Talk:Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist

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Lutherans and Consubstantiation[edit]

Lutheran theologians have rejected this term as implying that the elements of the sacrament are mixed together. Since they believe that the body and blood of Christ and the bread and wine remain separate and distinct in the sacrament, they have rejected the term in favor of the term "Real Presence." --CTSWyneken 12:09, 25 May 2005 (UTC)

I agree with you in part; I have understood that some Lutheran theologians have said that their Eucharistic theology is better described as "ubiquitarianism", with "consubstantiation" being a Roman "sub-category" of "transubstantiation". Having said that, however, most of Christendom describes Lutheran Eucharistic theology, peraps incorrectly, using the term consubstantiation. I would suggest a few things:
  1. Further elucidation on the page for Consubstantiation, which already mentions your concerns;
  2. Maintaining the consubstantiation reference regarding Lutheran theology on this page, while pointing out that Lutherans don't utilize the term, but it is utilized by others when they speak about Lutheran Eucharistic theology; and,
  3. Further elucidation on the page for Eucharist, which, again, already mentions your concerns.
Just some thoughts! KHM03 12:17, 25 May 2005 (UTC)

Differences of views need mention[edit]

Edit prior to User:CTSWyneken, tried to provide summary. This was removed. I believe it is useful to lead in discussion. May be possible to better present intro, and tie it into article. Removal of reference to consubstantiation (even if not a term used by Lutherans) and absence would not help readers Paul foord 03:25, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Restoration movement[edit]

Why is Real Presence in the category for Restoration movement, and why does it mention the Disciples of Christ? I don't believe these groups affirm Real Presence; aren't they memorialists? I could be wrong. KHM03 12:09, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Earlier edit indicated that they did not ascribe to real presence, removed at same time as consubstantiation. Paul foord 12:31, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

If they do not ascribe to this belief, why are they listed here? KHM03 12:38, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Their Eucharistic theology is stated as being bible based. However, there is a sense of reaction amongst all memorialists, to perceived/actual abuses they observed amongst those having real presence beliefs. Possibly this needs to be stated but the range of perspectives from 0% - 100% are relevant to the topic. Paul foord 12:59, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Relevant to the topic, perhaps, but should "Real Presence" be listed under the category "Restoration movement", which by and large rejects "real presence"? "Memorialism", sure..."Lord's Supper", yes. But "Real Presence"? I don't think so.

Having said that, there certainly could be a subsection to "Real Presence" which mentions the fact that some Christian traditions reject the idea, and a bit as to why...though detailed discussions as to their own Eucharistic theologies are best presented under Eucharist, Lord's Supper, Holy Communion, Memorialism, or something like that. KHM03 13:23, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)


Three things got changed in my edit.

1. "ascribe to this doctrine", of course, should have read, "subscribe to this doctrine".

2. I sectioned off the Reformed view, which does affirm the Real Presence, but in a very different manner from the ALCOMeths (Anglican, Lutheran Catholic, Orthodox, Methodist; and yes, I chose that acronym deliberately  : D ). It deserves its own section, because lumping it with the Baptistic view conflates the two, and they are quite different. I couldn't get the opening of the section to work properly, though, so if anyone gets a brainwave on how to make it happen, please do. The major problem is that, AFAIK, all holders of this view are Reformed, but not all the Reformed hold this view.

3. I noted that the "non-presence" view is called Zwinglian, after Zwingli. Oddly, the Wiki article on Zwingli doesn't note his (at the time, unique) views on the Sacraments. I also noted that this view is commonly associated with Baptists and some Reformed churches.

Wooster 14:39, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)

See The sacraments in Christian Theology: An Introduction, Alister E. McGrath, 3rd edition and On Zwingli Paul foord 15:45, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)


"The majority of churches require that ordained clergy consecrate the elements. Some groups, such as the Disciples of Christ-Christian Churches allow lay people to consecrate the elements." I'm not sure, but I think the idea of "consecrating" the elements might be foreign to Disciples/Church of Christ. - Rlvaughn 4 July 2005 20:16 (UTC)

How's that? Re-titled, because it's actually dealing with the concept of consecration and the action of distribution (potential category confusion?) and padded with a bit more detail. Deliberately left the first paragraph vague because I suspect Lutherans and Anglicans might fit in there, at least some of them. Wooster 5 July 2005 16:16 (UTC)

Rlvaughn is right, "consecration" isn't an idea the DOC officially promotes. From The Disciples Official Site:

Traditionally the Disciples of Christ have been hesitant to speak of the Lord's Supper as a sacrament. They believed that some who regarded the Lord's Supper as a sacrament attributed supernatural powers to the elements of bread and wine. It may be true that Jesus said that "he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life (John 6:54)," but Jesus often spoke in lively metaphor. The meaning for us is expanded when we understand that Jesus spoke in these symbolic terms.

Although impatient with theological conjectures explaining how communion elements become Christ's body, there has been little doubt among Disciples as to the reality of the living Christ's presence among those who share in the Lord's Supper. The Lord makes himself known to persons in a variety of circumstances. Characteristically he is known in the sharing together of the Lord's Supper. If a sacrament is, as some say, "an outward and visible sign of the Lord's invisible grace," Disciples have no particular problem with speaking of the Lord's Supper as a sacrament.

DOC offers a wide latitude for individuals to decide what they believe for themselves: "Disciples are called together around one essential of faith: belief in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Persons are free to follow their consciences guided by the Bible, the Holy Spirit study and prayer, and are expected to extend that freedom to others." Some DOC'ers believe in transubstantion, consubstantiation, "nosubstantiation," and a variety of positions in between, and that's exactly how the DOC wants it to be. Call it a "pillar of the faith."

Also, I changed the link in the article to point to the DOC article rather than restoration movement, and to reflect the standard nomenclature Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). -- Essjay · Talk July 5, 2005 18:50 (UTC)

I just fact-checked (and boy, did it take time) and Lutherans happily use the word consecration *and* call their ministers pastors. Well, the Germans. Scandies call them priests. I never knew that, so just in case anyone else was wondering (like I did) why the word "pastor" was snuck into that paragraph, that's why. Wooster 8 July 2005 16:56 (UTC)


Presidency is a concept used by DOC, relevant to differentiate betw consecrating & distr generally Paul foord 7 July 2005 12:01 (UTC)

Inconsistency and overlap: a proposal[edit]

I'm thinking that, a template needs to be made which contains very brief descriptions of the various views: probably, one for each view. This could be inserted into each article where these descriptions are called for (they are in several articles). Using templates for the repeated material would force consistency of terminology and explanation. If we have one template for each view, then we could also expand within a section, if called for in that particular article. Mkmcconn (Talk) 08:18, 16 July 2005 (UTC)

I like the banner-style template for Eucharist; but I think that for this particular issue - especially because it is so useful in different contexts to explain distinctions in traditions - this other approach might be more productive. This article would be the logical base for the project. Is there support for trying it, to see what you think? Mkmcconn (Talk) 08:18, 16 July 2005 (UTC)

Do you mean something to the effect of a template that would be inserted into the main article text and would appear to the reader as article text? If so, while a good idea, it's prohibited by Wikipedia policy: Templates should not masquerade as article content in the main article namespace; instead, place the text directly into the article. -- Essjay · Talk 08:43, July 16, 2005 (UTC)
Thanks for saying it's a good idea. That makes me feel better - but I should look at those policie more often. Anyway, the content of these several articles needs to be brought into more full, if not exact, agreement, I think. Mkmcconn (Talk) 08:52, 16 July 2005 (UTC)
I think it's an inherrent trait of the wiki system: With articles everyone can edit, nothing can ever be standardized. We can try, though! -- Essjay · Talk 09:07, July 16, 2005 (UTC)

Headings and tightening[edit]

  • Each view matches a tradition, so both being in the heading has a logic to it, whether RC-transubstantiation or transubstantiation-RC is something I'm not sure about
  • Calvinistic and Zwinglian traditions are both Reformed, I think there is no simple was to get round this.

Regarding a template, maybe a suggested/consistant structure would be useful. Maybe

  • Summary
    • What
    • Current proponents/Range of views
    • List options
    • Impact
  • Background/History
    • precursors
    • who what where when
    • Biblical rationale
    • Support from tradition
      • Patristic background
    • Other factors
  • Related issues
  • See also

I think these articles are sometimes short on Biblical and Patristic citations.

Use of main template could be useful pointer. Paul foord 14:01, 16 July 2005 (UTC)

I think we should utilize the Eucharist template and make changes as we deem necessary. Too many tenmplates on one subject defeats the purpose of the templates in the first place. KHM03 20:39, 16 July 2005 (UTC)

Lutheran view[edit]

This was posted by an anonymous editor, under the the Lutheran view. The opinion accords with what has been written elsewhere on WP, and so I incorporated a change based on the strongest objection: Mkmcconn (Talk) 01:00, 28 July 2005 (UTC)

The above quotation, "sometimes even [reserved] as in Catholic practice," has no basis in fact in accordance with the Lutheran Confessions and Symbolics as appear in the Book of Concord of 1580. Confessional ("we believe, teach, and confess") Lutherans that subscribe to the Lutheran Confessions without reservation do not "revear" the elements "as in [Roman] Catholic" (See "Corpus Christi")
If one goes to the online "Christian Cyclopedia" (the online version of what was once known as the "Lutheran Cyclopedia"), you will find the following quotation under Consubstantiation:
"View, falsely charged to Lutheranism, that bread and body form 1 substance (a “3d substance”) in Communion (similarly wine and blood) or that body and blood are present, like bread and wine, in a natural manner. See also Grace, Means of, IV 3." Under the link "Grace, Means of, IV 3," you may search for the word consubstantition and find more. Should you require further definition, the web site FAQ section will respond to your questions.

Revision of Lutheran position[edit]

The Lutheran position on the Lord's Supper is more accurately labeled as Sacramental Union; therefore I propose the following revision of this section to clarify the Lutheran position here:

"Level 2 headline: Lutherans - Sacramental Union" Lutherans believe and teach that the Body and Blood of Christ are "truly and substantially present in, with and under" the consecrated bread and wine. This is defined as "Sacramental Union": When the bread and wine for Holy Communion is used (consecrated, distributed, and received) the body of Christ is united to the consecrated bread and the blood of Christ to the consecrated wine in a substantial, real, though unseen manner. This "Sacramental Union" is unique in theology and philosophy according to Martin Luther and is not analogous to any other "union." This is brought about by Christ's first speaking "the Words of Institution" not by the recitation of these words by the presiding minister of the Lord's Supper. Augsburg Confession, Article 10 states: "Concerning the Lord’s Supper it is taught that the true body and blood of Christ are truly present under the form of bread and wine in the Lord’s Supper and are distributed and received there. Rejected, therefore, is also the contrary teaching," so that communicants eat and drink both, the elements (the consecrated bread and wine) and the body and blood of Christ Himself. For the vast majority of Lutherans, only bread and wine remain after the distribution of the Lord's Supper: the elements are treated with respect, but not "revered" or reserved as in Roman Catholic practice. Lutherans use the terms "Sacramental Union" and "in, with, and under the bread and wine" to distinguish their understanding of the Lord's Supper from that of the Reformed tradition. Lutherans reject the terms "Consubstantiation" and "Impanation" as names for their doctrine because these imply that Christ's body and blood are present in the way food is physically present in normal eating and drinking, a "gross, carnal, and Capernaitic" way.
Please allow some of this to be incorporated into this article, because this is of vital concern to Lutherans.drboisclair 22:29, 24 September 2005 (UTC)
Seeing no objection, go for it. The only caution I'd have is to be sure that the resulting text is as clear as possible to contemporary ears. Wiki articles often are translated to other languages, with resulting fuzziness. The clearer in English, the clearer in these languages. For example, I like what I see so far in the latest edits. Can we find another word for "very" in "very body..." Many of today's folk find the term odd. Perhaps, "true"? --CTSWyneken 11:39, 29 September 2005 (UTC)
I Made that needed change, and I feel that the paragraph that I entered above is too long for the article, which needs to be short and concise as you have pointed out. drboisclair 14:17, 29 September 2005 (UTC)


I've rewritten the Anglican/Episcopalian section at Eucharistic_theologies_contrasted since it was previously quite Anglo-Catholic in POV. While this page on the Real Presence is nowhere near as Anglo-Catholic in POV I think some improvements could be made. (I already have some material to use as I originally wrote much more than ended up on that page).

First of all, lumping Calvinist Anglicans (who believe in the Spiritual Presence) together with those who believe in the bodily presence of Christ and calling them both a belief in the "Real Presence" is a bit misleading. If you asked most Calvinsit Anglicans what they believed they would strongly DENY belief in the "Real Presence" but also uphold Christ's Spiritual Presence -- not in the elements but with his people when they "feed on him in [their] heart[s] by faith with thanksgiving". I don't think the "Spiritual Presence" view can fairly be categorised as "Real Presence". But nor is it a complete denial of Christ's presence. The position is fairly nuanced and needs to be explained a bit better.

Secondly, stating that Anglicans generally believe in the Real Presence is highly contentious. I'm not sure how small your small minority of dissentiants is (or whether indeed it is a minority at all). It all depends on where you're coming from. If you inhabit largely High Church circles (eg ECUSA) then it will seem like an almost non-existent minority of intransigent Puritans who would be better served by leaving Anglicanism and joining the Presbyterians etc :-) If you inhabit largely Low Church Circles (eg Diocese of Sydney -- numerically by far and away the largest Diocese in Australia where estimates are that Sydney has more Sunday church attenders than all other Australian dioceses combined; or most of the Church of Ireland or large chunks of the C of E etc etc) the situation is reversed and those who believe in the Real Presence are in the minority and would be better served by going and joining Rome :-) So unless you have some statistics to back you up I think that's a little POV to say that Anglicans generally believe in the Real Presence. It all depends where you're coming from, not to mention what you mean by "Real Presence".

Thirdly, stating that Anglicans officially believe in the Real Presence begs the question. These Low-Church deniers of the Real Presence would argue very strongly that Anglicanism officially rejects belief in the Real Presence and teaches that belief in the Real Presence is idolatrous. So this requires us to look very hard at (i) what we mean by the "Real Presence" and (ii) the official Anglican doctrinal standards. The position of ECUSA might make things hard. In most places (despite liturgical revision) the official doctrinal standards remain the BCP 1662 and the 39 Articles of 1562. ECUSA has adopted modified forms which don't just serve as alternate liturgy but which also serve as doctrinal standards. Hopefully these don't change anything of substance -- but who knows. ECUSA has now officially called the Holy Communion/ Lord's Supper (the two 1662 terms) the "Holy Eucharist" and (as far as I know) declared it as the central aspect of Episcopalian worship! This would horrify many Low-Church Anglicans who would see this as popish superstition infiltrating a Reformed Church.

If I (Anglican Church of Australia but currently in England and attending a C of E) wanted to explain what Anglicans officially believe I would have to exegete the BCP 1662 and the 39 Articles of 1562. And it is far from clear cut that Anglicans officially believe in the Real Presence. This is very controversial as Low Church and High Church Anglicans interpret them very differently.

I would be happy to outline the relevant bits of the BCP 1662 and the 39 Articles 1562 and give the various lines of argument both for and against any official belief in the Real Presence. But would this satisfy an ECUSA Anglican? I think it would become too unwieldy to have to deal with more than one set of doctrinal standards.

Finally, reference to the Windsor Statement/ ARCIC is quite POV. No mention is made of the fact that (a) this does not represent any official doctrinal position of Anglicanism; only the BCP and the 39 Articles do; (b) ARCIC is inhabited by Anglo-Catholics (who therefore don't speak for Anglicanism as a whole); most Low-Church Anglicans disagree strongly with pretty much everything ARCIC has ever said.

What do people think? Apodeictic 11:13, 24 March 2006 (UTC)

One non-Anglican thinks: Go ahead. Lima 12:41, 24 March 2006 (UTC)

I've done it; but it is about two-and-a-half-times as long as the current section. This doesn't surprse me since I'm outlining at least two different views of Anglicanism (pro-Real Presence and Anti-Real Presence not to mention the variations on a theme). Part of me thinks this Intra-denominational differences of opinion should have its own space on Wiki, so as not to overload other pages (such as this one) which aim to compare and contrast Inter-denominational differences of opinion. But the divisions within Anglicanism are arguably very unique and unlike divisions within other denominations. You can't just say "Anglicanism adheres to belief in the Real Presence" or "Anglicanism rejects belief in the Real Presence". Just about everything is disputed within Anglicanism and you will be able to find respectable voices (not just the "lunatic fringe" as some Wiki pages would seem to suggest about some Anglican viewpoints) for every position. You have people akin to the most radically conservative non-Conformist (Independent) Evangelicals at one end of the spectrum, ultra-ritualist, traditionalist and conservative Catholics at the other end of the spectrum and everyone else (including the most liberal theological liberals) in between -- all in a single denomination. If you are to do justice in comparing Anglicans with other denominations you need to know something (in broad outline at least) about the major internal divisions within Anglicanism. Arguably belief in or rejection of the Real Presence is one of those. What to do??? Can I create an Anglican Real Presence Page on Wikipedia? Or will that irk the organisational types who think that every denominational view on the Real Presence can and should be covered on a single page such as this one? Can we have a section on this page (not really any bigger than the current Anglican section) that links to another page with each viewpoint's arguments? Are people looking at Wikipedia interested in a presentation of the various arguments about the proper interpretation of Anglican doctrinal standards (so that they can evaluate the strength of these arguments for themselves) or are they happy just to know that differences of opinion exist and remain forever blissfully ignorant of the merits of the arguments behind these differences of opinion? Apodeictic 13:01, 25 March 2006 (UTC)

I would be very interested in reading a clear exposition of Anglican teaching (not just the views of some individual Anglicans); and I regret that nobody else has given any encouragement to Apodeictic's plan. Indeed, on another page, someone has made a negative comment. It is reported that, during the First World War, when an English recruit, on being asked his religion, said: "I have no religious convictions whatsoever," the sergeant overseeing the paper work responded: "That means Church of England, m'lad." I suppose this really meant that recruits who failed to specify another religion were classified as belonging to the established Church. But it has been cited as an indication of the broadness (or vagueness?) of Anglican belief. Parts of Apodeictic's text above might perhaps also be cited as a similar indication. Could some Anglican please write and include in one or other of the two Wikipedia articles Anglicanism and Anglican Communion (each of which curiously ignores the existence of the other - shouldn't they be merged?) a section on present-day Anglican belief, and on whether Anglican formularies count for anything at all? I realize this may sound cynical, but I sincerely do not mean it that way. I am just curious. Lima 14:54, 25 March 2006 (UTC)
I removed 2 paragraphs which don't pertain directly to the issue of "real presence", in an effort to keep the section a bit more concise and focused. KHM03 (talk) 13:10, 25 March 2006 (UTC)
Lima: there is an official Anglican position on this -- and most other doctrinal disputes. In answer to the question "What is the official position of the [insert particular Anglican church here; eg Church of Ireland] on the doctrine of the Real Presence?" The answer is a very clear "That (provided it is not contradicted by Scripture) which is found in the 39 Articles and the Book of Common Prayer of [insert particular Anglican Church here]." There's your answer. Of course that doesn't satisfy because anyone can see the huge amount of diversity in Anglican belief and praxis. Why is there so much diversity within Anglicaism when there is an official doctrinal standard? Your WWI remark was obviously meant in jest but there is more than a grain of truth in it. Anglican diversity, therefore, raises two important questions. (1) Are the Anglican doctrinal standards genuinely ambiguous leading to legitimate difference of opinion? (2) Or are the standards clear but Anglicans nonetheless disregard them in practice, holding views contrary to them? In other words: does this diversity of opinion arise (1) because of or (2) in spite of the doctrinal standards?
That is why I wanted to outline (non-POV of course) the major positions within Anglicanism with references to the BCP and 39 Articles so that the reader might be able to judge for him/herself whether these vast differences within Anglicanism arise from (1) or (2). My personal view is that there are some minor differences attributable to (1) but most of the big ones are attributable to (2). In other words, it is my opinion (POV of course!) that many views held within Anglicanism (even by priests, bishops and theologians) are quite contrary to official Anglian belief. Actually it's not so POV because the courts (civil courts -- not church courts dominated by church party politics) have been called on to interpret Anglican doctrine. The courts didn't throw their hands up in the air and say that the formularies are so ambiguous that Anglicans can believe whatever they want. They have taken a line just as they would interpret a statute passed by a parliament. There is an ascertainable meaning there.
It might even be that the beliefs of the majority of Anglicans in any one area at any given time are contrary to official Anglican beliefs (those taught in the 39 Articles and the BCP). (But that's getting into the realm of POV/ controversy!) I personally think that if you read the Anglican doctrinal standards Anglicanism does have a firm position on the Real Presence and that the difference of opinion over the Real Presence arises out of people ignoring or (deliberately?) misconstruing the doctrinal standards (the second issue) rather than genuine ambiguity (the first issue). But that's my personal view. Other Anglicans would disagree which means you will have to read the relevant bits of the BCP and the 39 Articles for yourself. There is no magisterium in Anglicanism that gives official pronouncements on Anglican belief and practice. The Archbishop of Canterbury can't speak for Anglicanism. ARCIC (an Anglican-Roman Catholic dialogue group) can't (hence my objection here and elsewhere to blanket statements about ARCIC pronouncements as if they represented any official Anglican position). The Church Society (an Anglican Evangelical lobby group) can't. The Church Union (an Anglo-Catholic lobby group) can't. Only the Bible, the BCP and the 39 Articles can.
Your question on whether Anglican formularies count for anything at all gets to the very heart of the matter. In theory they count immensely since (in second place to the Scriptures which are common to all Christian churches of course) they are the sole authoritative source of Anglican doctrine. But in practice among many Anglicans (but not all -- some do still take them seriously) they are not regarded in the slightest. Some Anglicans take pride in the formularies; some are embarrassed by them; while most would have no idea what they say. Well those sweeping remarks need some clarification. I can't speak for all Anglican churches (particularly ECUSA which seems to do things a bit differently from the rest of the world), but in most Anglican churches throughout the world in order to be ordained as a priest (but maybe as a deacon too; I'm not sure on the position with deacons) you need to assent to the 39 Articles. In practice many priests/ordinands don't think very highly of them at all and see assenting to them as a mere formality to ordination. Some ordinands/ priests, however, do take assenting to them very seriously. As far as I know, there is nothing requring lay Anglicans to believe the theology of the Anglican formularies.
So like you Lima: I think there should be something on Wiki explaining Anglican attitudes to the Anglican formularies. In theory they are binding on clergy but in practice additudes of the Anglican clergy to them vary immensely. Many Anglican clergy disregard them completely; others take them very seriously. Your WWI quip is basically true -- even for the clergy! Apodeictic 14:11, 26 March 2006 (UTC)

I am indeed grateful to Apodeictic for what to me seems to be a good clear exposition of an unclear subject. The WWI "quip" was in fact what someone who had been a British army chaplain in that war said he had himself witnessed. Since he is dead for some 45 years, I cannot ask him to confirm it. Lima 18:03, 26 March 2006 (UTC)

If there is an official Anglican position, it would have to be from Cranmer. Cranmer says: Christ is really present in the Eucharist. In a real, but "heavenly and spiritual manner" the faithful receive the "self-same" Body and Blood of Christ. See [1]. In the Thirty-Nine Articles, see no. 29 "of the wicked which eat not the Body of Christ in the use of the Lord' Supper: "THE Wicked, and such as be void of a lively faith, although they do carnally and visibly press with their teeth (as Saint Augustine saith) the Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ, yet in no wise are they partakers of Christ: but rather to their condemnation, do eat and drink the sign or Sacrament of so great a thing." Certainly there is in the Communion a range of opinions from transubstantiation to memorialism, but this is Cranmer's formulation. So "officially" a form of Real Presence is taught in Anglicanism, but in practice beliefs vary. Also, the Sydney Diocese is only nominally Anglican (and really is considered "lunatic fringe" by the global communion). Classical Anglicanism simultaneously rejects Roman Catholicism and Protestantism. I certainly agree that an article on Anglican Eucharistic theology is in order. I may get it started myself. Carolynparrishfan 14:20, 3 May 2006 (UTC)

Basically, although low churchmen might argue that Anglicanism officially rejects RP, this argument is wrong. The 39 Articles say "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.". Few Christian groups recognize no form of Real Presence (Baptists and Mennonites don't). Catholics have a very physical understanding of it, and Presbyterians (for example) on the other hand understand it as a "spiritual presence", but neither believes its just a symbol. I'm not denying that some Anglicans believe in memorialism, but they cannot claim to speak "officially" any more than the equally small number of Anglicans who believe in transubstantiation (I was once one of these, but now think more highly of transignification). Carolynparrishfan 16:37, 8 May 2006 (UTC)


I was reading over the article again, and wondered if the word "ubiquity" is still used in Lutheran definitions, to understand "Real Presence". The article does not use this word, which has been a cause of difference between the Calvinist Reformed and the Lutherans. Is the omission an error? — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 01:59, 27 December 2006 (UTC)

Ubiquity is a derogatory characterization of the Lutheran position by the Reformed. As Lutherans we do not use that term to denote our Real Presence doctrine. We do not believe in the omnipresence of Christ's human nature in the manner that Zwingli, Calvin, Beza, et alii call "ubiquity" that Christ's human nature is "locally" extended everywhere like a giant monstrosity. We do believe in the omnipresence of Christ's human nature/body but not in the "local" mode (taking up space, being visible in the way that our bodies do in our mortal state). Because Zwingli, Calvin, Beza, et al. add that distortion to our doctrine when they call it "ubiquity," we do not use it.--Drboisclair 16:19, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
Thank you. I won't attempt to include the word, or try to summarize the concept in the article, since I don't think I correctly understand it, yet. \
I thought that the idea of ubiquity was just what you've said - as Calvin calls it pejoratively (in the insulting passage of the Institutes that you are referring to), a "spectral presence", a "phantasm". Others characterize it even more insultingly: on earth there were two natures, but glorified there is monophysis (a composite unity). But I admit my confusion, and Wikipedia is no place to work through my difficulties. If you perceive the crux of my question, though, and think that clarification would improve the article, I would be grateful. I don't read enough of the Lutheran arguments to be confident of my grasp of the controversy. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 19:29, 27 December 2006 (UTC)
I think that you are bringing up a good point here: the point of Christology, which is related to the doctrine of the Lord's Supper. Lutherans, however, do not base their belief in the Real Presence on the omnipresence or "ubiquity" of Christ's human nature/body but on His words of institution alone: "this is my body," and "this is my blood." When dealing with "polemics" in systematic theology such matters would come up. I think that the concept of "ubiquity" brings up the differing beliefs regarding Christ's incarnation. Lutherans believe in the omnipresence of Christ's human nature. This is related to the doctrine of the Lord's Supper because it involves the presence or absence of His body and blood. Zwingli believed that a human body could only be present in the "local mode" (the way a human body is present here and now in our world), so if Christ's human body is present everywhere, then it must be "locally extended" throughout the universe.--Drboisclair 01:49, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
If this is correct then, a way to contrast Calvin's to Luther's view would be something like this: Calvinists base their view of the words of institution on the Christology of two natures in one person. Lutherans base their view of Christ's glorified nature on the words of the institution. — Mark (Mkmcconn) ** 19:15, 28 December 2006 (UTC)
I would say that Calvin opposed the Lutheran view of the Real Presence because he believed that it conflicted with Christ's ascension. It has to do with what is biblical and rational. You might be touching on the idea here: the Calvinists would interpret the Words of Institution in the light of what they think consistent with their Christology.--Drboisclair 11:06, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

The Vatican is right[edit]

The article makes no mention of eucharistic miracles, where the bread and wine has indeed changed into actual blood and flesh, usually to convince priests in doubt over the truthfulness of church teachings. The miracle of Lanciano is especially famous and has been the subject of medical investigations in the early 1970s. (talk) 17:53, 4 May 2008 (UTC)

Do grown up people really take these theories seriously? Why not a page on what the bodies of faires are "objectively" made of? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:21, 20 August 2008 (UTC)
Because these are approved miracles of the Church, not fairies and other nonsense. If you are not a Christian nor a believer in miracles, then WHY are you even looking at the discussion for this page? --Willthacheerleader18 (talk) 00:36, 14 August 2010 (UTC)
I think what indelicately was trying to convey in response to was that the appelation 'truthfulness' is not really the best word to use here, because the transformation has not been confirmed through the scientific method. In the case of claimed eucharistic miracles, it was decided by an obviously biased source, without an open view second source confirmation, that the bread/wine had been transformed into body/blood. Clearly, that would have to be met with skepticism by even strong believers, as it was simply one person/group's word that comes with an immediate benefit (justification, confirmation, etc) to that person/group making the judgement. If these miracles had occurred, an outside source (medical or laboratory at a minimum) with no ties to the Church, should have been invited in to test and document that the materials had indeed transformed, with a clear chain of custody that starts before the actual transformation. Unless this is done, it is not 'truthfulness' that the transformation has occurred, only that there is a claim of such.--LeyteWolfer (talk) 21:01, 22 February 2013 (UTC)

Ratzinger on Real Presence[edit]

Certain writers have claimed that peritus Joseph Ratzinger wrote a book called Die Sacramentale Begrundung Christliche Existenz in which he criticized traditional beliefs on the real presence. It would be interesting if we could find sources on what his actual beliefs on the subject are. In any event, as Sovereign Pontiff he has strongly promoted a belief in the Real Presence of Jesus. [2] [3] ADM (talk) 04:12, 4 July 2009 (UTC)

Roman Catholic vs. Orthodox Catholic[edit]

The Orthodox Church also lays claim to the title "Catholic Church;" since the fluency or concision of the article cannot seriously be said to be harmed by the inclusion of the informative qualifier "Roman," I think it should stay. Perhaps you could go change them if you at least leave the first one as "Roman Catholic" to avoid ambiguity (you could include a parenthetical 'hereafter referred to as the Catholic Church' or something like that). JALatimer (talk)

In fact, all churches with apostolic succession are part of the Catholic Church, but only some of them recognize the primacy of the Bishop of Rome (the Pope). Saying "Catholic Church" when you mean only a subset of it is both misleading and non-NPOV, so I'd be opposed to the removal of "Roman" even after the first mention. +Angr 07:31, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
Hi Angr - I would have to disagree with you. The Branch Theory is very much a POV position not shared by the vast majority of those it would include in the Catholic Church. However, it seems to me that this concern would only affect the "Roman Catholic and Orthodox" section of the article, since in the Anglican section I would still recommend keeping "Roman" in there. Regards Fralupo (talk) 18:03, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
Hi JALatimer - Given that the only other type of "Catholic" discussed in the article is "Anglo-Catholic", I do not think the "Roman" qualifier is needed outside of the Anglican section. I like your suggestion about identifying all references to "Catholic" as referring to "Roman Catholic" unless otherwise stated. Regards Fralupo (talk) 18:03, 29 May 2010 (UTC)
  • Angr wrote: "Saying "Catholic Church" when you mean only a subset of it is both misleading and non-NPOV"
  • Fralupo wrote: "The Branch Theory is very much a POV position not shared by the vast majority of those it would include in the Catholic Church."

(A) Angr, while I agree with you that, in general, using "Catholic" to denote "Roman Catholic" to the exclusion of all others who lay claim to the word is biased (thats why I brought back "Roman" in my edit), I'm going to have to go with Fralupo on this one: the branch theory itself is POV. Fralupo, I'm glad you like my suggestion. It seems like the best way balance concision and efficiency while keeping the article as free of POV as possible. It also bows a bit to common usage, which seems to me entirely reasonable.

(B) The only problem I see is how the disclaimer itself would read. If put after the very first mention of "Roman Catholic Church", it could say "(hereafter referred to as the 'Catholic Church')". -- JALatimer (talk) 06:55, 30 May 2010 (UTC)

Hi JALatimer - I've gone ahead and taken out the "Romans", along with adding this footnote:
"Hereafter the "Roman Catholic Church" shall be referred to as the "Catholic Church". For other uses see Catholic Church (disambiguation)."
The second sentence allows the the reader to understand the distinctions that you and Angr have raised. If you feel that having the disclaimer as a parenthetical is better, it can be split it in two - keeping the disambiguation references in the footnotes. Best Regards, Fralupo (talk) 23:46, 30 May 2010 (UTC)
Whether the Branch Theory is a minority position or not is irrelevant. The fact remains that the Roman Catholic Church doesn't deny the label "Roman Catholic", so there's no need to push the "Catholic = loyal to the Pope" POV, or introduce an ambiguity that needs to be clarified with a footnote. It's simplest and least non-NPOV to simply say "Roman Catholic" throughout. +Angr 08:54, 31 May 2010 (UTC)
Hi Angr - Several things:
  • I was too quick to implement the with the modification proposed here in the talk page without achieving consensus. For this I apologize.
  • In your opinion would it be POV if we made all of the "Roman" links point to Catholic Church instead of to re-direct pages (like Roman Catholic Church or Roman Catholic) while still retaining the "Roman" in the visible link? That would make those links look like this [Catholic Church|Roman Catholic], etc.
  • After years of debate, the Catholic Church article arrived at a usage convention that is similar to the usage proposed in this talk page. Is that usage NPOV there but POV here?
Best regards, Fralupo (talk) 08:22, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
Per WP:NOTBROKEN we shouldn't write [Catholic Church|Roman Catholic] when Roman Catholic already redirects to Catholic Church. It makes reading the edit window unnecessarily difficult. The article Catholic Church was moved to that name from its original name Roman Catholic Church without the consensus of the community and without a formal requested move; the article name is non-NPOV both there and here and should never have been allowed to remain. +Angr 11:52, 1 June 2010 (UTC)
It's not like a solution is obvious. "Branch theory" is exclusive to a particular branch of Anglicanism. And not every Church in what is actually commonly called "the Catholic Church" is Roman Catholic: the Eastern Catholic Churches (not the Eastern Orthodox) are fully in communion with Rome, but not actually Roman Catholic (nobody calls them so, especially not themselves). If you took into account the terminology every group of Christians prefer, not only would there be no way to refer to the Catholic Church at all, but we couldn't even call any group "Christian" (because there's always some group that doesn't want to call any given other group "Christian"). So, the consensus is usually to go with how people most commonly refer to things, not search for the "most correct". And we all know what people mostly commonly mean by "the Catholic Church" without qualification, and how most people refer to the Churches in communion with Rome. (talk) 09:54, 1 February 2013 (UTC)

Methodist belief[edit]

The article mainly identifies the Eucharistic belief of the United Methodist Church.. so I was wondering if all Methodists beleive the same thing? There are various Methodist denominations and denominations that branched off of methodism, but I do not know much about their beliefs: United Methodist Church, Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, African Methodist Episcopal Church, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, Methodist Church of Great Britain, Methodist Church Ghana, Free Methodist Church, Evangelical Methodist Church, Wesleyan Church, Church of the Nazarene, United Church of Canada, Christ's Sanctified Holy Church, Congregational Methodist Church, Methodist Protestant Church, Primitive Methodist Church, etc.. does anyone know if all Methodist Churches have the same Eucharistic belief as the United Methodist Church? --Willthacheerleader18 (talk) 00:42, 14 August 2010 (UTC)

Merge suggestions for Eucharist-related articles: help and strategy needed[edit]

I think that we need a plan to merge and/or simplify certain sections of Eucharist-related articles. Another editor wrote in 2009 that he thinks they should all be merged.

For more information these ideas, see this discussion on the Eucharistic_theologies_summarised talk page.

Thanks, --Geekdiva (talk) 13:21, 5 April 2011 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived discussion of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

No consensus to move as proposed. Vegaswikian (talk) 23:35, 25 September 2011 (UTC)

Real PresenceReal presenceRelisted. Vegaswikian (talk) 19:21, 23 August 2011 (UTC) In Wikipedia:Manual of Style (capital letters)#Religions, deities, philosophies, doctrines and their adherents it says

"Philosophies, theories, doctrines, and systems of thought do not begin with a capital letter, unless the name derives from a proper noun: lowercase republican refers to a system of political thought; uppercase Republican refers to a specific Republican Party (each party name being a proper noun). Even so, watch for idiom: Platonic ideas, or even Ideas, as a combination of proper nouns, but platonic love. Doctrinal topics or canonical religious ideas that may be traditionally capitalized within a faith are given in lower case in Wikipedia, such as virgin birth (as a common noun), original sin or transubstantiation." (my emphasis)

Accordingly it seems that "real presence" should not be capitalized and the page should be moved to "Real presence". Jojalozzo 20:41, 15 August 2011 (UTC)


Feel free to state your position on the renaming proposal by beginning a new line in this section with *'''Support''' or *'''Oppose''', then sign your comment with ~~~~. Since polling is not a substitute for discussion, please explain your reasons, taking into account Wikipedia's policy on article titles.
  • Oppose. The capitals are useful in the title to indicate that the article is not about just any real presence (such as the presence, real or supposed, in a food of some particular substance), but about the presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Esoglou (talk) 09:59, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
    I understand the desire to make this topic special, but I am not aware of any Wikipedia policy that supports your position. Personal opinion doesn't carry much weight in these decisions. Please tell us what Wikipedia policy we should be factoring in here to use capitalization in this case. Jojalozzo 15:27, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
    Not to make this topic special, only unambiguous and precise. WP:PRECISE gives the example of Red Meat vs. Red meat. Capitalization also best fits most of the criteria mentioned in WP:CRITERIA: recognizability (the most common form in use both in books and generally), naturalness (same reason), precision (already mentioned), and conciseness (with lower-case letters, unambiguity would require something like "real presence of Christ in the Eucharist/eucharist"). As for consistency, the only other criterion mentioned, and the sole criterion to which you are appealing, "Real Presence" is consistent with Wikipedia use of "Eucharist", which in turn is consistent with the spelling software of Microsoft Word, WordPerfect, etc. (unless they have changed recently). Esoglou (talk) 16:55, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
    I interpret WP:CRITERIA to refer to the wording of a title not its capitalization - I don't see where the policy on capitalization references CRITERIA. WP:PRECISION would make sense here if there were other articles between which we needed to make distinctions. I am not seeing policy prescribing the use of dictionaries for determining capitalization. The governing policy is to minimize its use in general, not to rely on usage (which makes it very difficult to implement consistently and without dispute because people are used to and invested in capitalizing things), and specifically to use lower case for religious doctrine and concepts. As I understand it Eucharist is a rite, not doctrine, whereas Real Presence is a belief or concept, i.e. doctrine.
    While I'm not advocating for resolving this from usage, this World Council of Churches document capitalizes neither eucharist nor real presence. Jojalozzo 18:15, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
    I came back to put in a not very serious thought that came to me, namely that the capitalization of "God", or rather the corresponding Russian word, was, I understand, forbidden by the Soviet authorities, and most people distinguish between "God" and "god", as most people distinguish between the "Real Presence" (a particular presence of a particular person in a particular way) and a merely generic "real presence". But I see you responded to my first comment. I will make just one more comment on your response and will not revisit the matter afterwards. The English language does have capitalization and does sometimes use it to distinguish meanings, as the example in WP:PRECISE shows. The meanings are distinct, whether Wikipedia has articles on both meanings or not. Even if there were no red meat article, you couldn't use that name for the Red Meat article. And since in cases like "Real Presence"/"real presence" there is a difference in meaning between the two English terms, WP:CRITERIA, pace tua, does apply here. Esoglou (talk) 18:55, 17 August 2011 (UTC)
  • If it will help to settle this, I would tend to oppose the change - sources seem to capitalize this phrase at least as often as not, and capitalizing it seems to serve the useful purpose of indicating that it's not "real presence" in general that this article is about (though in practice it's unlikely that anyone would think it was). Guidelines are not law, and this guideline even implies that we should defer to idiom rather than impose our own style in such matters.--Kotniski (talk) 09:55, 22 September 2011 (UTC)
I interpret this argument (as well as Esoglou's) as an appeal for an exception to the guidelines rather than an explanation on how they apply in this case. Jojalozzo 13:25, 22 September 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I suppose. I don't feel that strongly either way, in fact. If we did Real presence of Jesus or Real presence of Christ, that might be better still (at least in terms of clarity).--Kotniski (talk) 13:38, 22 September 2011 (UTC)
I think it is rather a question of interpretations of the guidelines and how they, taken in their totality, apply to this concrete case. Esoglou (talk) 13:47, 22 September 2011 (UTC)


I do not understand how the policy:
"Doctrinal topics or canonical religious ideas that may be traditionally capitalized within a faith are given in lower case in Wikipedia, such as virgin birth (as a common noun), original sin or transubstantiation."
does not apply here. The policy seems perfectly clear and even has the example of virgin birth which seems somewhat on a par with real presence. How is "real presence" different than "virgin birth" (whose article is titled Virgin birth of Jesus)? What is the basis for an exception in this case? Jojalozzo 03:55, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
And I do not understand how WP:PRECISE, with its example of Red Meat vs. red meat, does not apply here. This article is about the "Real Presence" or the "real presence of Christ in the Eucharist", not about "real presence". If "Virgin birth" was once the title of a Wikipedia article whose title has since been changed to "Virgin birth of Jesus", the change was correct, since that article is not about "virgin birth" (parthenogenesis). Esoglou (talk) 07:38, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
That example from WP:PRECISION does not apply here because Red Meat is the name of a comic strip, a true proper name, so it is capitalized according to the style guide, and red meat is a common noun and not capitalized according to the style guide, so there is no need for disambiguation. Both pages can coexist without extra disambiguation.
There are no other articles with the same spelling that need to coexist with this article so there is no need to disambiguate and even if we did need to disambiguate we couldn't use capitalization because "real presence" a common noun (like "virgin birth").
I have yet to be told of any reason for an exception to the guidelines other than a need to distinguish one use of a common noun from another use. In Wikipedia we make such distinctions without using capital letters - there are ways to do it and rather than harming the article it will enhance it by bringing it into compliance with the project's consistent style.
I have no problem with moving this page to "Real presence of Christ". Jojalozzo 13:22, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
I do think that the distinction between "Real Presence" and "real presence" is indeed in the line of that between a proper name and a descriptive common noun. After all, I feel sure you accept, for instance, "Second World War", and don't insist on "second world war".
"Real presence of Christ" is not specific enough: his presence in, for instance, a group assembled in his name is also considered to be real. Esoglou (talk) 14:51, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
Second World War is not a religious doctrine or idea that is covered by the style guide that applies here.
Capitalizing Real Presence doesn't confer any particular meaning of itself and it's significantly less specific than Kotniski's proposals. Using upper case is a convention for disambiguation but it's not one that is used in Wikipedia.
Let's use "Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist". Jojalozzo 15:50, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
If "Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist" is accepted as title - it is certainly acceptable to me - we can lay aside discussion of your wish to decapitalize, just because, unlike "Second World War", it is a religious term or idea, the specific term "Real Presence". Esoglou (talk) 16:15, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
I agree. This discussion relates only to the title. There needs to be a larger discussion involving most of the Christian (and perhaps other religion-related) articles where capitalization is used to disambiguate profound interpretations of common noun terms from other mundane interpretations but this is not the place.
Shall I close this request and make a new one for moving the page to "Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist" or can we assume it would be uncontroversial based on this discussion? Jojalozzo 17:13, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
As far as I am concerned, you may certainly proceed with the move. But I wonder whether a wait of 24 or perhaps even 48 hours is advisable to see if Kotniski or anybody else has comments. In view of the lack of interest so far, if for no other reason, I don't expect anyone will object. Esoglou (talk) 17:56, 23 September 2011 (UTC)
Good advice - waiting would be prudent and respectful. Thanks for helping work this out. Jojalozzo 18:15, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

Note - The current plan is to move this page to Real presence of Christ in the Eucharist in a couple of days unless someone raises objections. Jojalozzo 18:20, 23 September 2011 (UTC)

That would be fine with me.--Kotniski (talk) 09:49, 24 September 2011 (UTC)
The above discussion is preserved as an archive of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

So the above discussion was closed as no consensus for the original proposal - but what about the latter proposal, do we not seem to have consensus for that?--Kotniski (talk) 09:13, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

Done. Esoglou (talk) 09:43, 26 September 2011 (UTC)

Catholic and orthodox[edit]

"Catholic and Orthodox" as subheading is merely meant to designate Churches practicing "Catholicism". A better title might be found. The previous title suggested that beliefs regarding the Eucharist were universal before the reformation; there were however many sects with differing beliefs that are not covered here. The current title is meant to cover the content found within the subsection in its current form. --Zfish118 (talk) 15:40, 16 December 2014 (UTC)

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