Skip to comments.The Primitive Church [Catholic/Eastern Orthodox/Oriental Orthodox Caucus]
Posted on 10/20/2013 6:48:43 PM PDT by markomalleyEdited on 10/20/2013 7:21:47 PM PDT by Admin Moderator. [history]
The primitive church was often talked about (snip). We learned that the early disciples prayed and worshiped in each other's houses and shared scripture, sang hymns just as we were doing (snip). This was what we believed was the way in which the early Christians worshiped. We figured, the closer we return to New Testament times, the more likely the worship would be unadulterated and just the way God intended.
But, then I read the writings of the Church Fathers such as Justin Martyr, Ignatius of Antioch, Polycarp, Irenaeus etc. Just as cave paintings give us a unique snapshot of the life of primitive man, the writings of the Early Church Fathers proide a unique snapshot of what the worship life and times were for the early primitive church. These early Christians were writing extensively about the Church before the end of the 2nd century. Ignatius of Antioch was a disciple of Saint John and possibly Saint Peter! Turns out that the primitive Church worship was centered around a thing now known as the mass. (snip) These early Christians believed and wrote extensively that the Lords table was actually partaking in the true body and blood of Christ, not just a memorial meal. The belief in Christs Real Presence in the Eucharist has been a part of Christian theology since the time of the apostles. [snip] In the Eucharist, celebrated daily in Catholic Churches throughout the world, one cannot get any closer to the breath of God than eating his real body and drinking his real blood. If Christians of good will want to be as close to the breath of God as possible, they will find that intimacy with Jesus in the Catholic Church.
Take care, then who belong to God and to Jesus Christ they are with the bishop. And those who repent and come to the unity of the Church they too shall be of God, and will be living according to Jesus Christ. Do not err, my brethren: if anyone follow a schismatic, he will not inherit the Kingdom of God. If any man walk about with strange doctrine, he cannot lie down with the passion. Take care, then, to use one Eucharist, so that whatever you do, you do according to God: for there is one Flesh of our Lord Jesus Christ, and one cup in the union of His Blood; one altar, as there is one bishop with the presbytery and my fellow servants, the deacons. Ignatius of Antioch 110 AD
Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died;
this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.”
The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us (his) flesh to eat?”
Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.
Whoever eats 19 my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day.
For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink
Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him.
Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me.
This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.”
These things he said while teaching in the synagogue in Capernaum
Then many of his disciples who were listening said, “This saying is hard; who can accept it?”
Since Jesus knew that his disciples were murmuring about this, he said to them, “Does this shock you?
What if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before?
It is the spirit that gives life, while the flesh is of no avail. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.
But there are some of you who do not believe.” Jesus knew from the beginning the ones who would not believe and the one who would betray him.
And he said, “For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by my Father.”
As a result of this, many (of) his disciples returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him
Jesus then said to the Twelve, “Do you also want to leave?”
Simon Peter answered him, “Master, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life.
We have come to believe and are convinced that you are the Holy One of God.”
Jesus answered them, “Did I not choose you twelve? Yet is not one of you a devil?”
He was referring to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot; it was he who would betray him, one of the Twelve. [John 6: 49-71]
The original poster of the article scrupulously omitted the passages which would break the caucus, so no and your post will be removed.
If that’s the case, shouldn’t the link to the entire article be omitted from “caucus” posts?
Anybody can selectively excerpt.
This is not the place to voice your complaints. Do NOT disturb a caucus.
St. Ignatius should know better than any Early Church Father the meaning of the Real Presence:
St. Ignatius of Antioch, the child who is greater in the kingdom of heavenOctober 17th, Feast of St. Ignatius of AntiochAt that hour the disciples came to Jesus, saying: Who thinkest thou is the greater in the kingdom of heaven? And Jesus calling unto him a little child, set him in the midst of them, And said: Amen I say to you, unless you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, he is the greater in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 18:1-4)According to an ancient tradition, St. Ignatius of Antioch was the child whom Christ took and presented to the apostles as the example of the one who is greater in the kingdom of heaven. From that day the child, who was most beloved by the Savior and favored with the divine embrace, was also marked as the one upon whom lions would feast in the Roman Colosseum.Turning to a sermon of the gentle Doctor, St. Francis de Sales, we will consider the example of this great bishop and martyr.
The favored child, the God BearerThe fact is this: Our Lord, seeing a little child one day, picked him up, kissed him and showed him to the Apostles, saying: I tell you solemnly, unless you become like this little child you will never enter Paradise. [Mt 18:2-3; Mk 9:35] Many say that this child was St. Martial, who later became Bishop of Limoges; but the more common opinion is that it was St. Ignatius the martyr, whose feast we celebrated yesterday [February 1st] and whose Office is transferred to tomorrow.Oh, how blessed was this glorious St. Ignatius, since he was taken up into Our Lords arms and given as an example to the Apostles! How precious and sweet was that kiss! What sacred, secret words Our Lord said to this happy child as He kissed him! How blessed he was to allow himself to be carried and handled by the Savior, who rewarded him by engraving His own sacred Name in the depths of his heart! (Sermon of St. Francis de Sales, on the Purification of Mary)It is important to note that, in the traditional calendar of the Roman Rite (which was in universal usage during St. Francis life), St. Ignatius feast is observed on February 1st rather than October 17th. This explains the Bishops reference to the feast celebrated yesterday and the Office observed tomorrow, since he gave this sermon on February 2nd, the feast of the Purification of Mary (now called the Presentation of Jesus).Having been carried by our Savior as a child, St. Ignatius as a grown man called himself Theophorus which means God Bearer. Hence, he indicates to us that there must be a connection between being carried by God and carrying God, between being blessed and favored by the Lord and accepting his providence and will in our lives.Taking the name God Bearer calls to mind another saint who held the Lord in his own arms. Namely, St. Simeon the priest to whom our Savior was presented in the Temple.St. Ignatius and St. SimeonThe close proximity of the St. Ignatius feast to the feast of the Purification of Mary (i.e. The Presentation of Jesus in the Temple) leads St. Francis to make an interesting parallel: We have St. Simeon the priest who carried Jesus, and we have St. Ignatius of Antioch whom Jesus carried. Whose example do we wish to imitate?The gentle Doctor, St. Francis, tells us that both must be followed and that the example of each is necessary for all whom Christ calls to perfection and who strive to take the narrow path unto salvation. We must be carried by the Savior whom we carry in our hearts.To be carried by our Savior, as was the child Ignatius, is to receive the divine favor and an abundance of spiritual graces. To carry the Lord, as did St. Simeon, is to accept and bear his providence in our lives, together with any pains or sufferings which may accompany his plan for us.The one whom Jesus carries as a child is blessed indeed and begins to enjoy the favors of heaven while yet on earth. However, the one who carries Jesus through bearing trials and sufferings for the love of God gains more in merit. While the former way is perhaps more perfect, the latter is most necessary. The former way corresponds to heaven, while the latter befits earth.And yet, we must not make too strong a distinction between the two, since he alone will have the strength to bear every burden who himself is carried by the grace of our Savor. And to him, whom our Savior favors with graces (carrying him in his divine love), many sufferings will also be added for, as a rule, those whom God favors with spiritual delights must also suffer much in the body and in the soul.If we would be carried like St. Ignatius, we must accept and bear the will of God after the example of St. Simeon. If we would have the strength to bear every suffering, we must seek refuge in and be upheld by the strong embrace of our Savior.Whom Christ bears, Who bears sufferingsLeave yourselves, then, entirely in the arms of His Divine Providence, submitting yourselves in what concerns His Law and disposing yourselves to endure all the pains and suffering that may come to you in this life. When you have done this you will find that the hardest and most painful things will be rendered sweet and agreeable to you, and you will share the happiness experienced by St. Simeon and St. Ignatius. (Sermon of St. Francis de Sales, on the Purification of Mary)And, truly, St. Ignatius of Antioch unites both examples in his own life for he was marked from his childhood as one favored not only with divine graces but also with martyrdom. Having been selected by our Savior as a boy, he was offered to the beasts in the Colosseum as a man. Rather than deny the God who had held him in his youth, St. Ignatius offered the supreme witness of his life to the same God whom he had long held in his heart.In a letter to St. Jane de Chantal (26 January 1615, of the occasion of preparations being made for the first Visitation foundation to be made in Lyons) St. Francis de Sales wrote:I have been thinking about the story of the great St. Ignatius who carried Jesus Christ in his heart and cheerfully went to serve as food for the lions and suffer the martyrdom of their fangs: and here you are, here we are, going to Lyons, please our Savior, to render Our lord various services and prepare souls for him so that he can be their bridegroom. What can stop us from going joyfully in the name of our Savior, since this saint went so blithely to be martyred for our Savior?
St. Ignatius of Antioch, Pray for us!
Evelyn Waugh, upon observing the rites of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, remarked that simplicity and comprehensibility are characteristics of modern times, while mystery and opacity are more typical of ancient rites.