POLL: Does Anglicanism consider the Eucharistic food itself to really be or have Christ's body?

Discussion in 'Sacraments, Sacred Rites, and Holy Orders' started by rakovsky, Mar 24, 2016.

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Do you affirm the Articles of Religion on the issue of the real presence in Eucharist bread?

Poll closed Dec 18, 2018.
  1. I'm Anglican and my answer is "Yes."

    85.7%
  2. I'm Anglican and my answer is "No, I have a disagreement with it."

    14.3%
  3. I'm Anglican and my answer is "Other"

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    Receptionists believe in a real presence, as they use the term , ie that Christ's body in heaven is "really present" there to believers who are on earth.

    The Oxford movement and the EOs on the other hand take it to mean that Jesus has a real, actual, objective presence directly on earth in the bread itself, so that This is my body becomes an actually, objectively, directly correct statement, rather than a metaphorical one.
     
  2. Christina

    Christina Active Member

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    Anglicanism is not one Church - there are those Anglican Churches that are in communion with Canterbury - which could be a group that the EO could seek to unite with (although there are a number of barriers, including female ordination and the fact that, within this communion there are Anglo Catholics believing in the real presence and evangelicals who believe that the bread and wine are symbols only) and there are many other Churches that consider themselves Anglican in belief and worship, that are not in communion with Canterbury, some of which are in communion with each other and some are not. I think you just have to accept that within Anglicanism there are different understandings of the Real Presence and different understanding of whether and/or how the unworthy eat/partake. As others have said, it is a Holy Mystery. Anglicanism is not just about the Articles - the Apostles Creed and the Nicene Creed are the foundations of the Anglican faith.
     
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  3. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    Yes, I accept that what you have described matches the collective reality of Anglican theologians' opinions on this question.
    That is, collectively Anglicans typically accept either an objective presence in the bread or accept Receptionism, while rejecting Transubstantiation per the Articles.

    As I said, ideally I would like our Churches to reunite, and this is a key issue. It may be the most crucial one.

    I understand you to be suggesting that one common view among Anglicans is that Jesus' body is objectively present in the physical bread, such that you can affirm that in his hands Jesus actually held his body during the Words of Institution, as Augustine said in his commentary on the Psalms. This view I believe is also a common view among EO theologians.
     
  4. alphaomega

    alphaomega Active Member

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    I agree completely. EO theology calls Holy Communion a mystery. Christ said it is His Body and Blood, we are to accept it. It is God's gift to us, more than any human mind can ever fully understand.
    Btw: Welcome to Anglican Forum
     
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  5. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    I keep watching this thread. Much of the age in which was discussed ad nauseum was of course the time of the reformation. I believe much of what the debate amount to has more to do with the way we do our think rather than what we actually think. If anyone here would challenge the words of Jesus - then the Thirty Nine is the least of their problems.

    The Eastern Churches by and large accept that God acts in the sacrament and are especially connected to the epiclesis (the invocation of the Holy Spirit) as a result. In the Western Churches we have tended to give greater emphasis to the importance of the Words of Institution. In some sense we have worried about the words we say, rather than the activity of God. In reality neither of us adopts this stance explicitly to the exclusion of the other.

    There is more to unite us than keep us apart.
     
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  6. Hungarus

    Hungarus New Member

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    Another interpretation:

    http://anglicaneucharistictheology....5/12_John_Cosin1594-1672Bishop_of_Durham.html
     
  7. Hungarus

    Hungarus New Member

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    Thank you very much. :)
     
  8. Hungarus

    Hungarus New Member

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    A very interesting article:

    http://anglicancontinuum.blogspot.hu/2009/09/fine-paper-on-eucharistic-theology.html

     
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  9. CWJ

    CWJ Active Member

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  10. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    I agree with what you said, Philip, except the bold part:
    I am not sure what you mean with "by and large". I don't know of any that teach the memorialist view.
     
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  11. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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  12. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    What does "less objectively" mean? Either Christ's body itself is directly acruelly in the bread or it is not, according to the theological debates on the question.
    Cranmer's position was that it was not there in the bread. What other title is used for Cranmer's position than Receptionism or Virtualism?
     
  13. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    I wonder why the writer of that essay removed the underlined words that Bp. Cheyney, who believed the body was eaten also with the mouth in a physical manner, had objected to:

    “The Body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten, in the Supper only after a heavenly and spiritual manner.”

    I am not sure that "The influence of Receptionism seems to be a thing of the past in Anglicanism as there are no well known theologians or schools of thought within the Church that teach it today".
    First, there is a major movement of Reformed, evangelical, or low church Anglicans who accept Receptionism.

    Anglican74 seemed to defend Receptionism yesterday when he asserted "All Receptionists believe in the real presence".
     
  14. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    The author says that he opposes Receptionism.

    The author also writes:
    However, in contrast to the words in bold above, later in the essay, the author quotes the Lutheran Book of Concord as explicitly teaching that Christ's body is "in", under, and with the forms of bread and wine.

    There are other major issues with that essay. He claims that Calvin taught the real presence and rejected receptionism, but by claiming this the author basically has to use the Reformed definition of Receptionism, and he never shows that Calvin taught there to be a real, objective presence in the bread itself.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
  15. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    Here I will give my personal opinion or guess so you can tell where I am coming from. It's more likely that when Jesus said 'This is my body' that he was talking about the bread in the same way that Paul talked about the community of believers being Jesus' body. In Peter and Paul's scheme, believers' bodies are "vessels" and Christ's spirit enters them. As a result, believers directly themselves have Jesus' own spirit itself and so the Christians collectively are called Jesus' body. In the NT and OT, spirits can enter into physical objects. It's the same thing with the Eucharist bread, I think. That is, the bread itself has Jesus' spirit in it, and thus the bread is a vessel or body of Christ, ie the actual bread is actually Christ's body, like the Church is. And since Christs heavenly body is transformed, His heavenly "spirit body" can enter into the bread. This scheme is like the teaching of the Oxford movement on the real presence.

    Less likely for me is Transubstantiation because the food looks like bread, but this teaching has some factors in its favor. Jesus' teaching in John on eating and masticating/chewing (Jesus uses both words in Greek) his flesh is preceded by the stories of Jesus changing the substance of water into wine and of multiplying physical pieces of bread. These actions may prefigured the Eucharist and suggest that there is a change in substance performed by Jesus once more just as he did two physical miracles with physical bread and wine before.

    I am even more skeptical of the theory some have suggested that Jesus removes his presence from the physical pieces of bread that the unworthy eat, because in 1 Cor 11, Paul warns that unworthy eating leads to physical sickness. That claim by Paul makes more sense if the bread itself has some real special properties, like having a real presence in them.

    These are my own opinions or impressions.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
  16. CWJ

    CWJ Active Member

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    The article mentions that Calvin said:
    “We must confess, then, that if the representation which God gave us in the Supper is true, the internal substance of the sacrament is conjoined with the visible signs; and as the bread is distributed to us by the hand, so the body of Christ is communicated to us in order that we may be partakers of it."
    Like the author of the article, I think it's important to understand that Calvin's high view of the Sacraments is not held to by many modern "Calvinists".
    Even so...Calvin was not an Anglican.
     
  17. rakovsky

    rakovsky Active Member

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    CWJ,
    Calvin even in the INSTITUTES OF RELIGION had a higher view of the ritual that Zwingli and modern Evangelicals. As a Receptionist or Virtualist, Calvin thought that believers spirits rose to heaven where Jesus' body remained and thus commune with it there during the ritual. In contrast to Calvins view, the Memorialist view of the Evangelicals is that nothing more happens than anytime else that believers are gathered. He says that the bread is distributed to us by the hand, "SO" the body is communicated to us, but this is what he already was saying in the Institutes. He never wrote that Christ's body was directly " in" the bread itself or that the body is distributed by hand. Instead, in the Institutes, he wrote that he rejected anything that "affixes" Christ's body to bread.

    A careful reading of the quote by Calvin above does not show a clear assertion that Jesus' body is actually in the bread itself.
    It's true he says:
    " the internal substance of the sacrament is conjoined with the visible signs", but what is the internal substance, and what does it mean to say conjoined with?
    In that tract the quote comes from he may have said that the internal substance of the ritual is the "virtue" of the Holy spirit.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
  18. Christina

    Christina Active Member

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    In my experience, some Anglo Catholics go against the Articles and do believe in Transubstantiation!

    I would ask what do you mean by you want our Churches to unite? There is not one Anglican Church to unite with. There are autonomous Anglican Churches within the Anglican Communion (TEC in USA, Cof E in the UK etc) - together representing a unity perhaps similar to that of the autonomous EO Churches. Then there are a variety of other continuing Anglican Churches, some united with each other and others not.
     
  19. CWJ

    CWJ Active Member

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    Yeah Zwinglian views of the Eucharist (and Baptism as well) are pretty much what today's independent Evangelical churches believe. And unfortunately many Presbyterians as well (at least in the Reformed churches I attended). I was surprised to read that it is also predominant in Methodism as well...I had thought that they, officially at least, believed the same as Anglicans on the Eucharist. (Wesley was an Anglican after all).

    But anyway none of the above are Anglican churches (although Methodists used to be)...and far be it from me to defend Calvin haha :) I appreciate some of his insights but I am no Calvinist :)

    Here is what I believe, and the Anglican church I attend affirms...Christ is really and truly present in the Sacrament. The bread I am given and I receive is His body, the Wine I am given and I receive is His blood. I most assuredly hope that all Anglicans believe the same.
     
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  20. Christina

    Christina Active Member

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    I would like to think all Anglicans believe the same, but I fear this may not be the case. In the UK at least I believe there may be evangelical Anglican Churches in which the that bread and the wine are seen as symbols rather than the real body and blood of Christ. They believe that Christ is present with them in a personal way, but not necessarily present in the bread and the wine. That was my experience in the low Anglican Church I attended in the 1980's.
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2016
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