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October 24, 2004

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According to the rubrics, only a priest can consecrate the elements. There is such a thing as a "Deacon's Mass," though, that uses already-consecrated bread and wine. But there is no Great Thanksgiving; that part of the service is removed. There is only the Liturgy of the Word, and a short prayer of thanks following it before the Deacon administers communion.

John wilkins

Although I appreciate the sentiment, the cons include 1) needing some order or uniformity in the presence of the Bishop and/or his priests and by this way 2) mitigating the possibility of "lay popes." Still, small groups should gather, read scripture and have a feast together, with a blessing, lay led.

Sophia

I definitely am interested in the question of lay-people celebrating the eucharist - because I am in a situation nowadays that places me at odds with the organized church - and want to know what recourse God has in mind for me.

Someone wrote in a comment: "According to the rubrics, only a priest can consecrate the elements." But that person forgot that what is in question isn't whether or not the rubrics say that - but rather, whether or not the rubrics are *correct* in saying that.

Artsy Honker

Another point of data on this, though it's several years after you wrote the post:

In Judaism, it is customary to take bread and wine at the beginning of the Sabbath meal. Whoever is the head of the table makes the blessing over the bread and wine for all present. This is often the (male) head of the household but any adult can do it.

To me, that first Eucharist looks an awful lot like the wine and bread portion of the Sabbath meal. In the Christian liturgy, there are some pretty direct references to it: part 4 of this page has blessings that are analogous to HaMotzi and HaGafen.

(I've only stumbled upon this blog recently and am very much enjoying wending my way through it. I left Christianity because of doctrinal objections, nearly converted to Orthodox Judaism before realising that I had some of the same objections there too, and am in the process of examining what I believe and trying to figure out what that means for how I attempt to live.)

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