The Holy See Search



2-23 October 2005

The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church

This Bulletin is only a working instrument for the press.
Translations are not official.

English Edition


13 - 08.10.2005





At 09.00 a.m. today, Saturday 8 October 2005, in the presence of the Holy Father, with the prayer The Hour of Terce, the Tenth General Congregation began for the continuation of the interventions of Synodal Fathers in the Hall on the Synodal Theme The Eucharist: source and summit of the life and mission of the Church.

The President Delegate on duty was H.Em. Card. Telesphore Placidus TOPPO, Archbishop of Ranchi (India).

At the opening of the Tenth General Congregation, the Secretary General of the Synod of Bishops communicated that almost 50% of the Synodal Fathers of the XI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops were participating for the first time at a Synodal Assembly.

This General Congregation ended at 12.30 with the prayer Angelus Domini and 238 Fathers were present.


During this Tenth General Congregation, the following Fathers intervened:

- H. Em. Card. Edmund Casimir SZOKA, President of the Pontifical Commission for the State of Vatican City (VATICAN CITY)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Seán Baptist BRADY, Archbishop of Armagh, President of the Episcopal Conference (IRELAND)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Juan MATOGO OYANA, C.M.F., Bishop of Bata (EQUATORIAL GUINEA)
- Rev. Father José RODRÍGUEZ CARBALLO, O.F.M., General Minister of the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor
- H.E. Most. Rev. Berhaneyesus Demerew SOURAPHIEL, C.M., Metropolitan Archbishop of Addis Abeba, President of the Episcopal Conference, President of the Ethiopian Episcopal Conference (ETHIOPIA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Joseph BAGOBIRI, Bishop of Kafanchan (NIGERIA)
- H. Em. Card. Cláudio HUMMES, O.F.M., Archbishop of São Paulo (BRAZIL)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Félix LÁZARO MARTÍNEZ, Sch.P., Bishop of Ponce (PORTO RICO)
- H.E. Most. Rev. José Agustín GANUZA GARCÍA, O.A.R., Bishop Prelate of Bocas del Toro (PANAMA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Jean-Vincent ONDO EYENE, Bishop of Oyem (GABON)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Rafael Masahiro UMEMURA, Bishop of Yokohama (JAPAN)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Amédée GRAB, O.S.B., Bishop of Chur, President of the Episcopal Conference, President of the Council for the Conferences of Bishops of Europe (C.C.E.E.) (SWITZERLAND)
- H. Em. Card. Paul POUPARD, President of the Pontifical Council for Culture (VATICAN CITY)
- H.E. Most. Rev. William Stephen SKYLSTAD, Bishop of Spokane, President of the Episcopal Conference (UNITED STATES OF AMERICA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Gabriel PIROIRD, Bishop of Constantine (ALGERIA)
- H. Em. Card. Georges Marie Martin COTTIER, O.P., Pro-Theologian of the Pontifical Household (VATICAN CITY)
- H. Em. Card. Walter KASPER, President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity (VATICAN CITY)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Alain HAREL, Titular Bishop of Forconio, Apostolic Vicar of Rodrigues (MAURITIUS)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Andrés ARTEAGA MANIEU, Titular Bishop of Baliana, Auxiliary of Santiago de Chile (CHILE)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Cyrille Salim BUSTROS, OF THE Missionary Society of Saint Paul, Archbishop of Newton of the Greek-Melkites (UNITED STATES OF AMERICA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Severine NIWEMUGIZI, Bishop of Rulenge, President of the Episcopal Conference (TANZANIA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Aloysius M. SUTRISNAATMAKA, M.S.F., Bishop of Palangkaraya (INDONESIA)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Sofron Stefan MUDRY, O.S.B.M., Bishop Emeritus of Ivano-Frankivsk (UKRAINE)
- H.E. Most. Rev. Miguel Angel ALBA DÍAZ, Bishop of La Paz en la Baja California Sur (MEXICO)

Below are the summaries of the interventions:

- H. Em. Card. Edmund Casimir SZOKA, President of the Pontifical Commission for the State of Vatican City (VATICAN CITY)

The fIrst Synod I attended was in 1983. In the last 15 years, I have participated in every Synod except one. In the fonnal presentations during the disceptatio generalis, there seemed to be a pattern of speaking that doesn't change much from one Synod to another. In my humble opinion there seems to be a tendency, with some exception, to speak in formal and general tenns, without focusing on the specifIc problems and possible, practical solutions.
I think: that the interventiones liberae every evening, are much more productive because they focus on specifIc problems and offer possible solutions.
In my own opinion, the core problem for the consideration in this Synod is with our priests and ourselves as bishops. About 55 years ago, I read a book called "Keepers of the Eucharist" by William Henry Schaefers, no longer in print. It is a book for priests as those who celebrate the Eucharist. From an ascetical and spiritual point of view, it is one of the best and most inspiring books I have read on the priesthood. It emphasizes the great gift and dignity of the priesthood - the greatest gift God could give to a man. The love for the Eucharist and its centrality to the life and faith of our people depends to a great extent on the priest - his own faith, the life he lives, his prayer life, the simplicity of his life, his willingness to bring his own sacrifIces to the Mass and the manner in which he celebrates the Holy Eucharist.
I would call your attention to another book called the "Spirit of the Liturgy" published in the year 2000 by then Cadinal Joseph Ratzinger. It is an excellent synthesis of the historical and theological development of the Holy Liturgy of the Mass, entering into all aspects of the Liturgy, from the architecture of the Church to the type of music. This book could well serve as a help for our resolutions because it gives very practical insights.
To conclude, if the Holy Eucharist is to be the FONS ET CULMEN of the Life and Mission of the Church, we need, above all, priests and bishops of deep faith, prayer, spirituality and dedication.
I think we should leave this Synod with a greater determination to live a holier, sacrificial life which will be reflected in our celebration of the Holy Mass.

[00169-02.03] [IN151] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Seán Baptist BRADY, Archbishop of Armagh, President of the Episcopal Conference (IRELAND)

The Word of God is alive and active, with the ability to change minds and hearts. It can address the needs of the individual and the community gathered to hear the Word of Life. It is an important source of the Holy Spirit's transforming activity in the Liturgy.
Today, the same Christ is always present in the proclamation of the Word. He is the incarnate Word, and therefore the Word of God comes to us not as an idea but as a person and event, who calls us to that which our prayer does not dare to hope for.
Attention has been given to the thematic coherence of the readings which accompany the liturgical cycle. More needs to be done to ensure that the readings are accommodated to pastoral needs. The homily is mentioned in Article 47 as part of the Liturgy of the Word. The Instrumentum Laboris urges that thought be given to thematic homilies which treat of the great tracts of the Christian faith.
I would urge that help be given to the homilists. The Catechism of the Catholic Church and the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church are providential instruments of the teaching mission of the Church. A similar universal text to support the exposition of the readings of the liturgical cycle would help the preacher to break open the Scriptures in response to the signs of the times. If the difficult questions of this age are presented to the human family in global terms by global television networks, the internet and global magazines - should not the answer to these questions also be presented in global terms by the universal Church?
Experience has shown in my own country the transforming power of the liturgy of the Word and of the homily. On so many occasions of great tragedy and violence, the power of the Word and the homily to transform attitudes of anger, vengeance and retaliation into events of reconciliation, forgiveness and healing has been both humbling and inspiring. It is gratifying to note how scriptural words like justice, peace, forgiveness have become the lingua franca of the peace process.
In recent days, a historic moment in that political process has been achieved with the decommissioning of weapons by the largest paramilitary organisation. Two clergymen who have worked for many years to promote dialogue and reconciliation, a former President of the Methodist Church and a Redemptorist priest, were asked to witness the act ef decommissioning. This was perhaps, among other things, an acknowledgement of the role played by Ministers of the Word of God in creating the copditions for reconciliation and peace. It attests to the power of the Word, under the action of the Holy Spirit, to make all things new.

[00166-02.02] [IN156] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Juan MATOGO OYANA, C.M.F., Bishop of Bata (EQUATORIAL GUINEA)

My intervention attempts to make a reflection on “the numbers 70 and 71 of the Instrumentum Laboris, which speak about the celebration of the “Dies Domini”, context and privileged moment in which the Christian assembly receive the bread of God which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”
I am speaking personally, and I start from the experience gained in Equatorial Guinea, a country of small dimensions, which was able to be rapidly covered by the missionaries in its first evangelization. But it suffered a regime of religious repression during the first 11 years of its independence, and which also coincided with the years of the first applications of the renewal of the Church, provoked by Vatican Council II.
At the beginning of the 80's, with the repression over, our people returned to the interrupted religious practice. In one way or another and on diverse levels, different rhythms in the same journey were noted within the same human contingent.
The exploitation of oil in the last five years has introduced in the life of this people huge changes, which, if on the one hand, certainly point to a material evolution, on the other, affect the behaviour of its inhabitants.
We believe that with this is manifested a “hunger for real life”, with different nuances.
It is in this context that the pastoral priority of taking up again the Christian journey, on the clear roots of the greater traditional values of our people, presents itself. One of these values, which continues to touch the hearts of our people, is the reality of the extended family, visibly reinforced in time and space.
In the “Dies Domini” they gather together under the “great house” of their one Father, where they listen with great interest and filial devotion.
With His Word, which of guaranteed truth and creative, He not only gives his opinion and counsel, but guides all His children with impartiality along the way of a life and a “tradition” which are rooted in the distant past; He continues to build today, and to give cohesion to a unique “extended family” in time and in space.
Seeing in its womb the old, the young and children, they speak to Him as the God of “yesterday, of today and forever”(Hb 13:8), who guarantees the wisdom and experience of the old, ensuring stability, and impulses the enthusiasm of the young progressive person who reach his people to renew it with new plans of life.
There, when they tremble with vitality in long and multitudinous celebrations, they reinforce the joy of living, they learn about hospitality , and recognize the solicitude of one for another the generosity of the free donation of offerings brought in procession to the altar, the love of a Father who listens and welcomes everyone, in spite of the diversity of ages and ethnic groups...
The presentation of Jesus as “the bread of God... who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world”, constitutes an invitation for us to turn to Him, with the aim of quenching our yearning for “life and life to the full” (Jn 10:10)
In this Synod we have the expectation of finding, with our brothers,
1. The clearest way of introducing the Eucharist as the encounter with Jesus which quenches, at the end of a journey, what began with the search for and the following of his Truth.
2.How to teach, in the face of the growing egoism and hourding of today, the reality of the Eucharist as a free, generous and sacrificed donation from God, who as Father is supporting all his children.
3. How, finally, to put a stop to the accumulation which creates so many divisions, giving emphasis to the Eucharist as an abundant gift from Jesus, which began with the gesture of multiplying the bread to overflowing, because He alone can give us life to the full.

[00191-02.06] [IN161] [Original text: Spanish]

- Rev. Father José RODRÍGUEZ CARBALLO, O.F.M., General Minister of the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor

My intervention refers to Numbers. 46-48 of the Instrumentum Laboris, which reaffirms the “inseparable connection between the Table of the Word and the Table of the Eucharist”, without there being between them any “fractures”. Already in the 13th century, St Francis of Assisi speaks of this unity. The Christ he follows so radically is the one who “sees’ in “the body and blood of the Lord” and “in the holy words of the Lord” (Cf. Letter to the Clergy, 3).
This unity is clearly reaffirmed by Vatican Council II when in Dei Verbum it states: the Church has always venerated the Divine Scriptures just as she venerates the Body of the Lord (DV 21).
The Word of God proclaimed in the Eucharist announces what the sacrament realizes and reveals to the ecclesial community with regard to the meaning of the sacramental action. For this reason, the “Table of the Word” is essential to be able to sit at the Table of the “Body of Christ”; communion with the Body and Blood of Christ demands communion with the Word of the Lord, and it is only possible to see the Lord in the Eucharistic species if our “eyes” are enlightened by the Word and our heart “ burns” at listening to it (Cf. Lk 24:13-35). To “nurture the intimate union between the proclamation and the listening to the Word and the Eucharistic mystery” (Paul VI), it is necessary that:
- the ministers of the Eucharist have adequate biblical and liturgical formation in order to awaken in their own hearts and in the hearts of the faithful amazement for the Eucharistic mystery and amazement for the mystery of the Word.
- the homily, based on the sacred texts, as recommended by Vatican Council II (Cf SC 52) places the Word of the Lord first of all in relation with the sacramental celebration, that is, that it be mystagogical (Cf Instrumentum Laboris N. 47)
- theological teaching and the exercise of pastoral ministry underline the importance of the Word of God, inviting the faithful to a frequent “prayerful reading of the Word” and educating them to appreciate and love the bread of the Word, as they have learned by grace to appreciate and love the bread of the Eucharist;
- all evangelization projects to be animated by the Word, focused on the word and oriented towards obedience to the Word of God.
This Synod has to find ways for the Word of God to become “the food for life, for prayer and for the daily journey” (To walk from Christ, No.24), so that in a Society that is deeply wounded by the “dictatorship of relativism” (Pope Benedict XVI), the celebrated Word, celebrated, listened to and lived, can be a solid reference point on which to build the life of the ecclesial community and the personal life of all believers.

[00192-02.04] [IN163] [Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Berhaneyesus Demerew SOURAPHIEL, C.M., Metropolitan Archbishop of Addis Abeba, President of the Episcopal Conference, President of the Ethiopian Episcopal Conference (ETHIOPIA)

My intervention concerns the subject of this Synod: The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church with special emphasis on "The Centrality of the Paschal Mystery" and "Sunday Eucharist" of the Instrumentum Laboris Nos. 35 & 70.
The countries of the Horn of Africa - Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia - are in constant hunger for the fruits of the Eucharist: justice, peace, and love which only Our Lord Jesus Christ can give. Because they are considered not important by the powerful countries of this world, they are in a constant state of instability, war, drought, and famine. The tension that continues to exist between Eritrea and Ethiopia because of their border conflict seems to be unresolvable by the international community. Let us take also Somalia - it is a country with no central government for the last fourteen years! There are only four religious Sisters in the whole country of Somalia who keep the only Tabernacle of the Lord hidden in Mogadishu. Somalia has become an open and free port for the importation of small arms into the Horn of Africa and Central Africa
It is only through the Eucharist, the Paschal Mystery of the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ, that true reconciliation and peace can be built and sustained.
The celebration of the "Sunday Eucharist" presumes that there is a "Sunday" - the Day of the Lord - set apart and that the Eucharist can be celebrated freely on Sundays.
In some parts of the world, this is not possible: e.g. in Saudi Arabia or in some other Muslim countries. Sunday is a working day and the Eucharist is not celebrated because there are no Churches, nor priests, or there is simply no religious freedom.
From Eritrea and Ethiopia, there are many Christians who are working and living in Muslim countries. They are mostly Christians of the Ethiopian or Eritrean Orthodox Tewahdo Churches. They go there mostly to work as domestic workers, to take care of children or the elderly. I do not have the statistics of these Christians who go to Saudi Arabia, Yemen, the Gulf States, and other Muslim majority countries. They are in the hundreds of thousands. Only in Beirut, there are more than 20,000 Ethiopians working there. We are grateful for Caritas Lebanon for the help it gives to these Christians.
Before they go to the Muslim countries, they are forced to change their Christian names into Muslim ones and, especially, the women have to dress in Muslim attire. Once they reach their destinations, their passports are taken from them and they suffer all kinds of abuses and exploitations. Many are forced by the situation to become Muslims.
They are forced to go to these Muslim countries because of the poverty of their own countries, and because the doors of other Christian countries are closed to them. We know that many African Christians die crossing parts of the Sahara desert or get drowned in the Mediterranean Sea attempting to go to Christian countries in Europe and America.
It is poverty which is forcing them to give up their Christian heritage, their Christian culture, and even their human dignity.
They are denied their right of expressing their religion: the celebration of the Eucharist, and the Sunday Mass. It is one of the religious persecutions of the modem times.
I request the Synod Fathers, especially those working in Muslim countries where poor Christians go in search of employment, to extend their pastoral care to these Christians and to ask the Muslim governments to respect the religious freedom of the Christians.

[00194-02.02] [IN166] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Joseph BAGOBIRI, Bishop of Kafanchan (NIGERIA)

In his book: The Religious Consciousness J .B.Pratt asked three persons of animist Religions to explain what the "idols" they worshiped meant to them. Their responses were as follows:
10. The first said his idols were not images of gods but they were gods themselves.
11. The second said the image he worships before, is not the god per se. since the real god is in heaven. The image has the appearance of the god and so it helps him to pray.
12. The third person said, the image is a sensuous symbol, useful in aiding visualization and concentration. (cf E.B.Idowu ATR - a definition p. 123).
I want to use these three responses as my take-off point in discussing the meaning of Sacramental presence and sacramental representation which is the basis for Eucharistic Adoration and worship in the Church in the light of.I.L. nos 65,72-74.
How does this relate to Christians from the background of African Traditional Religion?
Eucharistic adoration does not fit neatly into any of these three modules. Yet it could be said to have in itself elements of each of these modules.
In this reflection we want to make four points:
1. To state that in the Holy Eucharist Christ is truly, really and substantially present. But this presence must be understood for what it is - Sacramental presence and Sacramental representation. Because of the unique nature of this presence, the soul is called to settle its "mind and heart" in contemplating Jesus in the Eucharist as an end itself and not only as a means to an end. Viewed from this point of view, the delicate line of demarcation between that which is REAL and that which is only a REPRESENTATION OF THE REALITY becomes slimmer and almost unidentifiable. There is the need for this Synod to develop a theology of presence, where the Church's understanding of what real presence means and also what it does not mean. For instance it does not mean physical but sacramental presence.
2. Because of the profound nature of the mystery of this Sacrament, no single human word can fully capture its meaning. Man only speaks of God in an anthropomorphic manner, and our human language is limited in expressing the reality of God. Therefore, we should be more tolerant in the use of other expressions such as transignification and transfinalization which may help in catching some glimpse of the Eucharistic mystery, without in anyway compromising the fact of real presence.
3. There are other forms of "presences" of Christ which must also be recognized and devotion to the Eucharist can become a gateway to recognizing Christ in his other forms of presence. The Council Fathers of the Second Vatican Assembly spoke of these other presences when they wrote of Christ's presence: in Sacred Scripture when it is proclaimed; in other Sacraments; in the Church; in the person of the Minister who offers the sacrifice of the Mass (cf. Sacrosanctum concilium no.7).
4. Eucharistic devotion should lead to personal transformation. Therefore, the beautiful reflections in I.L nos. 72-74 should be further developed in the document that will eventually emerge as the fruit of this current endeavour.
This is so because as John Paul II said: The Eucharistic sacrifice is intrinsically directed to the inward union of the faithful with Christ through communion (E. E 16-17).
While we admire and applaud the positive developments on the Eucharist and the interest and enthusiasm this AROUSES among the faithful, what I see are two main challenges: firstly sound catechesis in order to make faith in Eucharist more intelligible and secondly effort to move from the level of sound doctrine to the praxis level, this is, the level of personal transformation, that is reflective of the mystery we celebrate in the Eucharist.
Unless and until this is the case, our detractors who observe and respect the principle that there exists a delicate line of demarcation between the REAL and that which is primarily only a symbol, will described our laudable and beautiful works on the Eucharist, as one of a cabal of priests or priestcraft, determined to exploit man's weakness in this regard in order to perpetuate the relevance of its priestly office.

[00198-02.02] [IN114] [Original text: English]

- H. Em. Card. Cláudio HUMMES, O.F.M., Archbishop of São Paulo (BRAZIL)

According to the statistics of the Brazilian Government and the Church’s research in Brazil, the number of Brazilians who declare themselves Catholics has diminished rapidly, on an average of 1% a year. In 1991 Catholic Brazilians were nearly 83%, today and according to new studies, they are barely 67%. We wonder with anxiety: till when Brazil will be a Catholic country? In conformity with this situation, it has been found that in Brazil there are two Protestant pastors for each Catholic priest, and the majority from the Pentecostal churches.
Many indications show that the same is true for almost all of Latin America and here too we wonder: till when Latin America will be a Catholic continent?
The Church must pay more attention to this serious situation. The response of the Church in Brazil is, in the first place, the missions including the permanent home missionary visits. The parishes have to organize their faithful and to prepare them to be missionaries.
A missionary Church must also be deeply Eucharistic, for the Eucharist is the source of the mission. The Eucharist helps the disciple to grow, announcing the Word of God to him and bringing him to a personal and community meeting with Christ, through the celebration of the death and Resurrection of the Lord and through the sacramental communion with Him. The disciple, through this meeting realized in the Holy Spirit, is urged to announce also to others what he lived and experienced. Thus the disciple becomes a missionary. From the Eucharist, one goes on the mission.
Brazil and Latin America urgently need this missionary action nourished by the Eucharist.

[00114-02.02] [IN097] [Original text: Italian]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Félix LÁZARO MARTÍNEZ, Sch.P., Bishop of Ponce (PORTO RICO)

Number 74 of the Instrumentum laboris urges the importance of a catechesis that clarifies the bond between the Eucharist and the construction of a just society.
This same number 74 expresses, “The Church has great hope in her young people who are increasingly being drawn to the Eucharist”.
My intervention is in the sense that:
1. The importance that the youth have and of what is hoped of them should be emphasized more with a specific calling and a direct invitation to them to participate “in” and live “from” the Eucharist.
I asked a young person what message he wanted me to transmit at the Synod on behalf of the youth, and the reply was: “to listen to us”.
In front of the reality that young people live today, particularly in developed countries, it s becoming necessary and urgent to offer, present, and celebrate the Eucharist with them, in a way that, in the words of John Paul II, they feel “the Eucharist as the vital centre, around which young people gather to nourish their faith and enthusiasm”.
2. The Catechism needs to de deepened in more. Today we hear about the loss of the sense of sin.
Many Catholics are very far away from being able to render or give account for their own faith, such as St. Peter proposes in his first letter: “and always have your answer ready for people who ask you the reason for the hope that you have”.
On the other hand, it is not possible to love that which is not known. And not having the knowledge of the Church, the Eucharist, or of Christian faith, it is difficult to be able to love the Church, the Eucharist and that same Christian faith.
Catechesis is what is required. It seems to me that we suffer from lack of catechesis. I have the impression that no solid and deep catechesis is in progress. Our people are grateful and hungry for catechesis, that the truths of faith be explained to them.
The absence of catechesis and religious formation can perhaps also explain the facility with and reason for which some of our faithful go to other denominations and religious sects, drawn by the fireworks that a pseudo-religious science offers them, because they were not illuminated in time with the light of the Gospel through an adequate and good catechesis.

[00174-02.04] [IN135] [Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most. Rev. José Agustín GANUZA GARCÍA, O.A.R., Bishop Prelate of Bocas del Toro (PANAMA)

Santo Domingo recognizes that “Latin America and the Caribbean configure a multiethnic and pluricultural continent (244), with no less than fifty million Indigenous, more than five hundred peoples, each one of them with their own cultural identity. The same can be stated about many countries and even ecclesiastic jurisdictions. In the Prelature of Bocas del Toro four Indigenous peoples coexist, which alone constitutes 60% of the total population.
It is evident that the indigenous peoples find themselves in different situations with respect to human and religious development and theological reflection; but they are all in harmony in their
aspirations for inculturation of the liturgy of the Eucharistic celebration.
The “Instrumentum Laboris” takes up the topic of “Eucharistic Inculturation” on p. 73, Nos. 80 and 81, in which it accepts that, in many geographic regions “the matter is becoming a pastoral priority”.
We can consider three steps in the journey towards inculturation:
1. To rebuild the native subject of inculturation: the indigenous Christian communities, with the native Bishops, priests, deacons, religious and catechists of those same communities.
2. To prepare the receiving native people for inculturation: recovering, valuing, assimilating indigenous spirituality, where “seeds of the Word” are to be found.
3. To initiate and consolidate processes of indigenous appropriation of the Gospel, of the Church and of the liturgy, with ample leadership of native persons.
Synodal brothers: we invite you to consider the work which, with the title of “Inculturation of the Eucharistic celebration in the Indigenous Christian communities of Latin America”, we have placed in the General Secretariat of the Synod. Thank you.

[00092-02.03] [IN006] [Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Jean-Vincent ONDO EYENE, Bishop of Oyem (GABON)

The Eucharist and unity are tightly related. Because, the Eucharist, as the act of offering that Christ makes on the Cross, has as its goal the unification of all the children of Israel and human beings. Therefore, the Eucharist is the founding act of the New Covenant that God sealed with men in His Son Jesus. But if the Eucharist reestablishes communion between God and men it is fist of all the place for a close union between the Father and the Son.
1. The unity of Father and Son
In Christ’s priestly prayer (Jn 17), which precedes the Passion (Jn 18), the Father and the Son are consubstantially united: “All I have is yours and all you have is mine” (Jn 17:10). Thus, we can see that what precedes the Eucharistic act is this deep communion of the Father and the Son that tradition designated with the term ‘perichoresis’ or ‘inhabitation’ of the Father and of the Son.
When the Church celebrates the Eucharist according to the commandment of the Lord “do this in memory of me”, she realizes the union between the Father and the Son.
2. Unity of the Church
The Eucharist, Christ’s act of offering, because it proceeds from the union of Father and Son, communicates Divine Life to men. Thus, nurtured at the same source and by the same bread, Christians live from the union of the Father and the Son.
A. Unity among Christians
In Paul’s time, the unity of the Christian community of Ephesus was threatened, among others, by the dischord between the Christians and the influence of heretical doctrines. Facing these dangers, Paul exhorts the Christians to unity basing it on the fact that “there is one body, one Spirit, just as one hope” (Eph 4:4). In other words, those who eat the same bread and drink from the same cup, no matter their origins and social status, are now configured to Christ always united to His Father.
B. Unity between Churches
The problem of the unity of Christians is not only limited to within a particular Christian community or Diocese. Since Vatican Council II, the plurality of Christian Churches urges the Catholic Church to favor dialogue. And the goal of this dialogue, also called ecumenism, is to promote unity among Christians. This dialogue, initiated by the Council, puts Christians before the scandal of division and the paradox according to which Christ instituted one sole and unique Church in which Christians are divided. These divisions seem to the Christian conscience like a violation of Jesus’ will and an obstacle to evangelization.
1. The Eucharist and unity are equivalent terms since, in the sacrifice of the Cross the unity of those God wants to redeem through the blood of His Son is accomplished.
2. Christians, in the midst of ideological, economical... discordances, have the commanding desire to maintain unity among themselves thanks to the “one body, one heart and the one hope” communicated to all by Jesus.

[00095-02.04] [ONJE] [Original text: French]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Rafael Masahiro UMEMURA, Bishop of Yokohama (JAPAN)

A Eucharistic Celebration which responds to the real situation of modern people
In Japan the First National Incentive Convention for Evangelization was held in 1987. The aim of this meeting of the faithful and the ministers of the church was to reflect on future evangelization in Japan. One of the main topics that arose was "separation of faith and life". The Convention also requested efforts "to produce a liturgy that can appeal to the heart of people and strengthen mission".
The basic pastoral problem concerning the Eucharist is: how closely is the Eucharist connected with "the joys and hopes and the sorrows and anxieties of people today" ? How does the Eucharist respond to anxieties of people or change the meaning of the life of the people in Christ? Unless the life of the faithful is linked to the Eucharist, the Eucharist cannot influence the life of the faithful.
The Church draws her life from the Eucharist
In order that the Church can draw life from the Eucharist, the Eucharist should be:
- One which can alleviate the problems and anxieties of people
- One which can deeply influence the hearts of people
- One which can nourish daily life and make it Eucharistic.
Especially for the liturgy in Asia, the following revisions can be proposed:
- Introduce the salvific events of Asia into the liturgical calendar
- Multiply the ways of the Eucharistic Celebration without changing the essence in order to celebrate the mysteries of the life of the faithful in accordance with the various times and events.
The Role of the Bishops' Conference in Liturgical Inculturation
It is desirable to facilitate as much as possible the power of the Bishops' Cconferences in the local churches to adapt the liturgy to the local cultural setting. If the Eucharist is to be anrauthentic celebration of the local church, we need above all adequate inculturation. Incorporating elements of native festivals is important for evangelization.
Therefore the Apostolic See needs to trust the Bishops' Conferences when it approves the translation of liturgical texts in local languages. To prepare local liturgical texts, the important thing is not a mechanical translation, but to examine and find suitable words proper to the local culture while respecting the culture and history of each nation. When the Committee for the Liturgy of the Bishops' Conference of Japan examines liturgical texts for the Church in Japan, it not only focuses on revision of the turn of a phrase, but endeavors to create a liturgy which will touch the heartstrings of the Japanese people. In each local church, especially in Asia, we have to be conscious that the liturgy is for all the peoples who are living in the local culture. Consequently, at times we need to propose to restructure our liturgical books.

[00100-02.04] [IN036] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Amédée GRAB, O.S.B., Bishop of Chur, President of the Episcopal Conference, President of the Council for the Conferences of Bishops of Europe (C.C.E.E.) (SWITZERLAND)

No. 87 of the Instrumentum Laboris is entitled: “The Eucharist and Intercommunion”. It says: “While most responses seem to agree that a common profession of faith in the Eucharist must precede the reception of Holy Communion at Mass, the manner of presenting the mystery of the Eucharist in ecumenical dialogue still needs clarification, so as to avoid two opposite extremes: complete exclusion beforehand and a relativism”. I refer to the ecclesial communities that celebrate the memorial of the Lord in the holy Supper. In ecumenical dialogue with these communities, often one can see an increasing convergency on very important themes: real presence, sacrificial characteristic of the memorial, need for ordination. The formulation of the nature of the Church and the concordance on the fact that the Holy eucharist has been entrusted to Her are difficult, source and summit of her vocation and of her mission, therefore “it makes no sense not to belong to a Church community and, at the same time, to want to receive the Eucharist”. For us inter-celebration, intercommunion, general hospitality offered to all baptized (or directly present) are not possible. But participation in holy communion by non-catholic single baptized, in exceptional cases and on certain conditions, is explicitly foreseen by n. 129 of the Ecumenical Directory of 1993, which does not only speak about admittance but also invitation, when certain conditions have been verified, among which belonging to the Catholic Church is not mentioned. This possibility should not be forgotten. Taking it into account in the pastors’ behavior towards those who, without belonging to the Catholic Church, share the empassioned prayer of Jesus for unity, should remain a recognized way to achieve this when and how the Lord, “the living bread descending from heaven for the life of the world”, would want.

[00102-02.04] [IN040] [Original text: Italian]

- H. Em. Card. Paul POUPARD, President of the Pontifical Council for Culture (VATICAN CITY)

I refer, on behalf of the Pontifical Council for Culture, to part IV, chapter II, of the Instrumentum laboris: “The Eucharist, the Mission of Evangelization, and Inculturation” (num. 78 and 80), and its conclusion (num 90 and 91).
1. The Eucharist is “a transforming force in culture...the seed of a new world” (Instr. Lab., 90). The transformation of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ is the guarantee of the transformation operated in us by the Eucharist. Each faithful is called to assimilate, in personal meditation and community prayer, the reality of the celebrated mystery. Nourished by this celebration, he incarnates “the Eucharistic ‘plan’ in daily life, wherever people live and work—in families, schools, the workplace, in all of life's settings” (Instr. Lab. 78). This is how the Eucharist acts as the seed of a new culture for an authentic civilization of love.
2. Evangelization is not the fruit of inculturation. It is its source. Living in the heart of cultures in the vast mosaic of peoples, the Church never ceases evangelizing for the inculturation of the Gospel. It should suffice to evoke the name of Saint Benedict to measure the millenary fruitfulness of an evangelized culture through the witness of ecclesial communities, particularly monastic life. Two thousand years of Eucharistic ‘practice’ saw men and women from different cultures give form, according to the genius of their own culture, to the inculturated liturgies, as testified by the Oriental Churches. The different rites express and should express always the same mystery. The are not born from an adaptation of the Eucharist to culture, but from the transformation of cultures by the Gospel: the Church looks for the most appropriate forms, purified from the waste due to man’s sin, to help the faithful fully live the mystery revealed, received from her Lord.
3. In dialogue with the world of the non-belief and religious indifference, the Pontifical Council for Culture notes: the superficiality, at times even the trivialization, seen in the negligence of certain celebrations, not only do not help the believer in his path of faith, but hit against those live it merely externally. Excessive importance given to the pedagogical dimension and the will to make the liturgy comprehensible to even those external observers, as if that was its primary function, produces the inverse result. One does not inculturate a counter-culture. The vocation of inculturated liturgy is to introduce us with all our being into the greatness of the mystery of faith in the salvific action of God in His Son Jesus.
4. The liturgy is beautiful because it expresses the beauty of the holiness of God (cf. Instr. Lab., no.90). For the believer, beauty transcends the aesthetic. It allows the passage of “for self” to “greater than self”. The liturgy is not beautiful, and therefore true, until it is rid of any motive other than that of celebrating the Lord. The beauty of the rites, the signs, the songs and the ornaments of the liturgical celebration have but the one goal of introducing us into the profound beauty of the encounter with the mystery of God, present amidst men through the mediation of His Son, He who renews us unceasingly by His sacrifice for love. The Liturgy expresses the beauty of communion with Him and with our brothers, the beauty of a deep harmony translated in gestures, symbols, words, images and melodies that profoundly touch the heart and the spirit, and provoke the amazement and the desire to encounter the risen Lord, “The Door of Beauty”. The liturgy is beautiful when it is “agreeable to God” and introduces us to Divine joy, with all the Saints, and the Virgin Mary, “Eucharistic woman par excellence”.
This was the Eucharistic prayer by Theresa, Doctor of the Church: “My Beloved, come live within me. Oh! Come, your beauty revives me. Deign to transform me into You!”

[00103-02.03] [IN041] [Original text: French]

- H.E. Most. Rev. William Stephen SKYLSTAD, Bishop of Spokane, President of the Episcopal Conference (UNITED STATES OF AMERICA)

The Eucharist leads us to mission in three ways:
1. We are disciples of Jesus who through Eucharist are empowered to share his love with the world.
2. Jesus in the Gospel:John tells us that as he washed the feet of the apostles, we are to wash one another's feet.
3. Through the Eucharist, Jesus sends us forth to be instmments of peace and reconciliation. lte missa est!

[00060-02.05] [IN051] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Gabriel PIROIRD, Bishop of Constantine (ALGERIA)

We are very much a minority of local churches, living in a world where Islam has strongly marked culture. Our communities are quite spread out in the vast area of our Dioceses. Because of the needs of the mission, many live far away from any priestly presence. Due to this they cannot participate in the Eucharist, except on rare occasions. Such a situation leads us to look into the bond between the Eucharist and mission:
- Our giving thanks to God joins that of our Muslim friends who also praise God for his work of creation and mercy. We could spiritually incorporate their prayers in our Eucharists.
We are amazed to see sometimes our Muslim friends “linked with the Paschal Mystery” (Cf. GS no. 22, 5). When we come to inscribe our life in the offering of Christ, we also, in some way, do so with the lives of our friends.
- In the measure that they cannot participate frequently in the Eucharistic celebration, some give more time to Eucharistic Adoration; they discover the density of a real presence that gives strength to their daily lives.
- Invisibly our Eucharistic celebrations gather a still absent people, one of those who are searching for God in the righteousness of their hearts. For a particular Church, the way of living the Eucharist cannot be separated from its concrete history with the people she was given to by the Lord.

[00076-02.03] [IN062] [Original text: French]

- H. Em. Card. Georges Marie Martin COTTIER, O.P., Pro-Theologian of the Pontifical Household (VATICAN CITY)

If the Church has pronounced directives concerning the admission to the Eucharist of non-Catholic Christians and if she rejects intercommunion, this is because Eucharistic communion is not a starting point, but rather expresses and perfects a communion viewed in its entirety: communion in the doctrine of the Apostles, in the sacraments and in communion with the Apostolic College, where Peter is the Head.
This position seems unjustly hard to our Protestant brothers, because it is not understood. It is a fraternal duty, in consequence, that the Church says that she does see herself as having the right to dispose as she wishes of what is a gift received from her Lord. Her attitude is one of adoration, of praise and of obedience.

[00080-02.03] [IN069] [Original text: French]

- H. Em. Card. Walter KASPER, President of the Pontifical Council for the Promotion of Christian Unity (VATICAN CITY)

I am referring to chapters 86 and 87 of the Instrumentum laboris and to the theme: The Eucharist and Ecumenism. I am thankful for what has been said in these chapters, and in the General Report, about the Eucharist as a sacrament of unity and I would like, first of all, to underline what has already been said in the Synod Hall about Eucharistic ecclesiology, which is of great importance for the ecumenical movement.
The theme “Eucharist and unity” goes back to what Saint Paul says in his first letter to the Corinthians: “And as there is one loaf, so we, although there are many of us, are one single body, for we all share in the one loaf” (1 Cor 10:17). This assertion “one loaf - one body” and “participation in the single chalice”, which means “communion in the single body”, modeled the entire tradition of the Church in the Orient and in the West. First of all, we find this first of all in Saint Augustine and once again in Saint Thomas Aquinas. For Thomas, the ‘res’, that is, the species and the goal of the Eucharist is not the real presence of Christ, which Thomas no doubt teaches, but for him the real presence is only ‘res et sacramentum’, that is, an intermediate reality. The ‘res’, the goal of the Eucharist is the unity of the Church.
This view was renewed in Vatican Council II, which rediscovered the Church as communion, through the common participation in the sole Baptism and the sole Eucharistic bread. On this point, we agree with the Oriental Churches; the Communities that go back to the Reform had the same concept at their origins, they have only recently abandoned this. Therefore, the Catholic concept of the intimate tie between Eucharistic communion and ecclesial communion is not - as some would tend to believe - a vague anti-ecumenical concept, but an ecumenical concept per se.
However, because of this reason, the terminology, which unfortunately is found also in the Instrumentum laboris, and that speaks about “intercommunion”, is ambiguous and in itself contradictory. It should be avoided. Since this is not an “inter” communion, that is a “between” two communions (two Communities), rather a communion in the communion of the one body of Christ, which is the Church.
There is another weak point in the Instrumentum laboris. It mentions the “communicatio in sacris” only as one principle, while Vatican Council II talks about two principles: the unity if the Church and participation in the means of grace, asserting that the unity of the Church, on the most part, forbids the access of a non-Catholic to the Eucharist, but participation in the means of grace perhaps recommends the admission of a non-Catholic to the Eucharist (Unitatis redintegratio, 8; cf. Ecumenical Directory, 129). For that reason Pope John Paul II wrote, which was to him a “reason for joy” that the Catholic ministers in certain particular cases could administer the Sacraments of the Eucharist, of Penance and of Extreme Unction to the sick to other Christians (Encyclical “Ut unum sint”, 46; Encyclical “Ecclesia de Eucharistia”, 46).
These formulations - “recommend”, “reason for joy” - mean that this is not merely a concession or exception, but a possibility positively founded on the Christian concept of the human person, that is on the uniqueness of every person and the uniqueness of every situation of salvation. The human person is never a case of general principle. Canon Law respects this uniqueness of every person and, on the basis of and within the limitations of universal law, in certain particular and determinate cases - where the possibility of scandal is remote - gives way not to private conscience but to a canonic act of admission by the competent Bishop; or to express this in a better way, gives room to spiritual discernment, to prudential judgement and the pastoral wisdom of the Bishop (cf. CIC can 844).
As for the criteria for such prudential decisions, we have a development since the publication of the two Codes of Canon Law. The criteria as listed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (num. 1398-1401) and in the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (no. 293) concerning the ecclesial communities, are four: a grave necessity, spontaneous request (of their own will), required disposition and manifestation of the Catholic faith regarding the Sacrament. Personally, I am convinced that with these criteria the truly pastoral problems may be resolved in a positive way.
Because these questions in many countries are of great pastoral importance, I wish to recommend they be included in the final text or in the propositions.

[00183-02.03] [IN136] [Original text: Italian]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Alain HAREL, Titular Bishop of Forconio, Apostolic Vicar of Rodrigues (MAURITIUS)

The discovery of this great treasure that is the Eucharist implies, among other things, a great effort of inculturation. An important effort has already been made in the wake of Vatican Council II. What a joy to hear God in Jesus speak to us in our own language! In our small islands in the Indian Ocean, our populations coming from different horizons, uprooted from their original culture due to the drama of slavery, had to invent their own language, Creole, to be able to communicate, to have their sufferings and hopes raised up to the Lord. What ‘pride’ to be able to give thanks, in memory of the death and Resurrection of Jesus, in our own language and with our drums, our “boms”, triangles and “cordeons”’, our Creole songs. However, inculturation should not be reduced only to liturgical expressions. Like a new Pentecost, it must allow meeting man at the heart of his culture. In the context of secularization, of economic globalization and of mass communication taken to the extreme, our Christian communities must develop the evangelical values such as gratitude, gratuity, the search for meaning, the taste for beauty, silence and interiority. There is a whole task of cultural renewal to be done, bound with the Gospel, to help the faithful, especially the young, to come and drink at the living source of the Eucharist, ‘source and summit’ of all Christian life.

[00104-02.03] [IN086] [Original text: French]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Andrés ARTEAGA MANIEU, Titular Bishop of Baliana, Auxiliary of Santiago de Chile (CHILE)

I speak about Part IV of the Instrumentum Laboris, especially about the “Eucharistic spirituality” and the “Mission” of the Christian (Instrumentum Laboris 73 and 78). The Eucharist, in an admirable way, allows for the revealing of the meaning of life, in the “key” of the Paschal Mystery of Christ )cf. Instrumentum Laboris 9-10), by means of the pedagogy of the Liturgy. “The Eucharist is the response to the signs of the times in contemporary culture” (IL 10). The Eucharist becomes “reason”, “source”, “power”, “principle”, ‘font”, “heart” and anticipation” for her tangible existence. In order to overcome the distance there is also to be found among those of us in pastoral life with respect to the Eucharist, and the dramatic and scandalous lack of connection between life and mission, it is necessary to cultivate that Eucharistic attitude, proper of the saints and of the Holy Virgin Mary, “Eucharistic woman” (cf. IL 77).
1. More emphasis in the Catecheses of children, young people and adults will have to be put on the importance of the Dominical Celebration of the Eucharist, which helps to see the world with a “special light” (cf. IL 70). It is a powerful school of Christian life at which one cannot be lacking without maturity in faith being affected, which the present time demands of the Christian faithful.
2. On the other hand, the Liturgy needs to express with more clarity that the Holy Mass is related to being sent and with Mission (cf. IL 88) The post-communion prayer and blessing with the “sending forth” does not seem sufficient. What can most help us in this sense is the bimillenial treasure of prayer and liturgical tradition that can be investigated, and the experts will be able to help us with this. Just as in the present form of celebration of the sacrament of Reconciliation, the celebration is prolonged in daily life, through satisfaction, the way to teach Christians, with more clarity can be sought, that Mass is prolonged in life with the mission in the world,. That we may say with Fr. Alberto Hurtado, Chilean Jesuit, who will be canonized at the end of this Synod “My Mass is my life and my life is a prolonged Mass”.

[00105-02.03] [IN087] [Original text: Spanish]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Cyrille Salim BUSTROS, OF THE Missionary Society of Saint Paul, Archbishop of Newton of the Greek-Melkites (UNITED STATES OF AMERICA)

1. Paragraph 91 of the Instrumentum Laboris defines the new commandment as being “the love of God and one’s neighbour”. This definition is not exact. Because the new commandment consists in us loving each other “as Christ loved us”, that means with a perfect and universal love that includes the enemies and goes as far as the sacrifice of oneself for them in death.
2. The Instrumentum Laboris speaks about violence and terrorism in paragraphs 79 and 84. What is lacking in the text is the clarification of the bond between the new commandment and the victory over violence: because it is through loving his enemies and through praying to those who killed him, and through forgiving them, that Jesus defeated violence and terrorism.
3. Paragraph 37 develops the idea of sacrifice. In this passage it is missing the explanation that Jesus’ sacrifice consisted in refusing to defeat evil by evil in order to testify to the universal love of God who, while condemning sin, He forgives sinners.
4. These 3 ideas must be commemorated in the Eucharistic Anaphore, and this, for example, in the following manner: “In the night when He was delivered, or better he delivered himself to testify the universal love of God, like a lamb conducted to be sacrificed, refusing to reply to evil with evil, loving his enemies and praying for those who killed him, according to his new commandment: ‘love each other as I loved you’, he took the bread... etc.”

[00106-02.03] [IN088] [Original text: French]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Severine NIWEMUGIZI, Bishop of Rulenge, President of the Episcopal Conference (TANZANIA)

In the Eucharist we celebrate the encounter with the risen Lord, the bread of life, whose death and resurrection has reconciled man with God the Father. It is the Lord who after the resurrection gave his peace to his disciples, who had almost lost hope after the Lord of life had suffered a violent death on the cross. While full of fear in closed doors, he stood in their midst and said to them “Peace be with you” (Jn 20: 19). And the disciples were filled with joy to see him. They further recognized him through the breaking of bread.
Jesus makes the Eucharist therefore a gift of peace. The Eucharistic Jesus dispels fear and brings inner joy and peace. But to do so we must be reconciled with God. We cannot celebrate and receive the Eucharist and continue living in fear or violence because Christ came to give us peace as the Angels sung at his birth “Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests” (Lk 2: 14). Before and after his death he gave us his peace: "Peace I leave you, peace I give to you" (Jn 14:27). He continues giving us peace. That gift of peace he gave in the Easter greeting is given always here and now, especially in the Eucharist. We cannot however receive and enjoy this peace if we are not reconciled with God and reconciled among ourselves. That is why he invites us to be reconciled before we come to offer our sacrifices (Mt 5 :24-25). The reason is that reconciliation is the way to peace. It is therefore incompatible to unite our sacrifice with that of Christ in the Eucharistic celebration with the hearts full of hatred, bitterness and feelings of revenge.
The Church that celebrates the Eucharist has the mission to bring and maintain the peace of Christ on earth. The Church as the Mystical Body of Christ has a duty to be the “Sacrament of peace”. It has a duty to be the peacemaker, for “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called the children of God” (Mt 5:9). The Eucharist should guide the people to find peace in Christ through their union with him. Pope John Paul II called on the Africans and everyone, I believe, to “bear witness to Christ also by promoting justice and peace on the continent and throughout the world” (JOHN PAUL II, Apost. Exhort. Ecclesia in Africa, Vatican, 1994, art. 105). Receiving the Eucharist demands us also to bear witness to Christ in that sense. The mission of the Church to evangelize also “means to workfor peace” (JOHN PAUL II, Alloc., This is the proclamation, Message on the World Day of Peace, 1 Jan., 2000, Vatican, par. 20).
In the celebration of the Eucharist the Church always prays for peace. Whoever takes part in the celebration and especially those who receive the Eucharist must therefore be challenged to work for peace, justice and reconciliation. The Eucharist must be a source and force of a commitment for this course, a commitment which is essential to a Catholic in particular.

[00108-02.04] [IN090] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Aloysius M. SUTRISNAATMAKA, M.S.F., Bishop of Palangkaraya (INDONESIA)

Reflection on the eucharistic meaning and relevance for our times, raise some questions, among others: how can the meaning of the Eucharist explain the task of the faithful to be missionary in broad sense? And what is the relation between the meaning of the Eucharist and mission? How far the essential part of eucharistic celebration can be inculturated? Is it possible to stress the influence of the eucharistic celebration for daily life on the missionary activities, so that it will raise new culture, new habit of better life?
We can start this reflection and to answer the above questions by referring to the essential task of the Church. "The Church on earth is by its very nature missionary since, according to the plan of the Father, it has its origin in the mission of the Son and the Holy Spirit" (AG 2, cf. LG 1). The celebration of the Eucharist absolutely needs faith. Lack of faith can have negative impact on missionary spirit. The goal of missionary activities among others is to response the needs of our situation.
Our modern world is characterized by culture of death, terrorism, individualism, materialism and hedonism. Therefore, it is important to stress the meaning of the Eucharist based on the living faith, a new habit(us), culture of life in peace and love. In the pastoral letter of the Indonesian Bishops' Conference, the need of the new habit(us) has been elaborated, so that the role of the faith, expressed in moral and concrete attitudes would influence the life of the people. In this case, eucharistic celebration raises deep and rich inspiration. Our mission, in broad sense, seems to witness how important to work together with all people of other religions, to embody every human desire, peace and love in society.
The goal of mission can be divided into two aspects, linked one to another. On one side, mission is directed ad intra, and on the other side is directed ad extra. In relation to the Eucharist, its celebration, first of all, brings the faithful to a deeper faith, through the Word of God and personal sanctification through conversion and receiving Holy Communion. From this point of view the Eucharist become the source of moral strength to build new habits among the Catholics. In turn, mission based on the eucharistic meaning demands the faithful fulfill their responsibility to be active and participate in the Church mission in the world, namely to build a peaceful society in every part of the world, based on Jesus’ mission. This is the meaning of mission ad extra based on the eucharistic celebration.
The problem is: how the eucharistic celebration will form a new way of life, a culture of living faith. “Culture is the vital space within which the human person comes face to face with the Gospel” (Ecclesia in Asia, a. 21). In other words, “Faith takes form in culture and a culture is also the result of faith” (Instrumentum Laboris, a.80). It seems all efforts of inculturation are still focused on the dynamic encounter between elements of culture and the spiritual values of the Gospel. In relation to the Liturgy in general, the Eucharist as the source and summit of all Christian life and mission (cf. RM 54), should influence the faithful to perform mission and bring about the Good News to the poor, the oppressed, and the needy.
To elaborate the relation between the Eucharist and the Mission for the new culture, it seems not enough to open the documents, and to produce a new one, but it is necessary to endorse efforts, to make movements and to create some new habits, so that the Eucharist is really meaningful both for the faithful and the people of all religions.

[00109-02.03] [IN091] [Original text: English]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Sofron Stefan MUDRY, O.S.B.M., Bishop Emeritus of Ivano-Frankivsk (UKRAINE)

The question which I am putting forward stems from a practical need. In the Ukraine, the ordinary situation of life with all its problems and with the challenges of post-communism is a common issue to us Greek Catholics and likewise to the Orthodox.
Canon law 702 of the Canon Code of the Eastern Churches expressly forbids con-celebrating the Divine Eucharist with non Catholic priests and vice versa. This canon law stems from the need of fullness of unity between the Churches. Although in agreement, I believe there is the need to review this canon law revaluing some fundamental points of the Eucharist and of ecumenism, by also specifying the term “non Catholic” used in the aforementioned canon.
One has to underline the intimate relationship between the Word and the Sacrament. The proclamation of the Good News is addressed to everybody. The Sacrament is reserved to who welcomed the proclamation and fulfils the incorporation. Hence, the Eucharist not only expresses the unity of the church, but produces it. As an element constituting unity, it cannot come afterwards; but must be welcomed as a key moment in order to make our ecumenical aspirations practical.
As an expression of visible unity of the Church, in an ontological sense, that is the fullness of the means of salvation, it is also a promise of the realization of the phenomenon of the visible unity. The Eucharist produces the full visible unity of the Church.
Consequently, we make unity between us real by allowing non Catholic Orthodox to participate in communion.
Thus common participation in celebration of the Eucharist between Catholics and Orthodox and vice versa could be that light which enlightens us to achieve the breath of our only Lord, Saviour and Shepherd: “Ut unum sint”.
These requirements perhaps are not well present in the official relations between our Churches, but are felt more and more in our daily pastoral work.

[00110-02.05] [IN093] [Original text: Italian]

- H.E. Most. Rev. Miguel Angel ALBA DÍAZ, Bishop of La Paz en la Baja California Sur (MEXICO)

Pope John Paul II, talking about communion, warned us as to how wrong it is to promote practical initiatives without promoting a spirituality that could help us to overcome the temptations that constantly waylay us. He pointed out to us that without a spiritual journey, external means convert themselves in masks, in means without a soul.
For this reason, in dealing with the Eucharist, I want to reiterate the importance of cultivating a Eucharistic spirituality that allows us, not only to celebrate the Eucharist in a correct and dignified manner, but also encourages us to live it as source, centre and summit of our priestly and ecclesial life.
To form ourselves for the Eucharist is indeed to be formed to follow faithfully a ritual that permits us to make ours the words and gestures of the Redeemer at the Last supper, for in the Eucharist, we “transmit that which we received”.
However, if we do not want the unleavened bread of our Eucharists to be contaminated by the “yeast of the Pharisees”, to form ourselves in the Eucharist is also to be formed in making ours the very same feelings and Eucharistic attitudes of the Redeemer.
To form ourselves in the Eucharist, for this reason, is to be formed in the experience of grace, in the contemplation of the marvels that God does. It is to feel ourselves as graced, to experience the gratuity of all we are and have.
It is to be formed to “give thanks always, in every place and in all the circumstances of life”, appreciating life with its sorrows and joys and discovering that “everything happens for the good of those the Lord loves”.
It is to be formed to make of our life a Eucharist, to love and serve God and humanity with grateful love, to ,make of our lives a living and permanent offering.
To form ourselves for the Eucharist is to be formed in order to give worship to the Father “in spirit and truth”. Perhaps seven years of seminary seem too many to learn to say Mass, but they are too few to learn to celebrate the Eucharist.
The Instrumentum Laboris gathers suggestions that denounce serious negative practices. They are not only transgressions of the rubrics, but the expression of attitudes that ignore or deform the sense of the reform of the Council.
If precipitation in applying the liturgical reform has lead us to lose our equilibrium, in looking again for this balance, before proposing new initiatives, we must promote a spirituality that allows for the overcoming of both a passive ritualization and an excessive creativity, so that the Mystery can speak through the Liturgy.

[00147-02.02] [IN099] [Original text: Spanish]


Accredited journalists are informed that Thursday, 13 October 2005, at 12.45 in the John Paul II Conference Hall of the Holy See Press Office, the Second Press Conference will be held on the works of the XI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops (Relatio post disceptationem).

The following will intervene:

● H. Em. Card. Francis Arinze
Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments
● H. Em. Card. Juan Sandoval Íñiguez
Archbishop of Guadalajara (Mexico)
● H. Em. Card. Telesphore Placidus Toppo
Archbishop of Ranchi (India)
● H. Exc. Msg. John Patrick Foley
Titular Archbishop Of Neapolis of Proconsulari
President of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications
President of the Information Commission
● H. Exc. Msg. Sofron Stefan Mudry, O.S.B.M.
Bishop Emeritus of Ivano-Frankivsk (Ukraine)
Vice-President of the Information Commission


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