WHAT IF? — 9 Comments

  1. Yikes. A post on this (rather unexpectedly controversial) topic at Episcopal Cafe/The Lead gathered well over a 100 posts [MOST of which were excoriating “CB4B” (Communion Before Baptism) view]

    The Gatekeeper’s Perogative is still alive and well in TEC (more’s the pity).

  2. I didn’t bother to comment on Episcopal Cafe. Too much traffic.
    I endorse changing to allowing communion before baptism.
    Otherwise, I’m going to have to take credentials at the door before allowing anyone, even those I know to be baptized, to receive.

    I’m reminded of one Christian denomination – Missouri Synod? – that reportedly requires a chit from the pastor some time before a service of Holy Communion to insure the person is in good spiritual standing. Am I in the minority in the U.S. EC? Dunno.

    However, seeing as Jesus is apparently on my side, assuming he was being funny in the ‘toon above, I’m safe.

  3. It gladdens my heart each Sunday at St. Mark’s in Seattle when presiding priest or bishop makes it very clear that all are welcome at The Table (We, in fact, have a simple table, and not an altar.). My first Christmas Eve there, the invitation moved me to tears, catching me off guard. I suppose that it’s possible that if one has been excluded from community, the thought of doing that to another is anathema. Besides, it’s not as if it’s our gift to conserve, as opposed to share lavishly.

  4. Back in the day, it wsa common RC practice to say one could not receive on Sunday unless one went to confession earlier in the week. That led to actual lines awaiting access to the confessional booths on Saturdays. The Lutheran Church Missouri Synod equivalent was that when the pastor announced he was going to celebrate “the Lord’s Supper” a few Sundays before the event, the congregants were expected to see him privately in the interval between and declare their intent to receive. He was empowered to say, “no.” If one were visiting another congregation as for instance on holiday, there was an ID your home parish could issue identifying you as a member in good standing.
    No one checked at the time of communion, it was all sort of “known.”

    By the time I was a communicant member, the sheer numbers had forced some changes. Instead of actually having a conversation with the clergy, one filled in a pew card that identified one as a communicant and placed it in the collection plate with one’s contribution. If the pastor did not think you should be there,he could on review get in touch with you and say, “nope, not until you……”
    I am so glad we left when we did and found TEC!