communicate to place in a bowl, without touching them by hand, the hosts for use in the celebration.
- Eucharistic theology
- Eucharistic theology, Eucharistic theologies summarised
- Eucharistic miracle
- Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist
- Liturgical worship
- Syriac Rite
- Western Rite
- Byzantine Rite
- Canon of the Mass
- Eucharistic Prayers
- Second Vatican Council changes
- Eucharistic practice
- Closed communion
- Communion under both kinds
- First Communion
- Fraction (religion)
- Open communion
- Sacramental wine
- Thanksgiving after Communion
- Views of different churches
- Anglican Eucharistic theology
- Sacrament (Latter Day Saints)
- Sacramental Union (Lutheran)
- Transubstantiation (Catholicism)
- Sacramental theology
- Origin of the Eucharist (The Last Supper)
- Marburg Colloquy (1529)
- Sacramentarians (Protestant Reformation period, approx. 16th Century)
- The Adoration of the Sacrament by Martin Luther (1523)
- Confession Concerning Christ's Supper by Martin Luther (1528)
- Ubiquitarians (1530 and 1540)
- Receptionism (16th and 17th-century Anglicans)
- Year of the Eucharist (2004–2005)
- Host desecration
- Within Oriental Orthodoxy, the "Oblation" is the term used in the Syrian, Coptic and Armenian churches, while "Consecration" is used in the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. "Oblation" and "Consecration" are of course used also by the Eastern Catholic Churches that are of the same liturgical tradition as these churches. Likewise, in the Gaelic language of Ireland and Scotland the word Aifreann, usually translated into English as "Mass", is derived from Late Latin Offerendum, meaning "oblation", "offering".
- 9.1 Concerning the thanksgiving (tēs eucharistias) give thanks thus: 9.2 First, concerning the cup: "We give thanks to you, our Father, For the holy vine of David your servant which you have revealed to us through Jesus your servant. To you be glory for ever". 9.3 And concerning the fragment: "We give thanks to you, our Father, For the life and knowledge, which you have revealed to us through Jesus your servant". But let no one eat or drink of your Eucharist, unless they have been baptized into the name of the Lord; for concerning this also the Lord has said, "Give not that which is holy to the dogs". 10.1 After you have had your fill, give thanks thus: 10.2 We give thanks to you holy Father for your holy Name which you have made to dwell in our hearts and for the knowledge, faith and immortality which you have revealed to us through Jesus your servant. To you be glory for ever. 10.3 You Lord almighty have created everything for the sake of your Name; you have given human beings food and drink to partake with enjoyment so that they might give thanks; but to us you have given the grace of spiritual food and drink and of eternal life through Jesus your servant. 10.4 Above all we give you thanks because you are mighty. To you be glory for ever. 10.5 Remember Lord your Church, to preserve it from all evil and to make it perfect in your love. And, sanctified, gather it from the four winds into your kingdom which you have prepared for it. Because yours is the power and the glory for ever. ...
- 14.1 But every Lord's day do ye gather yourselves together, and break bread, and give thanksgiving after having confessed your transgressions, that your sacrifice may be pure. 14.2. But let no one that is at variance with his fellow come together with you, until they be reconciled, that your sacrifice may not be profaned. 14.3. For this is that which was spoken by the Lord: In every place and time offer to me a pure sacrifice; for I am a great King, saith the Lord, and my name is wonderful among the nations.
- The tradition that Ignatius was a direct disciple of the Apostle John is consistent with the content of his letters.
- " ... (t)he eucharist is the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which flesh suffered for our sins, and which in His loving-kindness the Father raised up. ... Let that eucharist alone be considered valid which is under the bishop or him to whom he commits it. ... It is not lawful apart from the bishop either to baptize, or to hold a love-feast. But whatsoever he approves, that also is well-pleasing to God, that everything which you do may be secure and valid". Letter to the Smyrnaeans, 6, 8 "Give heed to keep one Eucharist. For there is one flesh of our Lord Jesus Christ, and one cup unto union with His blood. There is one altar, as there is one bishop, together with the presbytery and deacons, my fellow-servants; that whatsoever you do, you may do according unto God. "Letter to the Philadelphians, 4
- Canon 1. A misprint in this source gives "transubstantiatio" in place of "transubstantiatis" of the original: "Iesus Christus, cuius corpus et sanguis in sacramento altaris sub speciebus panis et vini veraciter continentur, transsubstantiatis pane in corpus, et vino in sanguinem potestate divina"
- Luke 22:20
- "Encyclopædia Britannica, s.v. Eucharist". Britannica.com. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Ignazio Silone, Bread and Wine (1937).
- A Catechism for the use of people called Methodists. Peterborough, England: Methodist Publishing House. 2000. p. 26. ISBN 978-1858521824.
- "Christianity: Eucharist". BBC. 23 June 2009. Retrieved 22 May 2017.
- Mattox, Mickey L.; Roeber, A. G. (27 February 2012). Changing Churches: An Orthodox, Catholic, and Lutheran Theological Conversation. Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing. p. 54. ISBN 9780802866943.
In this "sacramental union", Lutherans taught, the body and blood of Christ are so truly united to the bread and wine of the Holy Communion that the two may be identified. They are at the same time body and blood, bread and wine. This divine food is given, more-over, not just for the strengthening of faith, nor only as a sign of our unity in faith, nor merely as an assurance of the forgiveness of sin. Even more, in this sacrament the Lutheran Christian receives the very body and blood of Christ precisely for the strengthening of the union of faith. The "real presence" of Christ in the Holy Sacrament is the means by which the union of faith, effected by God's Word and the sacrament of baptism, is strengthened and maintained. Intimate union with Christ, in other words, leads directly to the most intimate communion in his holy body and blood.
- McKim, Donald K. (11 March 1998). Major Themes in the Reformed Tradition. Wipf and Stock Publishers. p. 263. ISBN 9781579101046.
- Campbell 1996, p. 325.
- Gospel Figures in Art by Stefano Zuffi 2003 ISBN 978-0892367276 p. 252
- "Strong's Greek: 2169. εὐχαριστία (eucharistia) - thankfulness, giving of thanks". Biblehub.com. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Eugene LaVerdiere (1996), The Eucharist in the New Testament and the Early Church, Liturgical Press, pp. 1–2, ISBN 978-0814661529
- Thomas R. Schreiner, Matthew R. Crawford, The Lord's Supper (B&H Publishing Group 2011 ISBN 978-0805447576), p. 156
- John H. Armstrong, Understanding Four Views on the Lord's Supper (Zondervan 2009 ISBN 978-0310542759)
- Robert Benedetto, James O. Duke, The New Westminster Dictionary of Church History (Westminster John Knox Press 2008 ISBN 978-0664224165), vol. 2, p. 231
- Eucharist in the New Testament by Jerome Kodell 1988 ISBN 0814656633 p. 51
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- Stanley E. Porter, Dictionary of Biblical Criticism and Interpretation (Taylor & Francis 2007 ISBN 978-0415201001), p. 207
- Eph 13:1; Philad 4; Smyrn 7:1, 8:1
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- Christopher A. Stephenson, Types of Pentecostal Theology: Method, System, Spirit, OUP US, 2012, p. 123
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- Edward E. Hindson, Daniel R. Mitchell, The Popular Encyclopedia of Church History: The People, Places, and Events That Shaped Christianity, Harvest House Publishers, US, 2013, p. 371
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- Oxford English Dictionary, s.v. "mass".
- "Concluding Rites". www.usccb.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
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- Hovhanessian, Vahan (2011), "Badarak (Patarag)", The Encyclopedia of Christian Civilization, American Cancer Society, doi:10.1002/9780470670606.wbecc0112, ISBN 9780470670606
- From Greek προσφορά
- Bradshaw, Paul F.; Johnson, Maxwell E. (1 June 2012). The Eucharistic Liturgies: Their Evolution and Interpretation. Liturgical Press. ISBN 9780814662663.
- Tyndale Bible Dictionary / editors, Philip W. Comfort, Walter A. Elwell, 2001 ISBN 0842370897, article: Lord's Supper, The
- Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church / editors, F. L. Cross & E. A. Livingstone 2005 ISBN 978-0192802903, article Eucharist
- Moloney, Francis (2001). "A Hard Saying" : The Gospel and Culture. The Liturgical Press. pp. 109–30.
- Heron, Alisdair >I.C. Table and Tradition Westminster Press, Philadelphia (1983) p. 3
- Metzger, Bruce M. A Textual Commentary on the New Testament UBS (1971) pp. 173ff
- Heron, Alisdair >I.C. Table and Tradition Westminster Press, Philadelphia (1983) p. 5
- Caird, G.B. The Gospel of Luke Pelican (1963) p. 237
- "Catechism of the Catholic Church". www.vatican.va. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
- Harris, Stephen L., Understanding the Bible. Palo Alto: Mayfield. 1985.
- Tyndale Bible Dictionary / editors, Philip W. Comfort, Walter A. Elwell, 2001 ISBN 0842370897, article: "John, Gospel of"
- "Eucharist and Gospel of John". VatiKos Theologie. 11 October 2013. Archived from the original on 15 October 2013. Retrieved 10 December 2017.
- Hoskyns, Sir Edwyn, The Fourth Gospel, Faber and Faber, 1940, p. 304
- Lambert, J.C. (1978). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (reprint ed.). Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co. ISBN 978-0802880451.
- Bruce Metzger. The canon of the New Testament. 1997
- "There are now two quite separate Eucharistic celebrations given in Didache 9–10, with the earlier one now put in second place". Crossan. The historical Jesus. Citing Riggs, John W. 1984
- "Introduction to the Roberts-Donaldson translation of his writings". Archived from the original Check
|url=value (help) on 29 December 2007. Retrieved 20 October 2007.
- See First Apology, 65–67
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1333 (emphasis added)
- Horton, Michael S. (2008). People and Place: A Covenant Ecclesiology. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press. p. 126. ISBN 978-0664230715.
- "Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry (Faith and Order Paper no. 111, the "Lima Text")". Oikoumene.org. 15 January 1982. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- For example, Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, "Anglo-Catholic" Anglicans, Old Catholics; and cf. the presentation of the Eucharist as a sacrament in the html#c10499 Baptism, Eucharist and Ministry document of the World Council of Churches
- Lumen gentium 11. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
- Presbyterorum ordinis 5. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
- "Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church #271". www.vatican.va. Retrieved 28 December 2018.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church - The sacrament of the Eucharist #1362. Retrieved 16 August 2019.
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- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1367; Council of Trent: Session XXII, chapter 2
- Fides, P. S. (1989). Past Event and Present Salvation. p. 71. ISBN 066425036X.
- Mulcahy, E (2007). Cause Of Our Salvation. Gregorian & Biblical Press. ISBN 978-8878390805.
- Daly, Robert (March 2003). "Sacrifice Unveiled or Sacrifice Revisited". Theological Studies.
- Brown, Raymond E.; et al. (1989). New Jerome Biblical Commentary, 82: 73. Pearson. ISBN 0136149340.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1412; Code of Canon Law, canon 924; Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, canon 705
- "The Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Sacrament of the Eucharist: Basic Questions and Answers". United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- Aquinas, Thomas. "Summa Theologiæ Article 2". New Advent. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- "Council of Trent, Decree concerning the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist, chapter IV and canon II". History.hanover.edu. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Council of Trent, Decree concerning the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist, canon III
- "Catechism of the Catholic Church". The Holy See. The Catholic Church. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- Mulcahy, O.P., Bernard. "The Holy Eucharist" (PDF). kofc.org. Knights of Columbus. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- Aquinas, Thomas. "Summa Theologiae, Question 77". New Advent. Kevin Knight. Retrieved 4 January 2017.
- Under Julius III Council of Trent Session 13 CHAPTER IV. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
- "Catechism of the Catholic Church - The sacrament of the Eucharist #1377". www.vatican.va. Retrieved 28 December 2018.
- ""Abrahamic, Mosaic, and Prophetic Foundations of the Eucharist". Inside the Vatican 16, no. 4 (2008): 102–105". Archived from the original on 10 December 2010. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- CCC 1376
- Session XIII, chapter IV; cf. canon II)
- "Denzinger 8020". Catho.org. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Lesson 28 from the Baltimore Cathechism #368
- Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church # 291. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church #1385. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church #1457. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
- Runciman, Steven (1968). The Great Church in Captivity. Cambridge University Press. p. 90. ISBN 978-0521313100.
- Why do the Orthodox use leavened bread since leaven is a symbol of sin? Is not Christ’s body sinless? Archived 26 August 2018 at the Wayback Machine - orthodoxanswers.org. Retrieved 26 August 2018.
- Matthew 26:26–29, Mark 14:22–25, Luke 22:19
- See, e.g., Graves, J. R. (1928). What is It to Eat and Drink Unworthily. Baptist Sunday School Committee. OCLC 6323560.
- Augsburg Confession, Article 10
- F. L. Cross, ed., The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church, second edition, (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1974), 340 sub loco.
- J. T. Mueller, Christian Dogmatics: A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, (St. Louis: CPH, 1934), 519; cf. also Erwin L. Lueker, Christian Cyclopedia, (St. Louis: CPH, 1975), under the entry "consubstantiation".
- What Lutherans Believe About Holy Communion Archived 20 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 2011–04–25.
- How Lutherans Worship Archived 24 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine at LutheransOnline.com. Retrieved 2011–04–24.
- How do we move to weekly Communion? at elca.org Retrieved 2011-09-18
- "Ordinances". GAMEO. 24 August 2013. Retrieved 11 October 2013.
- Darby, J.N., quoted in Bradshaw, P.F. The new SCM dictionary of liturgy and worship, p. 375
- Muller, G. (1860) A Narrative of some of the Lord's dealings with George Muller, pp. 279–81
- Bradshaw, P.F. The new SCM dictionary of liturgy and worship, p. 375
- Brethren Online FAQs Archived 18 May 2016 at the Portuguese Web Archive
- McGrath, Alister E. Reformation Thought Oxford: Blackwell (2003) p. 189
- Hendry, George S. The Westminster Confession for Today SCM (1960) p. 232
- D. G. Hart and John R. Muether (October 1997). "The Lord's Supper: How Often?". Ordained Servant. 6 (4).
- Abraham, William J.; Watson, David F. (2013). Key United Methodist Beliefs. Abingdon Press. pp. 103–04. ISBN 978-1426756610.
Charles Wesley wrote a marvelous collection of hymns that offer an amazing vision of Christ's mysterious, yet real, presence in the bread and the wine. Here is a stanza from one of them: We need not now go up to Heaven, To bring the long sought Saviour down; Thou art to all already given, Thou dost e’en now Thy banquet crown: To every faithful soul appear, And show Thy real presence here!
- Crowther, Jonathan (1815). A Portraiture of Methodism. p. 224.
The Methodists believe, that the covenant of grace has been administered and renewed in different ages of the world. ... Under the gospel, Christ the substance, prefigured by these shadows, being exhibited, the ordinances in and by which this covenant is dispensed, are the preaching of the word, and the administration of the sacraments of baptism and the Lord's Supper: which ordinances, though fewer in number, and administered with more simplicity, and less external glory, yet hold forth this covenant in greater fulness, evidence, and spiritual efficacy to all nations, both Jews and Gentiles.
- Watson, Richard (1852). An exposition of the gospels of St. Matthew and St. Mark: and some other detached parts of Holy Scripture. George Lane & Levi Scott. p. 282.
This covenant, the blood of Christ, that is, the pouring forth of his blood as a sacrficial victim, at once procured and ratified; so that it stands firm to all truly penitent and contrite spirits who believe in him: and of this great truth, the Lord's Supper was the instituted sign and seal; and he who in faith drinks of the cup, having reference to its signification, that blood of Christ which confirms to true believers the whole covenant of grace, is assured thereby of its faithfulness and permanence, and derives to himself the fulness of its blessings.
- "Alcohol". Methodist Church of Great Britain. Retrieved 10 November 2017.
- "... the use of unfermented grape juice by The United Methodist Church ... expresses pastoral concern for recovering alcoholics, enables the participation of children and youth, and supports the church's witness of abstinence".
- Communion Cups, 1000 from Broadman / Holman Church Supply. Christianbook.com. Accessed 5 July 2009.
- UMC 1992, 29.
- Seventh-day Adventist Church Manual, 17th edition, 2005, pp. 81–86. Published by the secretariat, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists.
- Seventh-day Adventists Believe: An exposition of the fundamental beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. 2nd edition, 2005. Copyright Ministeral Association, General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Chapter 16: The Lord's Supper
- Reasoning From The Scriptures, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1989, p. 265.
- Insight On The Scriptures, Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society, 1988, p. 392.
- Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers - Luke 22 "This do in remembrance of me.—Literally, as My memorial, or, as your memorial of Me." - Retrieved October 18, 2019.
- "Jehovah is a God of Covenants", The Watchtower, February 1, 1998, p. 8, "Jesus instituted the only annual religious observance commanded for Christians—the Memorial of his death."
- What Does the Bible Really Teach?. Watch Tower Society. p. 207.
- "Discerning What We Are – At Memorial Time", The Watchtower, February 15, 1990, p. 16.
- See, e.g., Roberts, B. H. (1938). Comprehensive History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Deseret News Press. OCLC 0842503005.
- "Doctrine and Covenants 20:75". LDS Church. Retrieved 19 June 2009.
- "Handbook 2: Administering the Church, Chapter 20.4.3". Retrieved 30 October 2011.
- "Moroni 4". ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
- "Moroni 5". ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
- "The Restoration of the Sacrament". ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
- "Why Does the Salvation Army Not Baptize or Hold Communion Services?". Waterbeachsalvationarmy.org.uk. 28 February 1987. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- How do Quakers Practice Baptism and Communion?
- Justin Martyr, The First Apology, chapter 66
- Orthodox Church in America, "The Doors"
- "Code of Canon Law, canon 844". Intratext.com. 4 May 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Evangelical Lutheran Archived 7 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved 2013–03–23.
- "ELCA Full Communion Partners". Elca.org. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- "Close communion and membership".
- "Guidelines for Congregational, District, and Synodical Communion Statements" www.lcms.org. Retrieved 2016–12–28.
- In most United Church of Christ local churches, the Communion Table is "open to all Christians who wish to know the presence of Christ and to share in the community of God's people". (Book of Worship). Holy Communion: A Practice of Faith in the United Church of Christ
- The Episcopal Handbook. Church Publishing, Inc. 1 September 2008. ISBN 978-0819223296. Retrieved 25 June 2012.
Pastoral blessings are often available for children or adults who are not communing. Simply cross your arms over your chest if you wish to receive a blessing.
- Community of Christ: Communion Archived 26 February 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- "20. PRIESTHOOD ORDINANCES AND BLESSINGS". ChurchofJesusChrist.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
- Code of Canon Law, canon 916 Archived 28 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, canon 711 Archived 30 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, canon 713 Archived 30 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Code of Canon Law, canon 919 Archived 28 June 2011 at the Wayback Machine
- Preparing to Receive Holy Communion Archived 21 July 2008 at the Wayback Machine
- How to Prepare for the Eucharist Archived 9 May 2013 at the Wayback Machine
- "Preparation for Holy Communion". Stlukeorthodox.com. 4 February 2001. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Mulder CJ, van Wanrooij RL, Bakker SF, Wierdsma N, Bouma G (2013). "Gluten-free diet in gluten-related disorders". Dig. Dis. (Review). 31 (1): 57–62. doi:10.1159/000347180. PMID 23797124.
The only treatment for CD, dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) and gluten ataxia is lifelong adherence to a GFD.
- Hischenhuber C, Crevel R, Jarry B, Mäki M, Moneret-Vautrin DA, Romano A, Troncone R, Ward R (1 March 2006). "Review article: safe amounts of gluten for patients with wheat allergy or coeliac disease". Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 23 (5): 559–75. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2036.2006.02768.x. PMID 16480395.
For both wheat allergy and coeliac disease the dietary avoidance of wheat and other gluten-containing cereals is the only effective treatment.
- Volta U, Caio G, De Giorgio R, Henriksen C, Skodje G, Lundin KE (June 2015). "Non-celiac gluten sensitivity: a work-in-progress entity in the spectrum of wheat-related disorders". Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 29 (3): 477–91. doi:10.1016/j.bpg.2015.04.006. PMID 26060112.
A recently proposed approach to NCGS diagnosis is an objective improvement of gastrointestinal symptoms and extra-intestinal manifestations assessed through a rating scale before and after GFD. Although a standardized symptom rating scale is not yet applied worldwide, a recent study indicated that a decrease of the global symptom score higher than 50% after GFD can be regarded as confirmatory of NCGS (Table 1) . (…) After the confirmation of NCGS diagnosis, according to the previously mentioned work-up, patients are advized to start with a GFD .
- McNamara, Father Edward (14 September 2004). "Gluten-free Hosts". ZENIT International News Agency. Retrieved 22 April 2008.
- The same 24 July 2003 letter of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
- Jax Peter Lowell, The Gluten-Free Bible, p. 279.
- Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1390 Archived 16 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine
- Code of Canon Law, canon 924 §1 Archived 4 December 2010 at the Wayback Machine
- "Sacrament of the Eucharist: Rite of Sanctification of the Chalice". Copticchurch.net. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Compare John Howard Spahr, I Smell the Cup Archived 21 September 2008 at the Wayback Machine, Christian Century, 12 March 1974, pp. 257–59.
- Manangan, Lilia P.; Sehulster, Lynne M.; Chiarello, Linda; Simonds, Dawn N.; Jarvis, William R. (October 1998). "Risk of Infectious Disease Transmission from a Common Communion Cup". American Journal of Infection Control. 26 (5): 538–39. doi:10.1016/s0196-6553(98)70029-x. Archived from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 2 December 2013.
- Pellerin, J.; Edmond, M. B. (2013). "Infections associated with religious rituals". International Journal of Infectious Diseases. 17 (11): e945–48. doi:10.1016/j.ijid.2013.05.001. PMID 23791225.
- "Archbishops advise against sharing chalice during swine flu pandemic". Christiantoday.com. 27 July 2009. Retrieved 16 May 2019.
- Reddy, Sumathi (7 January 2011). "Hands Off After Wafer Scare". Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 12 October 2012.
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- Bouyer, Louis. Eucharist: Theology and Spirituality of the Eucharistic Prayer, trans. by Charles Underhill Quinn. Notre Dame, Ind.: University of Notre Dame Press, 1968. N.B.: Despite what the subtitle may suggest, the book discusses the Christian Eucharist in further aspects than alone the "Canon of the Mass". ISBN 0268004986
- Chemnitz, Martin. The Lord's Supper. J. A. O. Preus, trans. St. Louis: Concordia, 1979. ISBN 057003275X
- Church, Catholic. "The Canons and Decrees of the Council of Trent" Translated by Rev. H.J. Schroeder, O.P., published by Tan Books and Publishers, Inc., Rockford, IL
- Dix, Dom Gregory. The Shape of the Liturgy. London: Continuum International, 2005. ISBN 0826479421
- Cabrera de Armida, Concepcion. I Am: Eucharistic Meditations on the Gospel, Alba House Publishing 2001 ISBN 0818908904
- Elert, Werner. Eucharist and Church Fellowship in the First Four Centuries. N. E. Nagel, trans. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1966. ISBN 0570042704
- Felton, Gayle. This Holy Mystery. Nashville: Discipleship Resources, 2005. ISBN 088177457X
- Father Gabriel. Divine Intimacy. London, UK: Baronius Press Ltd., 2013 reprint ed. ISBN 978-1905574438
- Grime, J. H. Close Communion and Baptists
- Hahn, Scott. The Lamb's Supper: Mass as Heaven on Earth. Darton, Longman, Todd. 1999. ISBN 0232525005
- Henke, Frederick Goodrich A Study in the Psychology of Ritualism. University of Chicago Press, 1910
- Jurgens, William A. The Faith of the Early Fathers. Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 1970. ISBN 0814604323
- Kolb, Robert and Timothy J. Wengert, eds. The Book of Concord: The Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church. Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2000. (ISBN 0800627407)
- Lefebvre, Gaspar. The Saint Andrew Daily Missal. Reprint. Great Falls, MT: St. Bonaventure Publications, Inc., 1999
- Löhr, Hermut, ed., Abendmahl (Themen der Theologie 3), Tübingen: UTB / Mohr Siebeck 2012. ISBN 978-3825234997
- Macy, Gary. The Banquet's Wisdom: A Short History of the Theologies of the Lord's Supper. (2005, ISBN 1878009508)
- Magni, JA The Ethnological Background of the Eucharist. Clark University. American Journal of Religious Psychology and Education, IV (No. 1–2), March, 1910.
- McBride, Alfred, O. Praem. Celebrating the Mass. Our Sunday Visitor, 1999.
- Neal, Gregory. Grace Upon Grace: Sacramental Theology and the Christian Life. 2014. ISBN 1490860061
- Nevin, John Williamson. The Mystical Presence: A Vindication of the Reformed or Calvinistic Doctrine of the Holy Eucharist. 1846; Wipf & Stock reprint, 2000. ISBN 1579103480.
- Oden, Thomas C. Corrective Love: The Power of Communion Discipline. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1995. ISBN 0570048036
- Piolanti, Antonio, ed. Eucharistia: il mistero dell'altare nel pensiero e nella vita della Chiesa. Roma: Desclée, 1957.
- Rasperger (Raspergero), Christopher (Christophorus, Christoph, Christophoro, Christophe) Two hundred interpretations of the words: This is my Body, Ingolstadt, 1577 Latin text. (Latin title: Ducentae paucorum istorum et quidem clarissimorum Christi verborum: Hoc est Corpus meum; interpretationes; German title: Zweihundert Auslegungen der Worte das ist mein Leib.)
- Sasse, Hermann. This Is My Body: Luther's Contention for the Real Presence in the Sacrament of the Altar. Eugene, OR: Wipf & Stock, 2001. ISBN 1579107664
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- Scotland, N. A. D. Eucharistic Consecration in the First Four Centuries and Its Implications for Liturgical Reform, in series, Latimer Studies, 31. Oxford, Eng.: Latimer House, 1989. ISBN 094630730X
- Stoffer, Dale R. The Lord's Supper: Believers Church Perspectives
- Stookey, L.H. Eucharist: Christ's Feast with the Church. Nashville: Abingdon, 1993. ISBN 0687120179
- Tissot, Very Rev. J. The Interior Life. 1916, pp. 347–49.
- Wright, N. T. The Meal Jesus Gave Us
- Yarnold, G.D. The Bread Which We Break. London: Oxford University Press, 1960. 119 p.