VATICAN - Pope: the heart of Christians "is built on the rock" and not "plastered over" in a "cast" of discipline" [AN]

Jesus teaches us that Christians should have a strong heart, a firm heart, a heart built on the rock, that is Christ and then, in the way it goes out, it goes out with prudence: 'In this case, I do this, but…" “When Pius XII freed us from that heavy cross that was the Eucharistic fast”.

More…

“But some of you might remember. You couldn’t even drink a drop of water. Not even that! And to brush your teeth, it had to be done in such a way that you didn’t swallow the water. But I myself as a young boy went to confession for having made the Communion, because I thought a drop of water had gone in. Is it true or no? It’s true. When Pius XII changed the discipline: ‘Ah, heresy! No! He touched the discipline of the Church.’ So many Pharisees were scandalized. So many. Because Pius XII had acted like Jesus: he saw the need of the people. ‘But the poor people, with such warmth.’ These priests who said three Masses, the last at one o’clock, after noon, fasting. The discipline of the Church. And these Pharisees [spoke about] ‘our discipline’ - rigid on the outside, but, as Jesus said of them, ‘rotting in the heart,’ weak, weak to the point of rottenness. Gloomy in the heart.”

I know many who thought the change in the fast wasn’t necessary or prudent, and they certainly weren’t Pharisees.

What’s with the uncharitable slams?

Indeed. Structures would collapse eventually if there were no precision in construction.

Oh man, after all the concubine comments this one really cracked me up!

Whether you like it or not, that was accurate.

The above is not.

Also, interjecting debates discussed in other threads is against forum rules.

Many people struggle with scrupulosity. You can see how such rules would foster it.

I agree. “Da rules” are a means to an end. Case-in-point, the meatless Friday. The purpose of it was to remember the Cross of Christ. Once that fact faded from memory, it became a hollow and fruitless tradition of men, that was punishable by mortal sin.

Meatless Friday is still in effect. The only difference is that you can substitute it for another penance.

In other words (in America) it is completely gone.

It seems that rationalization of sin seems to be more prominent. I don’t see too many refrain from receiving communion.

I’m far too young to have been alive for the original Eucharistic Fast, but I’m personally happy that this particular rule was relaxed. It may mean that I’m soft, but I don’t think I would go to Daily Mass nearly as frequently as I do now. It would also eliminate the ability for priests to have mass at, say, 4:00 or 7:00. The latter mass time, in particular, is the only way I could attend mass that day while working.

That is an entirely different issue.

I don’t know if this is an American thing, but I never understood why everyone feels they have to take the Eucharist every Mass. A good rule of thumb is if you haven’t been in Confession in a reasonable amount of time, are in a state of knowing grevious sin, or your mind incessantly wandered through Mass, you probably shouldn’t take it.

I agree. In fact, there are some Orthodox and other members who make the claim that that communion without confession has become a decadent practice in the West. So maybe more discipline is in order not less. The Pope himself has tried to show the importance of confession by example.

orthodoxengland.org.uk/confessio.htm

Definitely an American thing, when I go to Polish mass less then half of the people take the Eucharist. I was taught to not take it unless I went to confession that month so that dictates whether or not I go. In American masses almost everyone goes.

Not an American thing, a Vatican thing.

From the CCC
1324 The Eucharist is "the source and summit of the Christian life.“the source and summit of the Christian life.”

1389 The Church obliges the faithful to take part in the Divine Liturgy on Sundays and feast days and, prepared by the sacrament of Reconciliation, to receive the Eucharist at least once a year, if possible during the Easter season. **But the Church strongly encourages the faithful to receive the holy Eucharist on Sundays and feast days, or more often still, even daily. **

and Eucharisticum Mysterium

  1. The Nature of Active Participation in the Mass

It should be made clear that all who gather for the Eucharist constitute that holy people which, together with the ministers, plays its part in the sacred action. It is indeed the priest alone, who, acting in the person of Christ, consecrates the bread and wine, but the role of the faithful in the Eucharist is to recall the passion, resurrection and glorification of the Lord, to give thanks to God, and to offer the immaculate Victim not only through the hands of the priest, but also together with him; and finally, by** receiving the Body of the Lord, to perfect that communion with God and among themselves which should be the product of participation in the Sacrifice of the Mass**. For the faithful achieve a more perfect participation in the Mass when, with proper disposition, they receive the Body of the Lord sacramentally in the Mass itself, in obedience to his words, “take and eat.”

  1. The Communion of the Faithful during Mass

Through sacramental Communion the faithful take part more perfectly in the celebration of the Eucharist. It is strongly recommended that they should normally receive it during the Mass and at that point of the celebration which is prescribed by the rite. namely immediately after the Communion of the celebrant.
adoremus.org/eucharisticummysterium.html

“Pius XII freed us from the very heavy cross that was the Eucharistic fast”:

                                           I find that to be an absolutely shocking statement. Orthodox Christians seem to have no problems with fasts, and let's not even go into what Muslims have to do during Ramadan, but our fast from Midnight on was a very heavy cross.

Yeah, it’s a good question - is this discipline revitalizing and deepening my faith and witness to Christ or deadening it into a routine and/or show. If fasting helps you, do it. If it doesn’t, don’t. I once heard someone say that religious life is probably actually the hardest place in the world to keep your faith authentic, rather than routine. (not saying I agree with that, just food for thought)

I hear 'ya, loud and clear! :rolleyes:

I’m more than a little suspicious at the slant of this report because the Church has always said that discipline guides the faithful toward the perfection of the Gospel in their own lives. The spiritual masters have written that discipline helps keeps the heart turned toward God and heightens awareness of His action in our lives. Self-denial is particularly promoted as the channel to practice Christian virtue, which in turn, leads to holiness. The saints themselves have told us there is blessedness in affliction and we are not to seek the easier way. Fasting, prayer, mortification and other penances have always been the pathway to sanctity.

I could be misguided but this is what I drew out of a few parts of the homily.

“Pius XII freed us from the very heavy cross that was the Eucharistic fast. But some of you might remember. You couldn’t even drink a drop of water. Not even that! And to brush your teeth, it had to be done in such a way that you didn’t swallow the water. But I myself as a young boy went to confession for having made the Communion, because I thought a drop of water had gone in. Is it true or no? It’s true. When Pius XII changed the discipline: ‘Ah, heresy! No! He touched the discipline of the Church.’ So many Pharisees were scandalized."

I almost hear a conversion with a sedevacantist in the above text.

“Even our life can become like that, even our life. And sometimes, I confess something to you, when I have seen a Christian, a Christian of that kind, with a weak heart, not firm, not fixed on the rock—Jesus – and with such rigidness on the outside, I ask the Lord: ‘But Lord, throw a banana peel in front of them, so that they will take a good fall, and feel shame that they are sinners, and so encounter You, [and realize] that You are the Saviour."

The pope making such an admission surprised me the most. We all have inclinations against charity and second guess God. God would have the banana peel thrown if he deemed necessary. Concupiscence is a bear.

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