Deisis (Novogorod)

An Agreed Statement on the Holy Eucharist

U.S. Theological Consultation, 1969

We, the members of the Orthodox-Catholic consultation, have met and discussed our understanding of the Holy Eucharist. After a dialogue, based on separately prepared papers, we affirm our remarkable and fundamental agreement on the following:

1. The Holy Eucharist is the memorial of the history of salvation, especially the life, death, resurrection, and glorification of Jesus Christ.

2. In this eucharistic meal, according to the promise of Christ, the Father sends the Spirit to consecrate the elements to be the body and blood of Jesus Christ and to sanctify the faithful.

3. The eucharistic sacrifice involves the active presence of Christ, the High Priest, acting through the Christian community, drawing it into his saving worship. Through celebration of the Eucharist the redemptive blessings are bestowed on the living and the dead for whom intercession is made.

4. Through the eating of the eucharistic body and drinking of the eucharistic blood, the faithful, who through Baptism became adopted sons of the Father, are nourished as the one body of Christ, and are built up as temples of the Holy Spirit.

5. In the eucharistic celebration we not only commend ourselves and each other and all our lives unto Christ, but at the same time accept the mandate of service of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to mediate salvation to the world.

6. Through the Eucharist the believer is transformed into the glory of the Lord and in this the transfiguration of the whole cosmos is anticipated. Therefore the faithful have the mission to witness to this transforming activity of the Spirit.

Recognizing the importance of this consensus, we are aware that serious differences exist in our understanding of the church, eucharistic discipline, and pastoral practice which now prevent us from communicating in one another's churches. Our task should consist in exploring further how these differences are related to the agreement stated above and how they can be resolved.

Worcester, Massachusetts
December 13, 1969

Teachings of Christ

“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul?" (Mark 8:34-37 ESV)

Pentecost

Blessed are You, O Christ our God, * Who has shown the fishermen to be all wise, * by sending down to them the Holy Spirit, * and through them You have caught the whole world in Your net. * O Lover of Mankind, glory to You. (Troparion - Tone 8)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

When the Most High descended, confusing tongues, * He divided the nations; * but when He distributed the tongues of fire, * He called all to unity; * and, with one voice, * we glorify the Most Holy Spirit. (Kontakion - Tone 8)

Random Proverb

"Take my instruction instead of silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold, for wisdom is better than jewels, and all that you may desire cannot compare with her." (Proverbs 8:10,11 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

For to despise the present age, not to love transitory things, unreservedly to stretch out the mind in humility to God and our neighbor, to preserve patience against offered insults and, with patience guarded, to repel the pain of malice from the heart, to give one's property to the poor, not to covet that of others, to esteem the friend in God, on God's account to love even those who are hostile, to mourn at the affliction of a neighbor, not to exult in the death of one who is an enemy, this is the new creature whom the Master of the nations seeks with watchful eye amid the other disciples, saying:"If, then, any be in Christ a new creature, the old things are passed away. Behold all things are made new" (2 Cor. 5:17). 

St. Gregory the Great