Church of England view on the Eucharist?

What do the Anglicans think of the Eucharist?

Depends on which Anglican you ask.


Hi, GKC…someone in another thread stated the 39 articles deny the Real Presence. Is this true?

Being a Church of England member individually are allowed to think for ourselves :slight_smile: though there will be some priests who be very firm to educate you on their individual belief. Who is to say who is right and who isn’t right?

Some think it Cosubstantial and some think it … I always get the two the wrong way around etc… Whether Jesus is in the blood etc. Whether its a reainactment or the actual…

Is that what you are actually asking?

I keep out of such discussions because it complicates matters and turns the Eucharist into Politics and for me the Eucharist IS NOT about Politics… (Church Politics)

Just like female priests. I neither agree or disagree with it and well once they accepted Deacons they pretty much got to go the whole way and accept Archdeacons and Bishop of Canterbury will one day be female since we now have Deacons. All storms in a teacup stuff in reality.

I don’t know since I have never looked at the 39 articles and don’t get involved of that side of religion. :frowning:

That is true, but the 39 articles do not necessarily represent Anglican dogma.

Many Anglicans do indeed believe in the real presence, and it is allowed in the Anglican Communion.

This sums up everything that is wrong with the Anglican Communion.

QUOTE=1ke;9019688]This sums up everything that is wrong with the Anglican Communion.How does this help the general conversation in Non Catholic space…?

Just because you don’t like the Anglican Church from what I know of your other postings. :shrug:

This is what I was asking, but maybe there aren’t enough Anglicans here to get a varied response from.

Yours is good enough rhiannonh, I wanted to know if they believed it to be the flesh and blood of Christ or not.

Is there no definite church teaching on it at all? It’s just entirely up to the individual?

Because I’ve been to Anglican churches and the vicar there at one of them was very reverent when it came to distribution of the bread, but mostly other people showed a lot less care and attention when receiving.

No. They (Art. XXVIII) deny transubstantiation, as a theory of how the RP is present in the sacrament.

And the Articles are not normative for any Anglican, in themselves, save, in a technical sense only, for ordinands of the Church of England, IAW the Parliamentary Subscription Act of 1571. The CoE, being an Erastian church, can do things like that. Anglicans, in general, are not bound to affirm them, though some doubtless do. Me, I find transubstantiation as good an explanation of how the sacramental wheels go around as one can find.




The 39 Articles are a statement of the Church of England’s attitude towards the doctrinal disputes which were convulsing Europe at that time.

Article XXVIII does not deny real presence but rejects Transubstantiation. The article states that the Lords Supper is not a sign but rather a Sacrament of our redemption by Christ’s death…the bread which we break is a partaking of the Body of Christ; and likewise the Cup of Blessing is a partaking of the Blood of Christ.

The 1662 Book of Common Prayer is authorised for use in the Church of England. It upholds the Real Presence in a number of places.

From the Catechism we have:

*Q. Why was the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper ordained?
A. For the continual remembrance of the sacrifice of the death of Christ and of the benefits which we receive thereby.

Q. What is the outward part or sign of the Lord’s Supper?
A. Bread and Wine, which the Lord hath commanded to be received.

Q. What is the inward part, or thing signified?
A. The Body and Blood of Christ, which are verily and indeed taken and received by the faithful in the Lord’s Supper.

Q. What are the benefits whereof we are partakers thereby?
A. The strengthening and refreshing of our souls by the Body and Blood of Christ.

In the 1662 BCP Communion liturgy there is a long exhortation read by the priest, part of which states:

For as the benefit is great, if with a true penitent heart and lively faith we receive that holy Sacrament; so is the danger great, if we receive the same unworthily. For then we are guilty of the Body and Blood of Christ our Saviour; we eat and drink our own damnation, not considering the Lord’s Body; we kindle God’s wrath against us; we provoke him to plague us with divers diseases, and sundry kinds of death.

Much emphasis is placed by the 1662 BCP of receiving Communion with ‘ a quiet conscience’. In another exhortation within the Communion liturgy those who cannot come to Holy Communion with a quiet conscience are advised to seek the priest privately for confession, counsel and absolution.

Also in the 1662 BCP Communion liturgy is a very beautiful prayer known as the Prayer of Humble Access and composed from a number of ancient sources:

We do not presume to come to this thy Table, O merciful Lord, trusting in our own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies. We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table. But thou art the same Lord, whose property is always to have mercy: Grant us therefore, gracious Lord, so to eat the flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ, and to drink his blood, that our sinful bodies may be made clean by his body, and our souls washed through his most precious blood, and that we may evermore dwell in him, and he in us. Amen.

The Articles are still regarded as one of the historic formularies which Church of England ordinands are required to affirm. This does not apply to the laity. They have long been open to interpretation, perhaps most famously by J H Newman in Tract 90.

If they believe in the real presence but not transubstantiation, then when does the bread become His flesh?

Cardinal Newman while still a member of the CofE wrote a famous tract saying that the articles did not really deny transubstantiation, just one view of it in the 15th century.

At the Prayer of Consecration. This is a passage from the 1662 BCP version although there are 8 different Eucharistic Prayers in ‘Common Worship’ which is the other authorised service book of the Church of England.

…who, in the same night that he was betrayed, took Bread; and, when he had given thanks, he brake it, and gave it to his disciples, saying, Take, eat, this is my Body which is given for you: Do this in remembrance of me. Likewise after supper he took the Cup; and, when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of this; for this is my Blood of the New Testament, which is shed for you and for many for the remission of sins: Do this, as oft as ye shall drink it, in remembrance of me.

There are rubrics which direct the priest to perform certain manual acts at the Prayer of Consecration such as holding the Paten, breaking the bread, laying hands on all the bread, holding the Chalice and laying hands on all Chalices in which wine is to be consecrated.

In my diocese it is very common for the Host and Chalice to be elevated and the sacring bell to be rung from the tower.

The Eucharistic Prayers found in Common Worship have a clear Epliclesis which the 1662 BCP does not. A previous Rector had a liking for the 1549 BCP and Knott Missal which is still fresher in my mind. I prefer the 1549 version which also has a clear Epiclesis (as does the BCP as Proposed in 1928.)

Yes. Tract 90.


That exhortation was read at Mass last Sunday, in my parish. Following the 1928 Episcopal BCP.


It is invariable, in my parish, save that the altar bells are rung by the acolyte, at the words of Institution, and at each elevation (there being no tower).


The Prayer of Humble Access is a truly beautiful prayer. Someone involved in the papal visit told me that Pope Benedict also loves the wording to this prayer.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit