Monday, 17 February 2014

The reception of communion in the Syriac Tradition

In the Syriac Tradition the mysteries of the Eucharist, namely, the body and blood of Christ is the summit of our worship. We become in communion with our Lord in a very spiritual and physical way.

In the Syriac Tradition, unlike that of the Latin Tradition, the main celebrant (if of an equal of higher rank than the communicant) always communes the communicant. That is, the communicant never communes himself. The theology of this is simply because it is a sacrifice being given by the celebrant. In addition to this we are simply mimicking Our Lord Jesus who did the same to his apostles.

Unfortunately though, in the Syriac Churches in communion with Rome, there is a tendency where any cleric above that of a deacon is able to commune themselves. See a picture below of Patriarch Younan allowing a deacon to commune himself.

Patriarch Younan allowing a deacon to commune himself
The correct practice should be the Patriarch giving communion to the deacon. This practice is currently being restored in the Chaldean Church (however, it seems that the restoration is not happening quick enough).

Patriarch Ignatius Zaka I Iwas communing a Bishop (it looks like Bishop George Saliba of Mount Lebanon)

Please pray for the restoration of our traditions.

Through the Birth-Giver of God Maryam and Mor Ephrem God Bless you all


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