Main Menu  

Home
Welcome
Site Map
The Journal
What is it? Email Editor Journal Index Library Index Summer 2004 (12.2) January 2004 (12.1) Summer 2003 (11.2) January 2003 (11.1) Summer 2002 (10.2) January 2002 (10.1) Summer 2001 (9.2) January 2001 (9.1) Summer 2000 (8.2) January 2000 (8.1) Summer 1999 (7.2) January 1999 (7.1) Summer 1998 (6.2) January 1998 (6.1) Summer 1997 (5.2) January 1997 (5.1) Summer 1996 (4.2) January 1996 (4.1) Summer 1995 (3.2) January 1995 (3.1) Summer 1994 (2.2) January 1994 (2.1) Summer 1993 (1.2) January 1993 (1.1) Summer 1992 Summer 1990
Christian Unity
International News and Publications
Conferences
Domestic Church Project
Episcopal Statements & Responses
Other Publications
Other Articles
Sacramental and Other Resources
Baptism Eucharist Marriage Death & Bereavement General Resources
Country Sites

   

EUCHARISTIC SHARING FOR INTERCHURCH FAMILIES

THE ROMAN CATHOLIC POSITION IN OUTLINE

The documents:

Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism 1964
Code of Canon Law 1983
Directory for the Application of Principles and Norms on Ecumenism 1993
Encyclical Ut Unum Sint, 1995
Common Declaration of Pope John Paul Il and the Archbishop of Canterbury 1996

Eucharistic sharing is NOT ONLY PERMITTED BUT POSITIVELY COMMENDED

in certain circumstances of serious spiritual need (Code, Directory)
of great desire (UUS)
by way of exception in particular cases
under certain conditions

What are the CIRCUMSTANCES where there may be serious need /great desire?

those in danger of death (Code)
those who share the sacraments of baptism and marriage (couple/family need added by Directory)
bishops can identify others

By way of exception in certain CASES

always applies to particular cases
pastoral application to particular people

(RC tradition of epikeia and other pastoral principles)

Under certain CONDITIONS

cannot ask own minister for communion
there must be a request
manifest Catholic faith in the eucharist
be properly disposed

WHO IS TO DECIDE on admission?

Episcopal Conferences/diocesan bishops are to prepare guidelines (after consultation with other churches)
Catholic minister decides in particular cases (in accordance with bishops' guidelines or the Directory where there are none)

SOME APPLICATIONS OF THE CODE AND THE DIRECTORY

The French Bishops, 1983 (following the Code)
The Archbishop of Brisbane's Pastoral Guidelines, 1995 (following the Directory)
The German Bishops' Ecumenical Commission, 1997 (repeated in Austria by the Archbishop of Vienna for his archdiocese, 1997)
The Southern African Catholic Bishops' Conference: Ecumenical Directory, 2003