Being "carded" for Communion

This discussion was created from comments split from: America! America! God shed his grace on thee! The 2021 USA Thread.
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  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    I was carded once in church. At the communion rail the priest asked me if I had been baptized before ministering the sacred elements to me.
  • Miss Amanda, somehow I just can not see Jesus doing that.
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    What an idiot. Such action is a source of scandal and in breach of canon law-yes, really!

    I’m guessing he was a Roman...
  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    edited January 8
    Episcopalian. Mystery Worshipped here on the old Ship: http://ship-of-fools.com/mystery/2004/859.html
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    Episcopalian. Mystery Worshipped here on the old Ship: http://ship-of-fools.com/mystery/2004/859.html

    Thanks. Just read the report: what an eejit.

  • I dunno. In our Vietnamese context, we routinely have to ask those kind of questions, because of the number of people who assume that the table is for everybody and anybody under any circumstances, and have decided that going forward without a single solitary clue what it's about (nor any faith in Christ) is a great way to repay Pastor Z for his kindness to their family. Seriously. We also have that problem with baptism. Some were totally convinced that our family received money (!) every time somebody got baptized. Yeccchh.

    They may well have had the same problem.
  • I wondered if perhaps the priest asked Miss Amanda The Question simply because he didn't recognise her? Or maybe thought he did, but wasn't sure?

    Either way, the rest of the Report is pretty positive (mostly).
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    I dunno. In our Vietnamese context, we routinely have to ask those kind of questions, because of the number of people who assume that the table is for everybody and anybody under any circumstances, and have decided that going forward without a single solitary clue what it's about (nor any faith in Christ) is a great way to repay Pastor Z for his kindness to their family. Seriously. We also have that problem with baptism. Some were totally convinced that our family received money (!) every time somebody got baptized. Yeccchh.

    They may well have had the same problem.
    I wondered if perhaps the priest asked Miss Amanda The Question simply because he didn't recognise her? Or maybe thought he did, but wasn't sure?

    Either way, the rest of the Report is pretty positive (mostly).

    No excuse.

    Doesn’t sound like your typical immigrant parish for a start and as for not recognising the communicant...

    I might have excused the priest if it were an Orthodox parish but no, sorry, that doesn’t wash.

    Bloody disgraceful. Not even ++ George quondam Sydneiensis would have stooped to such petty legalism.

  • Okay, what the hell, I'll play target today.

    If we had a complete stranger (note: I do not know if Miss Amanda was such or not) come up to the altar, I probably would have whispered the same thing. Because in our church body, we do in fact, like for realsies, not as a symbol but as a yikes! possibility, believe that St. Paul was right and that taking communion improperly (which would certainly include "without faith") is a dangerous thing. Truly believing that, it becomes a duty to warn anybody approaching the table of the issue, lest we have their blood on our hands. (And if you think this is hyperbolic, you have no idea the blasphemy I have seen (once only, thank God) at the communion table.)

    Now, we are fortunate enough to have a small parish where everybody is known by face (for those who are not faceblind, like me) and therefore any newcomer would be taken aside for a quiet word on the side before service started. But if someone came in late, or just got missed somehow, there might be a whispering. In fact, I've been to other churches in our denom and have been quietly "checked" and have never resented it, because I know the concern that is driving it.

    I am aware that some people (including my own grandparents, before they came to faith) find this highly offensive and an intrusion on their "rights." Me, I don't think any of us have "rights" at the altar, except to be treated with lovingkindness and respect. Simply being asked about one's baptism doesn't seem disrespectful to me, particularly in an ethnic context where one can safely assume that most visitors are NOT in fact baptized.
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    No need to play target LC.

    As I pointed out the parish in question was not an immigrant parish, and I might add that this is not about anyone's "rights".

    You may recall ( if you've read the report recently) that the presiding cleric actually invited all the baptised to the communion rail before the distribution of communion.

    It beggars belief that after issuing that invitation that he should have seen fit to quiz Miss Amanda further regarding her baptismal status.

    Do I make myself clear?
  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    edited January 9
    If we had a complete stranger (note: I do not know if Miss Amanda was such or not) come up to the altar, I probably would have whispered the same thing.
    If I remember correctly, the priest greeted me before the service and we had a brief chat. I forget whether he asked me if I had a home parish, but surely I couldn't have looked like a pagan or a hoodlum to him. And he could have assumed that, having heard his invitation to all baptized persons to receive communion, I had at least satisfied myself that I fit into that category.

    And I have visited hundreds of churches of all denominations in my Mystery Worship adventures and had never before been "carded", nor ever since.
  • LydaLyda Shipmate
    Lamb Chopped, could I ask, does your Lutheran Missouri Synod church offer communion only to LMS members? I taught at an LMS school and I was required to join the church (for the job) and then I also had to be confirmed before I could receive communion. Of course, I was already baptized as an infant through the Episcopal church, which they knew. Come to think of it, they took my word and didn't need a baptismal certificate.

    Or am I completely confusing things and that you are not Missouri Synod?
  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited January 9
    I'm Missouri Synod, yes. And our church is in an ongoing fight about communion for the reasons mentioned above. Officially and ordinarily those who come to communion are expected to be LCMS OR OR OR to have talked with the pastor or elder beforehand so as to make sure we're basically on the same page doctrinally speaking. Thus for years we communed a Wisconsin Synod woman, and we (Mr. Lamb and I) led a youth Bible class in a Vietnamese Southern Baptist church which was a de facto Lutheran confirmation class because the pastor there was a crypto-Lutheran and had explicitly agreed to it.

    There are certainly those, pastors included, who get what I regard as way too uptight about the table. There are those who go to the opposite extreme. The question is a surefire way to start a fight in any LCMS official gathering, which is a pity.

    In the end, of course, Jesus Christ over-rules everything. And I have no doubt that some of us are going to be told we fucked up. But we're not at all clear right now just who that's going to be... and so the sensible ones try to stay humble and as much as possible, avoid being assholes.

    Re: teaching positions, this is going to be an individual call on the part of each school. Some really really want everybody to be rostered, which is to say "official" church workers, which naturally requires membership. Others don't mind. I myself am NOT rostered and inclined to stay that way, as me being a laywoman really chaps the hide of a bunch of people in my synod who could do with a hidechapping. (I get some really colorful comments occasionally.) More important, it encourages the women--like me--who feel called to serve, and have been misled by self-important ... creatures... into thinking that being female disqualifies them. Bah.

    As for being confirmed, that is really a custom, not a requirement. Mr. Lamb has never been confirmed (though he HAS been baptized!) and he's been an ordained LCMS pastor for 32 years. Most people don't bother with official confirmation when someone comes in as an adult.
  • When we were visiting the UK a few years ago, I had the priest ask if the kids were baptized (I spoke to him beforehand to make sure there wouldn't be any difficulty with the kids taking communion, given that they are habitual communicants in our own church, and I didn't know where his parish stood on communion for children. So he asked if they were baptized then.)

    I think I've been asked once at the altar rail - it would have been whilst travelling, and was probably a fairly spiky shack. I don't object to being asked.

  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    Well, bully for you.

    For many years this RC sang in theEvensong choir in a very spiky shack in Sinny ( an exceptional place if you know anything about Sydney Anglicana). No priest there would have done such a thing.

  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    I'm Missouri Synod, yes. And our church is in an ongoing fight about communion for the reasons mentioned above. Officially and ordinarily those who come to communion are expected to be LCMS OR OR OR to have talked with the pastor or elder beforehand so as to make sure we're basically on the same page doctrinally speaking. Thus for years we communed a Wisconsin Synod woman, and we (Mr. Lamb and I) led a youth Bible class in a Vietnamese Southern Baptist church which was a de facto Lutheran confirmation class because the pastor there was a crypto-Lutheran and had explicitly agreed to it.

    There are certainly those, pastors included, who get what I regard as way too uptight about the table. There are those who go to the opposite extreme. The question is a surefire way to start a fight in any LCMS official gathering, which is a pity.

    In the end, of course, Jesus Christ over-rules everything. And I have no doubt that some of us are going to be told we fucked up. But we're not at all clear right now just who that's going to be... and so the sensible ones try to stay humble and as much as possible, avoid being assholes.

    Re: teaching positions, this is going to be an individual call on the part of each school. Some really really want everybody to be rostered, which is to say "official" church workers, which naturally requires membership. Others don't mind. I myself am NOT rostered and inclined to stay that way, as me being a laywoman really chaps the hide of a bunch of people in my synod who could do with a hidechapping. (I get some really colorful comments occasionally.) More important, it encourages the women--like me--who feel called to serve, and have been misled by self-important ... creatures... into thinking that being female disqualifies them. Bah.

    As for being confirmed, that is really a custom, not a requirement. Mr. Lamb has never been confirmed (though he HAS been baptized!) and he's been an ordained LCMS pastor for 32 years. Most people don't bother with official confirmation when someone comes in as an adult.

    Interesting, that.

    In the RC tradition an incomer (?) would be confirmed at reception if already baptised in another tradition and both baptised and confirmed if not.

  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited January 9
    Confirmation for us is no sacrament but rather a human rite which allows the baptized to make their own vows and confession of faith as adults (more or less). It us rather like bar mitzvah in some ways. You leave childhood behind (we hope, anyway). I gather that RCs believe some special contact with the Spirit is made? We think that happens once and forever at baptism, though some (like me) may come to faith through the word long before actual baptism.
  • SojournerSojourner Shipmate
    That is at it may be.

    I personally have no dog in the fight regarding the sacraments whether in number ( 2 vs 7) or their importance/efficacy.

    My initial comments have been entirely about the propriety of a cleric's questioning a communicant re their baptismal credentials at the altar rail.

    Whatever you think ( and whatever the party line of the Lutheran Missouri Synod might be) doesn't alter my view that that particular cleric as described by Miss Amanda done wrong big time.
  • LydaLyda Shipmate
    Thanks, Lamb Chopped. I knew I had experienced only one, tiny corner of LMS. Sounds like a typical denomination to me. :wink:
  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    Our church is in an ongoing fight about communion
    A fight over communion? Lord help us!
  • Better than my Church which is in an ongoing fight over whether to kiss Trump's ass and internalize the Toxic Evangelical Right's marching orders and whitewash them as the faith once delivered to the apostles.
  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    mousethief wrote: »
    Better than my Church which is in an ongoing fight over whether to kiss Trump's ass and internalize the Toxic Evangelical Right's marching orders and whitewash them as the faith once delivered to the apostles.

    Kiss his ass? With the same lips that kiss the holy altar? Stop the world; I want to get off.
  • Bishops FingerBishops Finger Shipmate
    edited January 9
    *swoons at the very thought*

    *Takes a proffered dose of Brain-Bleach, and recovers from swoon*


    Is Most Outrageous Outrage!
  • mousethief wrote: »
    Better than my Church which is in an ongoing fight over whether to kiss Trump's ass and internalize the Toxic Evangelical Right's marching orders and whitewash them as the faith once delivered to the apostles.

    Kiss his ass? With the same lips that kiss the holy altar? Stop the world; I want to get off.

    Only clergy kiss the altar, but plenty of those have gone over as well.
  • mt--

    How does/would that play out? Is there an article I can read?

    Thx.
  • Amanda B ReckondwythAmanda B Reckondwyth Mystery Worship Editor
    mousethief wrote: »
    Only clergy kiss the altar, but plenty of those have gone over as well.
    I heard it said once that the devil likes nothing better than to keep a priest from prayer. Unfortunately, despite the best efforts of St. Michael the Archangel, the devil still "prowls about the world seeking the destruction of souls."
  • Golden Key wrote: »
    mt--

    How does/would that play out? Is there an article I can read?

    Thx.

    Not sure what you're asking.
  • mousethief wrote: »
    Golden Key wrote: »
    mt--

    How does/would that play out? Is there an article I can read?

    Thx.

    Not sure what you're asking.

    What you said here:
    Better than my Church which is in an ongoing fight over whether to kiss Trump's ass and internalize the Toxic Evangelical Right's marching orders and whitewash them as the faith once delivered to the apostles.

    What does that mean? Supporting T? And how would they do what you said about the "Toxic Evangelical Right"?
  • The place to see it is on Twitter and Facebook (I'm not on Parler or Reddit so I can't say about those). Mostly I try to stay away from it but I'm on a Facebook Group (Orthodox Christians opposing Trump or something like that) and occasionally we get despatches from the front.
  • I'm having to remember back to my first Sunday at the church I went to in Japan (Lutheran, Missouri Synod). I know I was there more than an hour before the service because there was an English language fellowship group before the service (which was in Japanese), and had had a chance to talk to both the missionary attached to the church and the pastor, and at the start of the service I was invited to introduce myself (thankfully translated because my Japanese was never that good). I was given a copy of the liturgy which had the Japanese plus the English translation* so I could follow and join in and got prompts about when to go forward for Communion. There was never any suggestion I shouldn't receive, but the time before the service was also plenty of time to quiz me about my status (baptism, church membership etc).

    *technically, I expect the service was originally in English and had been translated into Japanese.
  • Lamb ChoppedLamb Chopped Shipmate
    edited January 10
    Japan is no longer on mission status, but is a full sister church of ours, and makes their own decisions. Some of those decisions are not quite what we might do. But then, we are no longer their parent church! Which is as it should be.
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    The only time I've been asked if I was baptized was when I was attending weekday Anglican services for a few months in Canada about a decade ago.

    Not being a believer in the divinity of Christ, I refrained from taking Communion.

    One morning, the priest approached me afterwards and noted that I don't take Communion. I replied with something related to my status(probably either that I was a non-Anglican or a non-Christian) and he asked "Have you been baptized?", the implication being that I could take Communion if I had been.

    I suppose in that instance the officiant was asking in order to further inclusion, not exclusion, ie. he was encouraging a non-communicant to participate, not prevent a communicant from participating. Though I assume that if I had said I was never baptized, he would have stopped encouraging me.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    I'm Missouri Synod, yes. And our church is in an ongoing fight about communion for the reasons mentioned above. Officially and ordinarily those who come to communion are expected to be LCMS OR OR OR to have talked with the pastor or elder beforehand so as to make sure we're basically on the same page doctrinally speaking. Thus for years we communed a Wisconsin Synod woman, and we (Mr. Lamb and I) led a youth Bible class in a Vietnamese Southern Baptist church which was a de facto Lutheran confirmation class because the pastor there was a crypto-Lutheran and had explicitly agreed to it.

    On days when there is a collection of strangers at St Sanity - eg a baptism - whoever is presiding will usually give a specific invitation that all who have been baptised and are members of another church are welcome to take communion. In years past, there would often be some from the local Salvation Army attending and they would be specifically welcomed - receiving communion being the reason for their attendance.

    Often when travelling, we've been somewhere lacking an Anglican church, and we've normally chatted with the priest beforehand. Never been knocked back. In Vienna one year on St Augustine's day, we went to the Augustinerkirche, where the choir was sining a Mozart mass. No opportunity to have the chat, but we still took communion - I received the Host from the Cardinal Archbishop.
  • stetson wrote: »
    I suppose in that instance the officiant was asking in order to further inclusion, not exclusion, ie. he was encouraging a non-communicant to participate, not prevent a communicant from participating. Though I assume that if I had said I was never baptized, he would have stopped encouraging me.
    Or he might have offered to baptize you if that was what you wanted.

  • RuthRuth Shipmate
    Many years ago I visited a friend who was dying, and while I was there his LCMS pastor came to give him communion. My friend was in another room for a while when the pastor arrived, so he and I talked. When he gave communion to my friend he also offered it to me, a kindness for which I was grateful, as it was one of the last times I saw my friend, and I hadn't expected to be able to take communion with him. Reflecting on it as I drove home, I realized that the pastor had deftly led me to tell him my views of the sacrament during our conversation and had decided they were sufficient - he had been as cunning as he was kind, and my gratitude was overlaid with amusement.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    A very thoughtful pastor indeed.
  • Gee D wrote: »
    I'm Missouri Synod, yes. And our church is in an ongoing fight about communion for the reasons mentioned above. Officially and ordinarily those who come to communion are expected to be LCMS OR OR OR to have talked with the pastor or elder beforehand so as to make sure we're basically on the same page doctrinally speaking. Thus for years we communed a Wisconsin Synod woman, and we (Mr. Lamb and I) led a youth Bible class in a Vietnamese Southern Baptist church which was a de facto Lutheran confirmation class because the pastor there was a crypto-Lutheran and had explicitly agreed to it.

    On days when there is a collection of strangers at St Sanity - eg a baptism - whoever is presiding will usually give a specific invitation that all who have been baptised and are members of another church are welcome to take communion. In years past, there would often be some from the local Salvation Army attending and they would be specifically welcomed - receiving communion being the reason for their attendance.

    Often when travelling, we've been somewhere lacking an Anglican church, and we've normally chatted with the priest beforehand. Never been knocked back. In Vienna one year on St Augustine's day, we went to the Augustinerkirche, where the choir was sining a Mozart mass. No opportunity to have the chat, but we still took communion - I received the Host from the Cardinal Archbishop.

    If I attend RC Mass I seek a blessing unless I am invited to receive, out of respect for the rules of that church.
  • Japan is no longer on mission status, but is a full sister church of ours, and makes their own decisions. Some of those decisions are not quite what we might do. But then, we are no longer their parent church! Which is as it should be.
    I should have been clear, the missionary wasn't really working with the church in a way that would be expected for establishing a church (the church was 50 years old, and didn't really need help to establish themselves). The missionaries (there were two at different times while I was there, plus an earlier couple had got jobs locally and were still members of the church) were ELCA* working as English teachers in local schools and the church (the English language school had been part of what had been the missionary work when the church was established, and was continued because it served the community) to support themselves as evangelists and informal pastoral role to the immigrant community (mostly Americans, barely more than kids, working as English language assistants in high schools).

    *for some reason I'd gone with this vision of ELCA and LCMS being antagonistic to each other ... but the LCMS founded Japanese churches were certainly happy to work with ELCA and there was no problem.
  • For RCs it is part of the mission of the Church to protect the Sacraments which it has the honour, privilege and duty to administer to those who seek them. In different ways the last few posters have shown their respect for the Sacraments also ,either by refraining from receiving Communion because of disparity of belief or indeed by taking a full part even although they may not be full communicant members of a particular community.

    The teaching of the Catholic church is clear - people should be prepared for Communion - all the baptised belong to one Church, though some may not be in full communion with the Church. If these people share the eucharistic faith of the Church and have no access to clergy of their own eucharistic community, they should be welcome at Catholic altars - all other things being equal.

    Many years ago I was visiting an old lady who wished to receive Communion. When I arrived she had an old friend also visiting her who was a Presbyterian minister. He asked if he could remain for the short service and I was glad to say yes, of course. I asked him if he would like to read the Gospel passage. By chance I happened to have two Hosts in the pyx.
    Feeling that this was providential I asked him also if he would like to receive Communion with his old friend and he said yes. I felt that that day I had done a good deed in the name of the Lord, though I don't think I have ever mentioned it to anyone in the last 25 years.
  • Gee DGee D Shipmate
    Gee D wrote: »
    I'm Missouri Synod, yes. And our church is in an ongoing fight about communion for the reasons mentioned above. Officially and ordinarily those who come to communion are expected to be LCMS OR OR OR to have talked with the pastor or elder beforehand so as to make sure we're basically on the same page doctrinally speaking. Thus for years we communed a Wisconsin Synod woman, and we (Mr. Lamb and I) led a youth Bible class in a Vietnamese Southern Baptist church which was a de facto Lutheran confirmation class because the pastor there was a crypto-Lutheran and had explicitly agreed to it.

    On days when there is a collection of strangers at St Sanity - eg a baptism - whoever is presiding will usually give a specific invitation that all who have been baptised and are members of another church are welcome to take communion. In years past, there would often be some from the local Salvation Army attending and they would be specifically welcomed - receiving communion being the reason for their attendance.

    Often when travelling, we've been somewhere lacking an Anglican church, and we've normally chatted with the priest beforehand. Never been knocked back. In Vienna one year on St Augustine's day, we went to the Augustinerkirche, where the choir was sining a Mozart mass. No opportunity to have the chat, but we still took communion - I received the Host from the Cardinal Archbishop.

    If I attend RC Mass I seek a blessing unless I am invited to receive, out of respect for the rules of that church.

    We would normally seek out approval to receive, which has never been refused; indeed, we won't take at ur local Catholic church, although the priest has given approval. He is a very good priest, and we don't want to put him at any risk. But there was no possibility of seeking out the approval on this occasion.
  • Speaking as a former member of a group from completely the other end of the liturgical spectrum...the Open Brethren who have no clergy, no formal liturgy...it was nevertheless standard practice to be required to produce written evidence of one's right to share in communion when visiting a fellowship where one was unknown. The required piece of paper was called a letter of commendation, which one would request from the elders of one's own fellowship in advance of travelling where one was not known. They developed this practise from Paul's letters I believe, who sometimes commended particular individuals to the church he was writing to. There is no central heirarchy in this group, who do not even call themselves a denomination, so this method was the way they 'fenced the table'. I have no idea if the practice continues....my family left the brethren in the early 80s.
  • Gracious Rebel: you posted about 20 minutes before I was about to say something very similar! I used to attend an Assembly (sadly now defunct) in Southampton in the very early 1970s. One morning - although not really a member - I felt a "nudge" to lead the Breaking of Bread and did so. Afterwards a fellow-student said, "You shouldn't have done that"; but one of the Elders came up to me and said how delighted he was that I had!

    I came across an interesting practice in NE Scotland in the mid-70s: this was after the ultra-exclusive "Taylorite" Brethren had fallen into scandal. Basically the Exclusives realised that they had to open up more to avoid similar problems in the future, while the Open Brethren closed in on themselves as a way of protecting themselves from those problems. I don't know what effect this had on admission to the Lord's Table, though.
  • Forthview wrote: »
    For RCs it is part of the mission of the Church to protect the Sacraments which it has the honour, privilege and duty to administer to those who seek them. In different ways the last few posters have shown their respect for the Sacraments also ,either by refraining from receiving Communion because of disparity of belief or indeed by taking a full part even although they may not be full communicant members of a particular community.

    The teaching of the Catholic church is clear - people should be prepared for Communion - all the baptised belong to one Church, though some may not be in full communion with the Church. If these people share the eucharistic faith of the Church and have no access to clergy of their own eucharistic community, they should be welcome at Catholic altars - all other things being equal.

    Many years ago I was visiting an old lady who wished to receive Communion. When I arrived she had an old friend also visiting her who was a Presbyterian minister. He asked if he could remain for the short service and I was glad to say yes, of course. I asked him if he would like to read the Gospel passage. By chance I happened to have two Hosts in the pyx.
    Feeling that this was providential I asked him also if he would like to receive Communion with his old friend and he said yes. I felt that that day I had done a good deed in the name of the Lord, though I don't think I have ever mentioned it to anyone in the last 25 years.

    An uplifting story - thank you!

    On reception of Communion outside one's own denomination (C of E in my case), I have done so on numerous occasions in France, with AIUI the blessing of the French RCC, inasmuch as they are happy for this to occur if there is no Anglican church nearby (which, of course, is usually the case in that country!).
  • stetsonstetson Shipmate
    Pigwidgeon wrote: »
    stetson wrote: »
    I suppose in that instance the officiant was asking in order to further inclusion, not exclusion, ie. he was encouraging a non-communicant to participate, not prevent a communicant from participating. Though I assume that if I had said I was never baptized, he would have stopped encouraging me.
    Or he might have offered to baptize you if that was what you wanted.

    Yes. I was gonna write "...would have stopped encouraging me until such time as I had been baptized", but I thought it woulda made the sentence somewhat long-winded.
  • OblatusOblatus Shipmate
    The done thing hereabouts is to make the "baptized Christians" rule known in the service sheet and during the announcements -- "All baptized Christians are invited to receive Communion," and then do no police work at the altar rail. The people are presumed to have heard the rule.
  • Hmm ... the problem you have with that is that there may be people present who, for any number of reasons, haven't been baptised (or may not even know whether they have been!) Should they be rebuffed?
  • On a completely different end of experiential continuum, when my mother in law was dying, in hospital. We were visited by the "chaplain on call" multiple times. Apparently RC priests will stretch things to include Anglicans at times, which in this case was the day before she died.
  • At our place, the "rule" is that anyone may receive; at the start of Communion I'd tend to use words along the lines of "This is the Table of the Lord, and He turns away no one who would come to Him". If we have unknown visitors (as opposed to family members of the congregation, etc who are familiar with us anyway) then in the course of the welcome by the congregation we'll make sure they've been informed about Communion, someone will usually ask if they'd like to sit next to them to guide them through our practices and so on. If the minister is present she will usually take the opportunity when welcoming someone to make it clear that they're welcome to receive Communion if they wish, but equally welcome to just pass the plate along. When she's not present, that would probably be my job (I'm sure the job description for Church Secretary includes "do anything else that hasn't been done by someone else"), particularly if I'm leading worship and presiding.

    Though for now it would be good just to have a congregation back again, visitors seems to be in the distant future.
  • OblatusOblatus Shipmate
    Hmm ... the problem you have with that is that there may be people present who, for any number of reasons, haven't been baptised (or may not even know whether they have been!) Should they be rebuffed?

    Wouldn't be rebuffed but would be pastorally encouraged to consider Baptism and be aware that it's needed before Communion. This is just not done at the Communion rail or during a service. Although this is the canonical requirement ("No unbaptized person shall be eligible to receive the Holy Eucharist"), we seem to be one of the "conservative" parishes that doesn't just say "You're welcome to Communion no matter what." Because that's not the truth.
  • GalilitGalilit Shipmate

    If I attend RC Mass I seek a blessing unless I am invited to receive, out of respect for the rules of that church.

    I do that. Once (after I had been to Mass 17 days straight) instead of staying in my pew as usual I "went up" with that arms crossed gesture (like wot they do) and the Priest offered me the MPB anyway. I maintained my posture and he blessed me. I thought it was rather nice that he offered and had I taken it he'd have been happy and thought he'd done The Right Thing; as in WWJD. But I think he was secretly pleased I didn't; as in how he saw things in the Roman Catholic Chruch.
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