[quote=rbrooks]He says communion at the non-denominational, community church his family attends, is as valid as the Eucharist Catholics receive at mass. Nowhere in Scripture does it say a priest must consecrate the bread and wine and the validity is in our hearts. If we know and believe that it is Christ’s’ body and Blood, that is what we get 100%.
This style of Eucharistic theology is called “receptionism.” ie, if you believe this is really the Body of Christ, that’s what it is. If you don’t believe, then it’s not. It’s the same B/bread in either case, but it "becomes’ the Body of Christ if the recipient believes that’s what it is. So everyone partakes of the same bread, but for some (believers) it is really the Body of Christ, and for others (non-believers) it’s ordinary bread.
Although receptionism is a very weak version of Real Presence theology, it IS a Real Presence theology (as opposed to a theology that recognizes the Eucharist as a purely symbolic ceremony). So your brother-in-law recognizes some form of the Real Presence. To him (presumably a believer), he thinks he’s taking the Body of Christ (not mealy a symbol). That’s a good starting point.
If this Bread is really the Body of Christ (as your brother-in-law believes), then this Bread is part of a sacrifice (because the Body of Christ was offered in sacrifice). It is well established in Biblical theology (since Moses) that only priests may offer sacrifice.
I agree, no place in Scripture will we find instructions or a “recipe” for a valid consecration.
Don’t be so eager to agree with this. See, for example, 1Cor. While you may agree that Scripture never says, “only a priest may offer Eucharist,” it is obvious that ONLY the Apostles and their ordained bishops ever actually did so. It is CERTINALLY not Biblical to suppose that “anyone” may offer Eucharist.
He says, he does not believe the Catholic Church to be the same church today as it was when founded by Christ. Today it has been corrupted by men and does not stand with any authority.
Of course, it always comes down to the issue of authority (as it should!). But the Church has ALWAYS been made up of corrupt people! Our first Pope was St. Peter. Among his first words to Jesus were, “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.” And this Pope denied Jesus three times!
Of course the Church will be made up of sinners - even the finest Popes are sinners. But, remember, Jesus instructed his followers to recognize authority APART from personal merit:
OBEY the Pharisees [Pope], for they sit on the seat of Moses [Peter]. But after their actions, do ye not, for they preach what they do not practice.
Yes, Our Lord fully understood that Church leaders would be hypocrites - but he instructed us to obey them anyway! This is a VERY important point!
Hence, the bible is our only true authority today and the Church is a thing of the past and is no longer needed.
Where is THAT in the Bible?