Consecration of Host


#1

Hi Everyone,
I’m trying to explain the Eucharist to a protestant friend, and why a Priest is necessary for consecration of the Host. I explained apostolic succession, but they raised another more basic question: Why does someone have to formally consecrate the bread at all (regardless of who it is)? Didn’t Jesus consecrate the bread for all time at the last supper? Are there church fathers or scripture references that explain this? Is this more of Liturgical Tradition? In one sense it seems self evident that someone would have to do something, but how did it come about?
thanks, dljl


#2

[quote=dljl]Hi Everyone,
I’m trying to explain the Eucharist to a protestant friend, and why a Priest is necessary for consecration of the Host. I explained apostolic succession, but they raised another more basic question: Why does someone have to formally consecrate the bread at all (regardless of who it is)? Didn’t Jesus consecrate the bread for all time at the last supper? Are there church fathers or scripture references that explain this? Is this more of Liturgical Tradition? In one sense it seems self evident that someone would have to do something, but how did it come about?
thanks, dljl
[/quote]

When Jesus consecrated the Host at the last supper his audience was only the Apostles; because they were the only people with him in the room at the Last Supper. This supper was personal, special, intimate, and to a degree private, hence he would be crucified very soon! Had He wanted anybody to consecrate the Host he would have probably consecrated it from the top of the Mount of Olives, and address a larger population of Christian members and not just Apostles!

Jesus did not consecrate the bread for all time! Had he done this, then all bread moving forward would be His body! Hamburgers, sandwiches, etc…Therefore consecrations is necessary by Priest only, and not just by your average Christian member! Remember, Jesus is the High Priest.

God Bless!


#3

[quote=dljl]Hi Everyone,
I’m trying to explain the Eucharist to a protestant friend, and why a Priest is necessary for consecration of the Host. I explained apostolic succession, but they raised another more basic question: Why does someone have to formally consecrate the bread at all (regardless of who it is)? Didn’t Jesus consecrate the bread for all time at the last supper? Are there church fathers or scripture references that explain this? Is this more of Liturgical Tradition? In one sense it seems self evident that someone would have to do something, but how did it come about?
thanks, dljl
[/quote]

I think you’ll find this article very helpful:

bringyou.to/apologetics/a31.htm


#4

During the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, the priests acts as the person of Christ, offering the sacrifice. It has always been the priest who offers the sacrifice, even in Old Testament times. It is through the priest, through the Power of the Holy Spirit and through the words of Jesus “This is my Body, this is my Blood” that the consecration takes place.


#5

Look at the prefigurement of the Old Testament: the priests there offered sacrifices on behalf of the people, even though, as in the New Testament, there was also an understanding of a “universal priesthood” of all the people. They were a special class with special vestments (which God directed them to wear).

Also, if no priest were necessary, why then couldn’t just ANYONE consecrate the bread and wine? What about Satanists? Couldn’t they consecrate some bread and wine, and then use them for occult purposes? Without Apostolic Succession, what is the requirement then, a college degree in theology?


#6

Writing about 107 A.D., St. Ignatius of Antioch said, “Let that be considered a valid Eucharist which is celebrated by the bishop, or by one whom he appoints.” (Letter to the Smyrnaeans, chap. 8.)


#7

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