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Transubstantiation ("Latin: transsubstantiatio; "Greek: μετουσίωσις "metousiosis) is, according to the teachings of the "Roman Catholic Church, the change of "substance or "essence by which the bread and wine offered in the sacrifice of the "sacrament of the "Eucharist during the Mass, become, in "reality, the body and blood of "Jesus Christ.
The Roman Catholic Church teaches that in the Eucharistic offering bread and wine are changed into the body and blood of Christ. The reaffirmation of this doctrine was expressed, using the word "transubstantiate", by the "Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215. It was later challenged by various 14th century reformers—"John Wycliffe in particular.
The manner in which the change occurs, the Roman Catholic Church teaches, is a mystery: "The signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ.":1333 The precise terminology to be used to refer to the nature of the Eucharist, and its theological implications, has a contentious history especially in the "Protestant Reformation.
In the "Greek Orthodox Church, the doctrine has been discussed under the term of "metousiosis, coined as a direct loan-translation of transsubstantiatio in the 17th century. In "Eastern Orthodoxy in general, the "Sacred Mystery (Sacrament) of the Eucharist is more commonly discussed using alternative terms such as "trans-elementation" (μεταστοιχείωσις, metastoicheiosis), "re-ordination" (μεταρρύθμισις, metarrhythmisis), or simply "change" (μεταβολή, metabole).
The belief that the bread and wine that form the matter of the Eucharist become the body and blood of Christ appears to have been widespread from an early date, with early Christian writers referring to them as his body and the blood. They speak of them as the same flesh and blood which suffered and died on the cross.
The short document known as the Teaching of the Apostles or "Didache, which may be the earliest Christian document outside of the "New Testament to speak of the Eucharist, says, "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'."
A letter by Saint "Ignatius of Antioch to the Romans, written in about AD 106 says: "I desire the bread of God, the heavenly bread, the bread of life, which is the flesh of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who became afterwards of the seed of David and Abraham; and I desire the drink of God, namely His blood, which is incorruptible love and eternal life."
Writing to the Christians of Smyrna in the same year, he warned them to "stand aloof from such heretics", because, among other reasons, "they abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again."
In about 150, "Justin Martyr, referring to the Eucharist, wrote: "Not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Savior, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh."
Justin Martyr wrote, in the Dialogue with Trypho, ch 70: "Now it is evident, that in this prophecy [allusion is made] to the bread which our Christ gave us to eat, in remembrance of His being made flesh for the sake of His believers, for whom also He suffered; and to the cup which He gave us to drink, in remembrance of His own blood, with giving of thanks."
In about 200 AD, Tertullian wrote: "Having taken the bread and given it to His disciples, He made it His own body, by saying, This is my body, that is, the figure of my body. A figure, however, there could not have been, unless there were first a veritable body. An empty thing, or phantom, is incapable of a figure. If, however, (as Marcion might say) He pretended the bread was His body, because He lacked the truth of bodily substance, it follows that He must have given bread for us."
The "Apostolic Constitutions (compiled c. 380) says: "Let the bishop give the oblation, saying, The body of Christ; and let him that receiveth say, Amen. And let the deacon take the cup; and when he gives it, say, The blood of Christ, the cup of life; and let him that drinketh say, Amen."
Saint "Ambrose of Milan (d. 397) wrote:
Other fourth-century Christian writers say that in the Eucharist there occurs a "change", "transelementation", "transformation", "transposing", "alteration" of the bread into the body of Christ.
In AD 400, "Augustine quotes Cyprian (AD 200): "For as Christ says 'I am the true vine,' it follows that the blood of Christ is wine, not water; and the cup cannot appear to contain His blood by which we are redeemed and quickened, if the wine be absent; for by the wine is the blood of Christ typified, ..."
The doctrine of transubstantiation is the result of a theological dispute started in the 11th century, when "Berengar of Tours denied that any material change in the elements was needed to explain the Eucharistic Presence, thereby provoking a considerable stir. Berengar's position was never diametrically opposed to that of his critics, and he was probably never excommunicated, but the controversies that he aroused (see "Stercoranism) forced people to clarify the doctrine of the Eucharist. The earliest known use of the term "transubstantiation" to describe the change from bread and wine to body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist was by "Hildebert de Lavardin, Archbishop of Tours, in the 11th century. By the end of the 12th century the term was in widespread use.
The "Fourth Council of the Lateran in 1215 spoke of the bread and wine as "transubstantiated" into the body and blood of Christ: "His body and blood are truly contained in the sacrament of the altar under the forms of bread and wine, the bread and wine having been transubstantiated, by God's power, into his body and blood". It was only later in the 13th century that Aristotelian metaphysics was accepted and a philosophical elaboration in line with that metaphysics was developed, which found classic formulation in the teaching of "Thomas Aquinas."
During the "Protestant Reformation, the doctrine of transubstantiation was heavily criticised as an "Aristotelian ""pseudophilosophy" imported into Christian teaching and jettisoned in favor of "Martin Luther's doctrine of "sacramental union, or in favor, per "Huldrych Zwingli, of the Eucharist as memorial.
In the "Protestant Reformation, the doctrine of transubstantiation became a matter of much controversy. "Martin Luther held that "It is not the doctrine of transubstantiation which is to be believed, but simply that Christ really is present at the Eucharist". In his ""On the Babylonian Captivity of the Church" (published on 6 October 1520) Luther wrote:
In his 1528 "Confession Concerning Christ's Supper he wrote:
What Luther thus called a ""sacramental union" is often erroneously called "consubstantiation by non-Lutherans. In "On the Babylonian Captivity", Luther upheld belief in the Real Presence of Jesus and, in his 1523 treatise "The Adoration of the Sacrament, defended adoration of the body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist.
Huldrych Zwingli taught that the sacrament is purely symbolic and memorial in character, arguing that this was the meaning of Jesus' instruction: "Do this in remembrance of me".
King "Henry VIII of England, though breaking with the Pope, kept many essentials of Catholic doctrine, including Transubstantiation. This was enshrined in the "Six Articles of 1539, and the death penalty specifically prescribed for any who denied Transubstantiation.
This was changed under "Elizabeth I. In the "39 articles of 1563, the Church of England declared: "Transubstantiation (or the change of the substance of Bread and Wine) in the Supper of the Lord, cannot be proved by holy Writ; but is repugnant to the plain words of Scripture, overthroweth the nature of a Sacrament, and hath given occasion to many superstitions"; and made "Mass illegal.
For a century and half - 1672 to 1828 - Transubstantiation had an important role, in a negative way, in British political and social life. Under the "Test Act, the holding of any public office was made conditional upon explicitly adjuring Transubstantiation. Any aspirant to public office had to repeat the formula set out by the law: I, N, do declare that I do believe that there is not any transubstantiation in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper, or in the elements of the "bread and wine, at or after the "consecration thereof by any person whatsoever.
In 1551, the "Council of Trent confirmed the doctrine of transubstantiation as Catholic dogma, stating 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." In its 13th session ending 11 October 1551, the Council defined transubstantiation as "that wonderful and singular conversion of the whole substance of the bread into the Body, and of the whole substance of the wine into the Blood – the "species only of the bread and wine remaining – which conversion indeed the Catholic Church most aptly calls Transubstantiation". This council officially approved use of the term "transubstantiation" to express the Catholic Church's teaching on the subject of the conversion of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist, with the aim of safeguarding Christ's presence as a literal truth, while emphasizing the fact that there is no change in the empirical appearances of the bread and wine. It did not however impose the Aristotelian theory of substance and accidents: it spoke only of the "species (the appearances), not the philosophical term "accidents", and the word "substance" was in ecclesiastical use for many centuries before Aristotelian philosophy was adopted in the West, as shown for instance by its use in the "Nicene Creed which speaks of Christ having the same "οὐσία" (Greek) or "substantia" (Latin) as the "Father.
While the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation in relation to the Eucharist can be viewed in terms of the "Aristotelian distinction between "substance and accident, Catholic theologians generally hold that, "in referring to the Eucharist, the Church does not use the terms substance and accident in their philosophical contexts but in the common and ordinary sense in which they were first used many centuries ago. The dogma of transubstantiation does not embrace any philosophical theory in particular." This ambiguity is recognized also by a Lutheran theologian such as "Jaroslav Pelikan, who, while himself interpreting the terms as Aristotelian, states that "the application of the term 'substance' to the discussion of the Eucharistic presence antedates the rediscovery of Aristotle. [...] Even 'transubstantiation' was used during the twelfth century in a nontechnical sense. Such evidence lends credence to the argument that the doctrine of transubstantiation, as codified by the decrees of the Fourth Lateran and Tridentine councils, did not canonize Aristotelian philosophy as indispensable to Christian doctrine. But whether it did so or not in principle, it has certainly done so in effect".
The view that the distinction is independent of any philosophical theory has been expressed as follows: "The distinction between substance and accidents is real, not just imaginary. In the case of the person, the distinction between the person and his or her accidental features is after all real. Therefore, even though the notion of substance and accidents originated from Aristotelian philosophy, the distinction between substance and accidents is also independent of philosophical and scientific development." "Substance" here means what something is in itself: A hat's shape is not the hat itself, nor is its colour, size, softness to the touch, nor anything else about it perceptible to the senses. The hat itself (the "substance") has the shape, the color, the size, the softness and the other appearances, but is distinct from them. While the appearances are perceptible to the senses, the substance is not.
The philosophical term "accidents" does not appear in the teaching of the Council of Trent on transubstantiation, which is repeated in the Vatican-approved "Catechism of the Catholic Church (at the only point in which the latter uses the word "transubstantiation"). For what the Council distinguishes from the "substance" of the bread and wine it uses the term species:
The Catechism of the Catholic Church cites the Council of Trent also in regard to the mode of the "real presence of Christ in the Eucharist:
The Catholic Church holds that the same change of the substance of the bread and of the wine at the Last Supper continues to occur at the "consecration of the Eucharist:1377 when the "words are spoken "in persona Christi "This is my body ... this is my blood." In Orthodox confessions, the change is said to start during the "Dominical or Lord's Words or Institution Narrative and be completed during the "Epiklesis.
Teaching that Christ is risen from the dead and is alive, the Catholic Church holds that when the bread is changed into his body, not only his body is present, but Christ as a whole is present (i.e. body and blood, soul and divinity.) The same holds for the wine changed into his blood. This teaching goes beyond the doctrine of transubstantiation, which directly concerns only the change of the substance of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ.
In accordance with the dogmatic teaching that Christ is really, truly and substantially present under the remaining appearances of bread and wine, and continues to be present as long as those appearances remain, the Catholic Church preserves the consecrated elements, generally in a "church tabernacle, for administering Holy Communion to the sick and dying, and also for the secondary, but still highly prized, purpose of "adoring Christ present in the Eucharist.
The Roman Catholic Church declares that the doctrine of transubstantiation is concerned with what is changed, and not how the change occurs; it teaches that the appearances (the "species") that remain are real, not an illusion, and that Christ is "really, truly, and substantially present" in the Eucharist.:1374 To touch the smallest particle of the "host or the smallest droplet from the "chalice is to touch Jesus Christ himself, as when one person touches another on the back of the hand with only a fingertip and in so doing touches not merely a few skin cells but touches the whole person: "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."
In the arguments which characterised the relationship between Roman Catholicism and Protestantism in the 16th century, the "Council of Trent declared subject to the ecclesiastical penalty of "anathema anyone who:
As already stated, the Roman Catholic Church "asserts that the "species" that remain are real. In the sacrament these are the "signs of the reality that they "efficaciously signify, not "symbols. And by definition "sacraments are "efficacious signs of "grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Catholic Church, by which divine life is dispensed to us."
In The Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist: The Eucharist and Its Effects (2000-2012), James H. Dobbins, citing the work This Tremendous Lover (1989), by Dom Eugene Boylan, expresses the paradox of Holy Communion:
According to Catholic teaching, the whole of Christ, body and blood, soul and divinity, is in the sacrament, under each of the appearances of bread and wine and in each part of the appearances of bread and wine (since the substance of bread or wine is in each part of ordinary bread or wine, and the substance of Christ is in each part of the consecrated and transubstantiated elements of the "host and the "cup of the sacrament), but he is not in the sacrament as in a place and is not moved when the sacrament is moved. He is perceptible neither by the sense nor by the imagination, but only by the "intellectual eye.
St. Thomas Aquinas gave poetic expression to this perception in the devotional hymn "Adoro te devote:
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From the period of the Dominican-Orthodox controversies witnessed by the Fourteenth Century theologian "Nicholas Kabasilas until the "Council of Florence and the "libellus (booklet)" of "Mark of Ephesus, the Orthodox Church took the position of "a double moment of consecration" at the words "This is my body/blood" and the "epiclesis (i.e. the part of the "Anaphora (Eucharistic Prayer) by which the "priest invokes the "Holy Spirit (or the power of His blessing) upon the Eucharistic bread and wine.
"John Torquemada opposed the Orthodox position at the Council of Florence - despite this Orthodox position being a normative interpretation of the De sacraments and De mysteries of "St. Ambrose. This was all the more ironic since Torquemada cited "Paschasius Radbertus (who himself had claimed to quote "Augustine) in his Sermo alter in the Acta Latina, in order to refute the Bynatine Emperor "John VIII Palaiologos (who was relying on Mark of Ephesus' "libellus").
The end result was that, though Western theologians from "Radbertus until "St. Bonaventure of Bagnoregio had held for the consecratory potential of the epiclesis, Torquemada represented the "Dominican position as if it was universal and non-controversial among the "Latins. In fact, Torquemada's overconfidence was the result of having studied the works of "Pope Benedict XII in his debates against Mark of Ephesus at "Ferrara in 1437.
In these debates, Benedict had condemned an alleged "Armenian theory (never verified among any of the dozen or so Armenian commentaries from the period) that denied all consecratory value to the words of institution and confined the consecration ONLY to the epiclesis (which was not the Byzantine position). Lastly, the Armenians were alleged to hold that the eucharistic change was not substantial and only imperfect and typological, and therefore not transubstantiation.
The arguments, that Benedict XII's letter to the missionaries (c. 1340) addressed, relied on "Aquinas' premises - which was no surprise given Benedict and "Pope Clement VI "Thomist preferences. However, the position which he attributed to the Orthodox was confused for the actual Byzantine position expressed from "Kabasilas to the Council of Florence. This has led to a gross misunderstanding, still evident also among modern and contemporary scholars when attempting to speak of "Theological differences between the Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church.
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As the Disputation of the Holy Sacrament took place in the Western Church after the "Great Schism, the Eastern Churches remained largely unaffected by it. The debate on the nature of "transubstantiation" in Greek Orthodoxy begins in the 17th century, with "Cyril Lucaris, whose The Eastern Confession of the Orthodox Faith was published in Latin in 1629. The Greek term "metousiosis (μετουσίωσις) is first used as the translation of Latin transubstantiatio in the Greek edition of the work, published in 1633.
The "Eastern Catholic, "Oriental Orthodox and "Eastern Orthodox Churches, along with the "Assyrian Church of the East, agree that in a valid "Divine Liturgy bread and wine truly and actually become the body and blood of Christ. In Orthodox confessions, the change is said to start during the "Liturgy of Preparation and be completed during the "Epiklesis. However, there are official church documents that speak of a "change" (in "Greek μεταβολή) or ""metousiosis" (μετουσίωσις) of the bread and wine. "Μετ-ουσί-ωσις" (met-ousi-osis) is the Greek word used to represent the Latin word "trans-substanti-atio", as Greek "μετα-μόρφ-ωσις" (meta-morph-osis) corresponds to Latin "trans-figur-atio". Examples of official documents of the Eastern Orthodox Church that use the term "μετουσίωσις" or "transubstantiation" are the Longer Catechism of The Orthodox, Catholic, Eastern Church (question 340) and the declaration by the Eastern Orthodox "Synod of Jerusalem of 1672:
It should be noted, that the way in which the bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ has never been dogmatically defined by the Eastern Orthodox Churches. However, St Theodore the Studite writes in his treatise On the Holy Icons: "for we confess that the faithful receive the very body and blood of Christ, according to the voice of God himself." This was a refutation of the iconoclasts, who insisted that the eucharist was the only true icon of Christ. Thus, it can be argued that by being part of the dogmatic "horos" against the iconoclast heresy, the teaching on the "real presence" of Christ in the eucharist is indeed a dogma of the Eastern Orthodox Church.
Official writings of the churches of the "Anglican Communion have consistently affirmed Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, a term that includes a belief in the corporeal presence, the "sacramental union, as well as several other "eucharistic theologies.
"Elizabeth I, as part of the "Elizabethan Religious Settlement, gave royal assent to the "Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion, which sought to distinguish Anglican from Roman Church doctrine. The Articles declared that "Transubstantiation (or the change of the substance of Bread and Wine) in the Supper of the Lord, cannot be proved by holy Writ; but is repugnant to the plain words of Scripture, overthroweth the nature of a Sacrament, and hath given occasion to many superstitions." The Elizabethan Settlement accepted the Real Presence of Christ in the Sacrament, but refused to define it, preferring to leave it a mystery. Indeed, for many years it was illegal in Britain to hold public office whilst believing in transubstantiation, as under the "Test Act of 1673. Archbishop "John Tillotson decried the "real barbarousness of this Sacrament and Rite of our Religion", considering it a great "impiety to believe that people who attend "Holy Communion "verily eat and drink the natural flesh and blood of Christ. And what can any man do more unworthily towards a Friend? How can he possibly use him more barbarously, than to feast upon his living flesh and blood?" (Discourse against Transubstantiation, London 1684, 35). In the "Church of England today, clergy are required to assent that the "39 Articles have borne witness to the Christian faith.
Anglicans generally consider no teaching binding that, according to the Articles, "cannot be found in Holy Scripture or proved thereby", and are not unanimous in the interpretation of such passages as John, Chapter 6, and 1 Corinthians 11, although all Anglicans affirm a view of the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist: some Anglicans (especially "Anglo-Catholics and some other "High Church Anglicans) hold to a belief in the corporeal presence while "Evangelical Anglicans hold to a belief in the pneumatic presence. As with all Anglicans, Anglo-Catholics and other High Church Anglicans historically held belief in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist but were "hostile to the doctrine of transubstantiation".
However, in the first half of the twentieth century, the Catholic Propaganda Society upheld both Article XXVIII and the doctrine of transubstantiation, stating that the 39 Articles specifically condemn a pre-Council of Trent "interpretation which was included by some under the term Transubstantiation" in which "the bread and wine were only left as a delusion of the senses after consecration"; it stated that "this Council propounded its definition after the Articles were written, and so cannot be referred to by them".
Theological dialogue with the Roman Catholic Church has produced common documents that speak of "substantial agreement" about the doctrine of the Eucharist: the ARCIC Windsor Statement of 1971, and its 1979 Elucidation. Remaining arguments can be found in the Church of England's pastoral letter: The Eucharist: Sacrament of Unity.
Lutherans explicitly reject transubstantiation believing that the bread and wine remain fully bread and fully wine while also being truly the body and blood of Jesus Christ. Lutheran churches instead emphasize the "sacramental union (not exactly the "consubstantiation, as is often claimed) and believe that within the Eucharistic celebration the body and blood of Jesus Christ are objectively present "in, with, and under the forms" of bread and wine (cf. "Book of Concord). They place great stress on Jesus' instructions to "take and eat", and "take and drink", holding that this is the proper, divinely ordained use of the sacrament, and, while giving it due reverence, scrupulously avoid any actions that might indicate or lead to superstition or unworthy fear of the sacrament.
Classical "Presbyterianism held Calvin's view of "pneumatic presence" or "spiritual feeding", a real presence by the Spirit for those who have faith. "John Calvin "can be regarded as occupying a position roughly midway between" the doctrines of Martin Luther on one hand and Huldrych Zwingli on the other. He taught that "the thing that is signified is effected by its sign", declaring: "Believers ought always to live by this rule: whenever they see symbols appointed by the Lord, to think and be convinced that the truth of the thing signified is surely present there. For why should the Lord put in your hand the symbol of his body, unless it was to assure you that you really participate in it? And if it is true that a visible sign is given to us to seal the gift of an invisible thing, when we have received the symbol of the body, let us rest assured that the body itself is also given to us." ["citation needed]
The Westminster Shorter Catechism summarises the teaching:
Q. What is the Lord's supper?
A. The Lord's supper is a sacrament, wherein, by giving and receiving bread and wine according to Christ's appointment, his death is showed forth; and the worthy receivers are, not after a corporal and carnal manner, but by faith, made partakers of his body and blood, with all his benefits, to their spiritual nourishment and growth in grace.
"Methodists believe in the real presence of Christ in the bread and wine (or grape juice) while, like Anglicans and Lutherans, rejecting transubstantiation. According to the "United Methodist Church, "Jesus Christ, who 'is the reflection of God's glory and the exact imprint of God's very being' (Hebrews 1:3), is truly present in "Holy Communion."
While upholding the view that "scripture is the primary source of Church practice, Methodists also "look to church tradition and base their beliefs on the early Church teachings on the Eucharist, that Christ has a real presence in the Lord's Supper. The Catechism for the use of the people called Methodists thus states that, "[in Holy Communion] Jesus Christ is "present with his worshipping people and gives himself to them as their Lord and Saviour".
the Catholic Church professes that, in the celebration of the Eucharist, bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Ghost and the instrumentality of the priest.
By the late 1840s Anglo-Catholic interest in the revival of ritual had given new life to doctrinal debate over the nature of the Eucharist. Initially, 'the Tractarians were concerned only to exalt the importance of the sacrament and did not engage in doctrinal speculation'. Indeed they were generally hostile to the doctrine of transubstantiation. For an orthodox Anglo-Catholic such as Dyce the doctrine of the Real Presence was acceptable, but that of transubstantiation was not.
The doctrine had been affirmed by Anglican theologians, through the ages, including Lancelot Andrewes, Jeremy Taylor (who taught the doctrine of the Real Presence at the eucharist, but attacked Roman transubstantiation), William Laud and John Cosin - all in the seventeenth century - as well as in the nineteenth century Tractarians and their successors.
We reject transubstantiation because the Bible teaches that the bread and the wine are still present in the Lord's Supper (1 Corinthians 10:16, 1 Corinthians 11:27-28). We do not worship the elements because Jesus commands us to eat and to drink the bread and the wine. He does not command us to worship them.
Although some Lutherans have used the term 'consbstantiation' [sic] and it might possibly be understood correctly (e.g., the bread & wine, body & blood coexist with each other in the Lord's Supper), most Lutherans reject the term because of the false connotation it contains...either that the body and blood, bread and wine come together to form one substance in the Lord’s Supper or that the body and blood are present in a natural manner like the bread and the wine. Lutherans believe that the bread and the wine are present in a natural manner in the Lord’s Supper and Christ’s true body and blood are present in an illocal, supernatural manner.