Re: Receiving Holy Communion - Agreement between SOC & RC
- Dear Toms Abaraham,
On the above subject, I may inform you that the agreement between the Roman Catholic Church and the Syrian Orthodox Church regarding Holy Communion is applicable only to the places/remote areas where there is any one of the parish (either belonging to SOC or RC) exists. For example, in India, if we say about North Eastern States, there is no Syrian Orthodox Parish and in such a situation a Jacobite who is working or residing in these States could receive Holy Communion from the RC priest/parish. Likewise, if only a Jacobite parish is available at a particular place in the world and there is no RC parish (chances of this situation is very very less)a Catholic could receive Holy Communion from a Syrian Orthodox/ Jacobite priest. However, the willingness to receive the Holy Qurbana has to be informed to the priest of the parish in advance, i.e., atleast one day prior to the date of the Holy Eucharist.
In Pune, there is a Jacobite Parish. Even otherwise also, all of a sudden nobody can go to any Church for receiving Holy Communion.
The relevant portion of the agreement is reproduced below for your information:
"Our identity in faith, though not yet complete, entitles us to envisage collaboration between our Churches in pastoral care, in situations which nowadays are frequent both because of the dispersion of our faithful throughout the world and because of the precarious conditions of these difficult times. It is not rare, in fact, for our faithful to find access to a priest of their own Church materially or morally impossible. Anxious to meet their needs and with their spiritual benefit in mind, we authorize them in such cases to ask for the Sacraments of Penance, Eucharist and Anointing of the Sick from lawful priests of either of our two sister Churches, when they need them. It would be a logical corollary of collaboration in pastoral care to cooperate in priestly formation and theological education. Bishops are encouraged to promote sharing of facilities for theological education where they judge it to be advisable. While doing this we do not forget that
we must still do all in our power to achieve the full visible communion between the Catholic Church and the Syrian Orthodox Church of Antioch and ceaselessly implore our Lord to grant us that unity which alone will enable us to give to the world a fully unanimous Gospel witness."
Jacob V Joshua, New Delhi
Memb ID 911