More Unity

Not only is that the prayer my friend prays daily, it's also the topic of a paper she is researching on the Eucharist as the Sign of Unity. How can it be? she asks, not surprisingly. After all, there are 35,000 Protestant denominations and counting. There are three different branches of Christianity, the Orthodox, the Catholics, and the Protestants. How can the Eucharist be a Sign of Unity? what unity? And so she pursues the topic academically hoping to arrive at the answers she seeks.

In proffering my services, I found some great resources I'd like to share here:

1. Church documents at the Vatican website- aside from Sacrosanctum Concilium, Spiritus et Sponsa, Ecclesia de Eucharistia, and Sacramentum Caritatis, there was this gem from the CDF.

Of course, there's a whole parcel of documents on the Eucharist worth listing: Dominicae Cenae, Mirae Caritatis, Mysterium Fidei, Mediator Dei, Redemptionis Sacramentum, Mane Nobiscum Domine, and Eucharisticum Mysterium, as well as some documents on ecumenism: Ut unum sint and Unitatis Redingratio to name two.

2. There's a new blog find worth sharing, if only for his useful links: Theological Intentions blog wrote a post called Eucharist as Salvation, which brings the topic to a point.

3. Patristics- one website lists excerpts from various Church Fathers. From there we get this timely wisdom of St.Irenaeus for Good Friday: “By the wood of the Cross the work of the Word of God was made manifest to all: his hands are stretched out to gather all men together. Two hands outstretched, for there are two peoples scattered over the whole earth. One sole head in the midst, for there is but one God over all, among all and in all.”

4. There's also the Catholic Answers website, featuring this article by Dwight Longnecker, wherein the distinction between Christ, Church, and Eucharist dissolves. Avery Cardinal Dulles presents an article with a similar effect.

5. There's the Lineamenta from the Synod of Bishops for the Year of the Eucharist. Scott Hahn's website does a great job of making this very accessible.

6. Finally, there's this from our beloved Holy Father, an address in Bari on the Sacrament of Unity, wherein he states: "Here we are faced with a further dimension of the Eucharist, which I would like to touch upon before concluding. The Christ whom we encounter in the sacrament is the same here in Bari, as in Rome, as in Europe, America, Africa, Asia, Oceania. He is the one and same Christ who is present in the Eucharistic bread everywhere on earth. This means that we can only encounter him together with all others. We can only receive him in unity...The Eucharist, let us repeat, is the sacrament of unity. But, unfortunately, Christians are divided precisely on the sacrament of unity. All the more reason, therefore, that, supported by the Eucharist, we must feel stimulated to tend with all our strength toward that full unity that Christ ardently desired in the cenacle. Precisely here, in Bari, the city that keeps the bones of St. Nicholas, land of meeting and dialogue with Christian brothers of the East, I would like to confirm my wish to assume as a fundamental commitment to work with all my energies in the reconstitution of the full and visible unity of all the followers of Christ."

Anything I've missed? Has anyone read Paul McPartlan?

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