A new trend: Host in the Post!

Msgr. Charles Pope of the Archdiocese of Washington, DC alerted me to his item on the website of the Archdiocese.  He fisked a piece in the ultra-liberal UK sheet The Guardian.

Msgr. Pope’s entry is called "Host in the Post". 

You’ve gotta know this won’t be good.

The late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus once wrote that the purpose of the Anglican Communion was to make irony redundant.

Oh… the following was written by – I am not making this up – Riazat Butt.

Praise the Lord and post the Host: church’s plan to woo worshippers

In recent years the communion wafer has been made available in a variety of forms – including patterned, wholemeal, crumb-proof and gluten-free – to satisfy the demands of modern life. Soon, altar bread will become even more convenient and accessible with the advent of the "host in the post".

The new service, from the Open Episcopal Church, is aimed at people who either cannot attend Eucharist, through age or ill-health, or those who have drifted away from church.  [Just drop it in the mail.  I wonder if there is return-to-sender postage for the undeliverable wafers.  What about when the mail stacks up when you are on vacation?]

Although the pre-consecrated wafer is free, there will be a charge for postage and packing. Receiving one host costs £2; receiving 500 costs £10.  [It’s almost too much to believe.  Why didn’t we think of this before?  Instead of actually meeting people, just drop a magic cookie in the mail!]

Jonathan Blake, the Open Episcopal Church [not-] bishop who officiated at Jade Goody’s wedding [?] this year, said the initiative was also designed to reverse the way the church presented itself to people[I think their work is now done!]

"The sense they have to go to places to worship is something their parents did. The churches we work with have got respect for the fact that we’re taking the church to places it hasn’t been before.

"It is a mistake to locate a church as those who gather in a building. There is a large population who have haemorrhaged away from church but regard themselves as committed Christians."  [And hosts in the mail will help.]

He said the organisation was taking "care and concern" over appropriate packaging for the wafer, which is no more than a millimetre thick, to ensure it remained intact on arrival, before adding that anyone – including atheists and even satanists – could avail themselves of the service. [Now get this!] "Jesus did not make these distinctions. He gave himself to anyone and everyone. It makes no difference, the body of Christ is redeeming." [Nooo… I think Jesus mentioned something about dogs and about swine, and, no wait, I think Paul said something about this too.]

News of Blake’s latest innovation did not elicit a response from the Church of England, which, as a rule, does not comment on the internal affairs of other churches. [So, they are not part of the Anglican Communion?]

One of his previous projects was a street mass using language more commonly associated with text messages: "JC said: ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever eats this bread will live 4ever.’" [kewl]

I don’t think we need to care too much about this.  But, it is a sign of the times.

This is a sign of what is going on with religion today.  It is another church, but it is nevertheless a church… treating their sacrament in this manner.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Giovanni says:

    If this was a Catholic Priest I would have certainly questions as to why he would treat the body of our Lord with such disrespect. However it is an episcopelian they are treating their craker like a craker and that is all that it is. So no it does not bother me.

  2. patrick finley says:

    “However it is an episcopelian they are treating their craker like a craker and that is all that it is”

    Amen Brother, You cannot truly have a host, unless you have faculties to Transubstantiate one. They do not, so send the cracker.

    “It is a mistake to locate a church as those who gather in a building”

    The typical remark of someone who has no idea what Holy and Sacred is, evident by his treatment of a Host.

    “News of Blake’s latest innovation did not elicit a response from the Church of England, which, as a rule, does not comment on the internal affairs of other churches. [So, they are not part of the Anglican Communion?]”

    A great example of what’s wrong with the Church of England, and why protestantism fails. YOu have no one to hold you accountible. All can do as they please. A true tribute to morale relativism

    Dont mind me tonight, Allergies are kicking in, grumpiness abound. I dont want sour grapes though :) But the article you posted good father, in so many ways demonstrates why you need authoritative teaching.

  3. Rob Cartusciello says:

    Too crazy to even be part of the Anglican Communion. Sounds like a bunch of folks who are hijacking the name “Episcopal”, the way some folks attempt to hijack “Catholic”.

    Perhaps the “Open Episcopal Church” is to the “Anglican Communion” as the “Independent Catholic Church” is to the “Catholic Church”.

  4. Folks… we are not.. not interested in Anglican bashing.

    I think this has greater significance for what is going on with religion in the public square today.

    Spare us the Anglican bashing.

  5. MargaretMN says:

    Jade Goody=working class single mom and reality tv star who became notorious then found redemption by getting terminal cancer and dying before the cameras. But not before she had a media spectacle wedding. So the bishop participated in that travesty? It doesn’t exactly recommend his judgment.

  6. Seminarian says:

    Five hundred hosts for two pounds sterling! Wow! That’s almost enough daily communions for one-and-a-half years! It makes you wonder: Is this a plan to bring alienated Anglicans back to church…or to keep them away?!!

    What is interesting is that this attitude is very revealing as to how the Anglican ecclesial community views the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist. Would anyone put God in the mailbox? I doubt that the High Anglicans who believe in the Real Presence would agree with this. Perhaps some grace may come out of it though: more conversions to the Catholic Faith? What is happening in the Anglican community is very sad indeed. But maybe it will bring more Anglicans back home to Rome. God can always use an evil to produce a greater good.

  7. Warren says:

    Simony? Competition for Peter Popoff’s “Miracle Manna”?

  8. Kyle says:

    why not just send the “host” through the internet? Open it up and there it is your E-Host and then you can think fuzzy thoughts about you and Jesus.

    Ugh, seriously? How is there anything resembling reverence involved when you just shove something sacred into a envelope? If this is anything besides a joke its a sign that the idea of something being sacred has been removed from the Western Psyche after years under the “tyranny of relativism”. At least it was a protestant church, this time.

  9. Isaac Thorpe says:

    Jonty Blake was kicked out of the Church of England…

    This whole issue was debated on Ship of Fools, got rather heated as some posters took great issue with the “Post the Host,” and had a rather strange and snooty response from the Bishop of the Diocese of Scotland in the Open Episcopal Church, where he attacked certain posters mental faculties and got rather upset at everything and everyone, all posted on Youtube.

    I really do enjoy Jonty’s “Latin Mass,” as it has a certain je ne sais quoi about it haha, especially the pronunciation!

  10. BLC says:

    That’s insanity. I don’t think I have much more to add… there isn’t that much more that could be said!

  11. Just to clarify: the Open Episcopal Church has nothing to do with the Anglican Communion. Blake is one of those numerous episcopi vagantes or ‘wandering bishops’ who has received Holy Orders of dubious authenticity that originate from various nutters associated with the Old Catholics in the nineteenth century. He, like many others, has merely set up his own ‘church’, which probably includes no more than a few hundred worshippers. I have heard of one such ‘bishop’ whose ‘cathedral’ was located in his garage. It is really beyond pathetic.

  12. Toby says:

    I agree with Giovanni – this is a natural consequence of not believing in transubstantiation. If the host is just a memory reminder, why not send it through the mail? To the Protestants, it’s like sending a photo of a loved one. The problem here is language: these hosts shouldn’t be called Eucharistic hosts. They should be called Eucharistic Mementos.

  13. Sorry, my italics ran amok.

  14. JR says:

    “It is another church, but it is nevertheless a church”

    Forgive me, Father, but I thought that we weren’t allowed to call them ‘church’ if they don’t have a valid line of succession (Dominus Iesus)? [I was speaking perhaps a little loosely, though I was careful not to capitalize “church”. We don’t have room for a review of the CDF’s document everytime we mention one of these communities.]

  15. Andrew, medievalist says:

    Damian Thompson posted on this and mentioned that the said “minister” has online videos teaching the receipients of his wafers how to have some sort of celebration themselves. I kid you not, but one of these was a Latin ad orientem something.

  16. Henry Karlson says:

    Two things.

    Even they say, “Although the pre-consecrated wafer is free, there will be a charge for postage and packing.” In other words, even they point out it is not what they would consider the sacrament.


    Why use Jack Chick language?

  17. josephus muris saliensis says:

    Don’t worry, this is NOT a church, nor even an ecclesial community. It is a lone nutter with a good sense of PR and a clever website. And on who knows how to charge. Check out is baptism and marriage fees. Any rite available, even non-christian. I jest not!

    Waste not your time on this, it is quite different to the trend to sacrilege to real hosts stolen form Catholic churches we have seen recently.

  18. Natasha says:

    This idiocy shows the status of Christian religion in the UK. Sure, this ‘church’ is a joke but I’m convinced that most people these days wouldn’t dare challenge its authenticity because that would be considered intolerant. ‘Sacred’ has become a dirty word and having a belief in God that goes beyond some vague ‘there is something out there but I can’t possibly know it’ gets you labeled as a fanatic.
    I’m thinking of moving back home very soon.
    End of rant.

  19. Dino says:

    Could this go hand-in-hand with drive-in confessions? You remember, “toot and tell, or go to hell.”

  20. RedShirt says:

    Sadly, although I understand Blake is little more than a ‘lone nutter’ – although his ‘Church’ has a few members and other bishops, he does appear to have valid episcopal orders via an Old Catholic line (he was priested by the Church of England, but left).

    Worryingly this means if he uses the right form, he can validly make his postal hosts into the body, blood, soul and divinity of Our Lord. Very worrying.

  21. Fr J says:

    Careful folks… expand your sense of charity here… (+)Johnathon Blake is certainly “episcopi vagantes” but he did successfully prove the “validity” of his Orders in an English Court of Law… The Judge considering himself incapable/unqualified of making a judgement on the (considerable) evidence presented by Mr (+)Blake (Succession lists) in the matter when the former was accused of misrepresentation.

    Mr (+)Blake is a former CofE Cleric who then involved himself with “episcopi vagantes” (proper in this case, i.e. without any ecclesial recognition from any “recognised” Church/ecclesial community, especially the Holy See) and got himself consecrated (by a theosophical branch of the so-called “Liberal Old Catholics” with an Anglican Succession thrown in). He has no relationship therefore with any Anglican/Episcopal Church whether “Continuing” or in communion with Canterbury.

    However, it is obvious to any real Catholic (Orders aside) that he is most definitely NOT orthodox but utterly apostate with no sense of the Catholic Faith whatsoever, aside from a penchant for the “externals”. This recent pronouncement of his follows in a long line of similar goofy acts that expose the man for what he is – a heretic and almost certainly a sacrilegious blasphemer… for all that, he NEEDS our serious prayer.

  22. @markomalley says:

    My personal favorite is the “street mass” that “Bishop” Blake has on youtube for people who have received their “consecrated host” through http://www.postthehost.net:


    If he was mailing actual consecrated hosts, there would be cause for concern, but as it stands, the only issue is anybody who is actually deceived by this scam. Are there people in the UK who are actually that foolish?

    (I would make some additional really profound comment about this situation at this point in my post, but some things are so ludicrous as to not warrant that treatment)

  23. Fenton says:

    I’ve thought the act of EMs bringing the Blessed Sacrament up to the choir loft (so our alley cats can carry on uninterrupted) tacky, but this is just downright humorous…it’s along the same line of Protestants getting their Sunday “obligation” (tongue in check mind you) by tuning in to the latest “Tele-heretic”, and tithing to the personality’s yacht fund…

    Oh well. I suppose the next step is have computer-based church, where folks can log their “Avatar” in, “attend” service, have some electronic chips and wine, and enjoy the rest of the day…

  24. Phil (NL) says:

    Andrew, that post by Damina Thompson you refer to can be found here: http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/damian_thompson/blog/2009/05/25/post_the_host_bishop_who_blessed_jade_goodys_wedding_offers_consecrated_wafers_by_mail

    Actually, there was quite a bit of discussion over there regarding the validity of this nutcase’s orders and consacrations. The waters are somewhat muddied by the fact he apparantly has some Old Catholic connections in his orders.

    Another thing: according to Damian this figure managed to get thrown out of the anglican church (which presumably takes quite a bit of effort), so strictly speaking anglican bashing isn’t a danger here.

    There’s enough luncacy going around in this story that I trust that somewhere something goes ‘wrong’ and he’s just mailing wafers, but nonetheless it remains extremely disturbing.

  25. josephus muris saliensis says:

    Redshirt, FrJ,

    There is no question that he is validly ordained priest, any more than any other anglican minster, Roma locuta est.

    As to his Episcopal ordination: Firstly, It is impossible to consecrate Bishop a man who is not already a priest. As with rabbits, it just doesn’t work. This is really argument enough.

    Secondly, however valid the succession, indeed even the orders of the consecrator, ordination requires a correct intention to ordain a bishop, within the Tradition of the Church, and in unity with Christ’s Church. Clearly, in the case of such a man, the intention was manifestly absent, why else would one be acting under such separated circumstances? Thus there is can be no ordination here.

    There is NO similarly with the FSPX ordinations, none whatever. Equally, he is not even in the position of High Anglicans who seek apostolic succession through the Old Catholics, in the mistaken but genuine belief that they are ordained within the “catholic” tradition. This man chose to be made a bishop OUTSIDE THE CHURCH, even outside the community of his “priesthood”! QED.

    Pray for those poor people, such as Miss Goody, who are duped.

  26. Aelric says:

    I do not believe that anything serious can be said regarding this matter: so …

    I wonder whether they will receive the mail in the hand standing or on the tongue kneeling?

  27. Broadsword says:

    If they still “.. regard themselves as committed Christians”, why include a Host in the post? Perhaps tell them to imagine the Host is there, or imagine they, themselves are at Mass receiving it. And pretend there are only three last things.

  28. Broadsword says:

    Patrick Finley, I know you meant ‘moral relativism’, but ” morale relativism” is very funny.

  29. Magdalene says:

    In our bible study last night a recent convert often relates things she ecperienced in several protestant churches. For ‘communion’ in one church they use the snack goldfish! But, she told us, they use the parmesan flavor so they are white to lok more like bread!

  30. patrick finley says:

    I will just go back to Authoritative teaching. When you get away from the true teaching of the Church, you get things like this. I have often said in the old days, we had the inquisition. It seems much harder to reign in these groups now adays, but again I think God allows them to happen to strengthen the flock. Yes strengthen. It makes us look at ourselves, and gives us a chance to point out whats wrong with ourselves,and most importantly it can humble us.

    We might not “ship” our hosts, but I would bet you can find Roman Catholic churches, and dare I say even Roman Catholic Bishops, who have the same objectifying view of the Body of Christ, present in the most Holy Eucharist. We in this country have communion in the hand…. for instance. Now I know this is perfectly approved by the bishop’s conference, but the only thing I would add, is, are any one of us worthy to Hold Christ in our hand, in our mortal state? Would you in your mortal state be able to put your hands in his wounds? Without questioning the faith of anyone else, I would venture that out of humility one could not. Yet, we have communion in the hand. Hopefully one can see the comparison here.

    The Bishop also mentions the Church not being confined to a building. Again, this is another opportunity for us to look at our selves. What kind of churches in the past 40 years have we built? I use as an example the Cathedral of Christ the light, which is an episcopal seat if I am not mistaken. If we collectively cannot even build fitting houses of worship , then what are we saying about the value of the Space as being sacred? We collectively have also lost the sense of what is holy, and have dragged it down to our own plane, in an effort to not have to lift ourselves up to Him.

    Finally, as someone pointed out this is an excellent time to ask for charity too. Working with evangelicals, as I do,probably the one greatest qualm about and the perception they get about Catholics, is some tend to have a “Holier then thou” attitude. Its important to remember that all of us are on a journey. True, being catholic is us being more on the path, but we have to be careful not to throw stones at people who are on the shoulders, lest they wander back into the woods. we are the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic church, but that doesnt make us Judge Jury and executioner. We can only show the way. Its up to others to follow.

    Please dont misunderstand me, this was neither a bash on communion in the hand, or that one particular Church, I merely use it as an example of how we can examine our own conscious, in these regards. God teaches us through scripture and signs. Its important to be open to both. I see these events as ways of God trying to wake us up, and make us correct those things.

  31. Scott says:

    This may happen ( could already be) in the Catholic Church. I can see a bishop somewhere posting consecrated communion to a group of people in a rural area so that they can have a eucharistic service. I hate the idea but I can see that some people wuld see sense in it. I for one dont but I like to think that I have a faith.

  32. Gail F says:

    One host costs 2 pounds and 500 costs 10 pounds… What sort of homebound person is going to need 500 hosts???? What is ANYONE going to do with 500 hosts? Of course, this is some sort of wacky break-off church, so maybe people will be distributing them to friends or are weddings or something.

  33. chironomo says:

    This sounds like something you would find at the old “Landover Baptist Church” (parody) website where they once had Bibles with plastic pages for their “Scripture in the Shower” series…

    A teacher of mine once commented that you can’t parody Rock music because it is already a parody of itself. I think the same is true for groups such as the “Open Episcopal Church”… you couldn’t come up with a parody of a breakaway church that is as good as the real thing.

  34. Joe says:

    The term ‘pre-consecrated’ is ambiguous – it could mean ‘previously consecrated’ or ‘before being consecrated’.

    Interesting question as to whether the presence of a bishop with valid (or “valid”) orders would make what the Catholic Church calls an ecclesial communion into a Church. I suspect not since there has been at least one prelate of the Anglican Community whose ‘validity’ was ‘proven’, yet Church language is very clear about them.

  35. Jonathan says:

    The Epistle in the 1962 Missal for Corpus Christi could not be more on point “There whosoever shall eat this bread, or drink of the chalice of the Lord unworthily, shall be guilty of the Body and of the Blood of the Lord”.

  36. Dr. Eric says:

    I can’t help wonder if the 500 “hosts” are not for the satanists to buy. :-(

  37. Gail F says:

    Unbelievable. Check out that link to \”Host in the Post\” (it has its own website!) and look at the \”street mass\” section. This is a suggested liturgy for people who order hosts. Here is the prayer for absolution and the response of absolution (you\’re supposed to give it to yourself, I guess):

    Alright God,
    Sorry if we messed up.
    Trying 2 sort things out
    but cummon, give us a break

    Absolution: OK. Hang on in there.

    You could not make this up if you tried! I have been to an actual Episcopal “hip hop mass” and it is only slightly less dopey than that.

    The sad thing is that I think Fr. Z is right, there is a widespread loss of understanding about the Eucharist in the West. The nutty Open Episcopal Church is just an extreme example. I have even heard Catholic leaders in my archdiocese worry that there is a returning “realism” among Catholics that misunderstands the Eucharist by putting too much emphasis on it! They are worried about too much emphasis on the Eucharist, when the problem is exactly the opposite. Many people think the Eucharist is the body and blood of Christ only in some abstract, metaphysical sense that can be “experienced” by their abstract, metaphysical “spiritual” selves. That’s a heresy.

  38. Ken says:

    With all due respect, is this really too far off from Aunt Bertha tossing a ciborium in her Prius and distributing hosts into the hands of Catholics around her community, as assigned by her pastor?

    This is part of a much larger problem of a complete breakdown in communion regulations. Remember this less than 50 years ago?

    Thankfully Pope Benedict XVI has taken a major step toward restoring tradition and respect by the way he distributes communion. But it needs to apply to more than just him and 20 communicants every once in a while. Until communion regulations are restored by the Vatican, bishops and clergy of the Catholic Church, this chaos will only get worse.

  39. Rev'd William says:

    Hi Folks,

    A couple of things here – can we differentiate between Roman Catholicism and Catholicism, there seems to be much confusion.

    Secondly; from what I have read this does seem a genuine attempt at outreach and if folks who are not part of the Roman see find it brings people closer to Jesus then thats fine by me!

    I have to further add that the Roman Catholic Church does not have a monopoly on the Holy Spirit.

    As to his validity as a Priest and then Bishop – this polemic will never fully be answered but his ordination stemming from the ‘Old Catholic Church’ and Utrecht does seem to have credibility.

    After all, and this may sound woolly, if it genuinely brings comfort to someone and someone feels closer to Christ, with all the hate in the world, should we not celebrate?
    With regards..
    Rev’d William

  40. Kimberly says:

    I agree with a lot of you about “it” being just a piece of bread. But, the problem I see is that some misguided Catholic will think this is a wonderful idea and start planting this same seed in other’s heads. Novelty seems to be a BIG thing right now.

  41. Hunter says:

    Just to let everyone know, the Open Episcopal Church has female clergy. At one point, their “Archbishop” or “Presiding Bishop” (whatever they call them) was Dr. Elizabeth Stuart, who has since left the OEC to become head of the Liberal Catholic Church International. One can find a picture of her here: http://antiquam.files.wordpress.com/2008/07/stuart.jpg. Funny, one usually gets excited when you see pontifical gloves…

  42. Toby says:

    @Henry Karlson

    Whether they consider them ‘pre-consecrated’ or not, do you think Catholics would do the same thing? Of course not, for the reasons I mentioned earlier.

  43. Jayna says:

    “It is a mistake to locate a church as those who gather in a building. There is a large population who have haemorrhaged away from church but regard themselves as committed Christians.”

    I’m not sure how committed they can be if they can’t find time to spend an hour and a half (at most) in a building once a week. This is really what I see as the problem with religion today – it’s all too easy. Sin? Do you think what you did is wrong? No? Well, alright, you’ve done nothing wrong then. What’s that? Don’t believe in the Assumption? Meh, most Catholics don’t know or don’t care anyway, so don’t you worry yourself about it. It’s like they’re desperate to keep people in the faith, so they dumb down everything so no one feels as though they have to put any effort into it. Hmm…sounds like the public school system now that I think about it.

    (By the way – that “don’t know or don’t care” line is a direct quote from a catechist to a potential convert in an RCIA Inquiry class. I can’t make this stuff up.)

  44. Rev'd William says:

    Just to reply to Hunter.

    With respect to female clergy – in the first century all the doctors and lawyers were male too, as well as all the Priests, thankfully we seem to have move on! [If you are suggested that we have “moved on” in the sense that we can ordain women as priests, then you are entirely deceived and deceiving. This was not a merely cultural bound practice. The Church has no authority to ordain women or to change the unbroken tradition of the Church. This is infallibly held by the Church and Catholics are bound to submit to this teaching.]

    With regards

  45. Rev'd William says:

    And in reply to Henry Karson

    Whilst it can never to proven; many people know it to be true that the ROMAN Catholic Church has been sending consecrated ‘Hosts’, albeit in secret, to non-Christian countries for years, just like the Anglican Church has been sneaking Bibles into Non-Christian countries for years. [Gratis asseritur gratis negatur.]

  46. Hunter says:

    Rev’d William,

    Yes, thank goodness groups such as these have “moved on” and adopted female clergy – we now no longer have to worry about their Orders or whether or not these hosts are validly consecrated or not. If their outright embracing of theosophical beliefs and such wasn’t enough, we luckily relied on their bishopesses certainly snuffed out any remaining Succession validity.

  47. Veritas says:

    The gentleman concerned is an episcopus vagans in no way connected with the Church of England or the Anglican Communion. These episcopi vagantes have among them a wide spectrum of belief ranging from almost atheism to extreme papalism, almost like the C of E with Don Cupitt and Fr Hunwick ,or indeed the Catholic Church with Hans Kung and Bishop Fellay.

  48. Rev'd William says:

    Hi again all,
    Dear Henry and Hunter

    A lone voice on a fundamentalist Roman Catholic blog [Okayyyy… I don’t have time for this. You’re gone.] – don’t you all get bored criticising other Christian denominations?

    As mentioned above; with all the hate in the world why criticise – ‘builds not destroyers be…..’

    What genuinely surprises me here is the anger some of you have towards your fellow Christian (whether you feel his ordination ‘valid’ or not)

    When I read the scriptures I see pass inter-denominational polemic and hope that as Christians we can all share in the one body, I have shared Mass with Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Methodist and free Churches….no one has the monopoly.

    Forget the Latin ( its not that clever – I hold 3 degrees) rather chill out a little and remember that above all you’re a Christian, we are all Christians..

    Sent with humour and regards as always..

  49. “You are Peter, and Upon this Rock I will build my church”

    Jesus Christ .

    Oh, and in case anyone is wondering “what rock” peter comes from petra, meaning “Rock”.

    Whether people like Rome or not, that is the heart of the church, in the chair of the Pope, whomever HE may be at any given time.

    Protestants like to thump “Sola Scriptura” .. How much more can you get?

    Also another tid bit…. The scriptures themselves tell us WHO and what SEX should be ordained, very clearly in Paul’s epistles. Again, if we are following everything that is in scripture, why is this difficult to grasp?

    He also said “Do this in Memory of me”. The memory recreates, and forgive the crudeness, a sit down meal, not a delivery service.

  50. Ben C. says:

    The Methodists have been doing this for centuries. What’s the big deal?

  51. Joan Ellen says:

    Rev’d William…God is a God of order. If one doubts that they have only to see the sun come up every 24 hours, or that what goes up must come down. The Church, as the Body of Christ, must have order. We can’t have it this way and that way too. If we just do, as Fr. Z says, what the Church teaches…we experience peace and joy. And, yet, there is plenty of leeway for our individual selves.

    The common Catholic prayers – the Apostle’s Creed, the Our Father, the Hail Mary, and the Glory Be, go along way in helping us to increase our understanding, truly a gift of the Holy Spirit. When we pray those prayers together, at those moments, we are on our way to being one as Jesus asks.

    So, for peace and joy, increased understanding, and thinking, saying, and doing as the Church thinks, says, and does helps us to be one as Jesus asks.

    I invite you, no ask you, to pray those prayers with us. If you begin with the Our Father, no problem. It is in the joint effort of prayer that we are truly Christian.

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