Report by General Relator of Synod
which is the offering of one's whole life, in which the Christian is progressively molded through the full, acknowledged and active participation in the Eucharistic celebration .
The invitation to eat His Body and to drink His Blood (communion) constitutes the sure way to salvation (cf. Jn 6:47-58). Therefore, the memorial in continuity with the Jewish Passover (cf. Deut 16:1 et seg.), possesses the physical concreteness of the assumption of the Eucharistic species, safeguarded from any intellectual limitation of faith. The fruit of this action is the sacramental communion with Christ (cf. Cor. 10:16), made possible by the love with which the Spirit glorifies the flesh of the Risen. The same Spirit that moves Christ to the total giving of Himself moves His disciples to welcome Him in obedience to faith, moves them to remain in Him and to thus receive life as He receives it from the Father (cf. Jn 14:26; 16:13).
This sacrament is given for the communion of men in Christ. For Paul, the koinonia is the fruit of the Eucharist through which Christians, incorporated in Christ, become one body and participate of one Spirit (cf. Cor. 10:16-17). They are the new people of God who, guided by the successors of the apostles cum et sub the successor of Peter, go through history with the sure hope that the Risen Jesus constitutes the beginning of their personal resurrection (cf. Cor. 15:17-20).
Outside of this Eucharistic and sacramental communion the Church is not fully constituted: The Eucharist makes the Church. The new people of God (ecclesial body) is configured by the Eucharistic Body of Christ which makes sacramentally present the Body of Jesus born of the Most Holy Virgin Mary . The ecclesial body thus becomes truly molded like the Body of Christ present in time and in history, due to the bond that ties it to the Eucharistic Body of Christ. In the ritual celebration of the Eucharist the Church realizes the form itself of its identity as people gathered by the love of God.
1. A first confirmation: the Bishop, liturgist par excellence
This becomes even clearer if one looks at the venerable tradition, which has always recognized the Bishop as the liturgist par excellence and the administrator of the sacraments . The Bishop does not preside the Eucharist, due to a merely juridical reason, because he is the head" of the local church, but in remaining faithful to the commandment of the Lord who entrusted the memorial of his Paschal event to Peter and the apostles. He made them the faithful dispensers of His mysteries and, due to this, the first ones responsible for evangelical announcement to the whole world. For this reason the diocesan Bishop is the guide, the promoter and the custodian of all liturgical life. In the celebrations done under his presidency, especially the Eucharist, celebrated with the participation of the priest, the deacons and the people, the mystery of the Church is manifested". This is especially evident in the ordained Eucharistic concelebration which adequately manifests the unity of the priesthood". Communion with the Bishop is the condition for legitimizing the Eucharistic celebration in favor of the people of God. Once more the fruitfulness of the ratio sacramentalis of revelation comes to light: the ecclesial subject (personal or community) does not participate fully in redemption if he does not embrace the sacramental modalities that constitute the form that Jesus chose to remain within human events.
2. A second confirmation: the nature of the Christian temple
A second confirmation of how the Eucharistic celebration concretely makes the Church is the radical differences between the Christian temple, the pagan temple and the Judaic one. While the pagan temple and the Judaic one were characterized by the presence of the divinity and because of this presence were considered sacred and sacralized, the place" of Christian worship, in a certain sense, consists in the action itself of the celebration of the mystery. The word ecclesia indicates the action of Christian uniting. Only as a consequence it came to indicate the place itself, for this reunion, where divine presence is realized.
Also, while in the pagan temple and, in a certain sense, even the Judaic temple, the encounter of the faithful is in some way casual, in the place for Christian worship this is the constitutive element of the temple itself. Each and every faithful is the living stone of the temple (cf. 1Pt 2:5). The Spirit is the cement that unifies them (cf. Eph 2:22). This explains the care with which the Church unceasingly offers indications about the architecture and sacred art . In fact, the temples should be modeled upon the liturgical assembly in actu celebrationis, as epiphany" of the communio hierarchica that is the Church.
3. A third confirmation: Intercommunion?
A rather ...
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