Saturday, May 12, 2012

I will continue to receive on the tongue

This evening a priest used Christ's words about no longer calling His disciples servants but friends, and turned them into the difference between those who receive communion in their hands and those who receive on their tongues.

After introducing the reception issue, he said that those who receive Him in their hands can be likened to those who respond to Christ as His friend; and then he said something that was rather nasty: to paraphrase, he said those who receive Him on their tongues should not feel obligated to change to receiving Him in their hands just because of what he - the priest - said, and that they should continue to receive Him on their tongues as they have been receiving - but those who hear that music in their hearts should respond as Christ's friends. He introduced all of this by stating there are two stages in relation to Christ, and that we need to move beyond the first, which is that of servant, and go to that of friend.

So my reception of Christ on my tongue means I'm immature, and an encumbered servant who can't get past servitude to friendship.

And it was all worded in such a way as to sound like he was saying something absolutely the opposite of the implications in the above sentence. The implications would dawn on one only when gathering up in retrospect the various "structures" of his words, each structure built without finality before going on to another seemingly different structure, but when all of them are brought together, a final statement is made indeed, and all the more deadly for being unspoken. And so softly and gently too.

3 comments:

Belfry Bat said...

Our homilist today, in way of contrast, spoke of how, in the sacrament of ordination a man "becomes an elder, a presbyter; spiritually old, not by being worn out, but in being joined to a priesthood older than that of Melchizedek, the priesthood of the Lamb which is from the foundation of all things". Of course, that doesn't mean a priest is constrained to act or think as an elder. Evidently.

cyurkanin said...

Wow, Paul. First you are immature when it comes to your theology of the body and now you are immature when it comes to the Body of Christ. No soup for you.

owen swain said...

How very sad we have too many priests who do not know the history of their own Church and who lack grace.

Since IE Congress in Quebec City I have received on the tongue. I'd tell the story but I have essentially given up keeping a blog in the Catholic blogosphere.

God bless you Paul and your continued reception as His adopted child.