Rorate Caeli

"The Eucharist is basically a community meal"

Holy Thursday footwashing in India
(This is another proof of how the Benedictine program of liturgical renewal is being completely ignored in Asia -- a frightening fact, given that the Asia has the largest number of Catholic seminarians and priestly ordinations among all continents and is slated to exercise increasing influence on the universal Church. Emphases are mine. CAP)

ASIA Forum on Eucharist and community sends message to bishops

May 22, 2009

SEOUL (UCAN) -- Some Catholic theologians and Church workers from across Asia have sent a message to Church leaders saying the Eucharist, the core of Catholicism, should be a bridge connecting faith in God with everyday life.

Some 80 theologians, missioners and lay activists from 11 Asian countries attended the forum, titled "Eucharist and Community - Beyond All Barriers." The International Catholic Movement for Intellectual and Cultural Affairs (ICMICA) and Seoul-based Woori Theology Institute (WTI) jointly organized the May 18-20 event at St. Benedict Retreat Center in Seoul.

The two groups held the forum ahead of the ninth plenary assembly of the Federation of Asian Bishops' Conferences (FABC), scheduled to take place in Manila Aug. 10-16 under the theme of "Living the Eucharist in Asia."

At the end of their gathering they issued a declaration saying they were committed to developing a more comprehensive catechesis on the Eucharist, showing its relevance to daily life. They also said they are committed to using the power of the Eucharist for a more effective appreciation of the FABC's triple dialogue with Asia's peoples, cultures and religions.

The keynote speaker, Jesuit Father Michael Amaladoss, had pointed out that the Eucharist is basically a "community meal," a symbolic action that he said has ritual, social and mystic levels.

"The symbolic action to be real and authentic should celebrate life. But if the community does not actively strive for it, then the community should not celebrate. That is why reconciliation involving mutual forgiveness may have to precede the celebration," said the director of the Institute for Dialogue with Cultures and Religion in Chennai, southern India.

The basic principle of the Eucharist is the full, conscious and active participation of the people, he stressed. "The community as the Body of Christ is the celebrant, while the priest is a 'minister' and thus a servant of the community," he added.

Lawrencia Kwark Eun-kyung, ICMICA secretary general, told UCA News on May 20 that the forum was an attempt by the laity to communicate with Church leaders in Asia ahead of the FABC plenary. "Another aim was to build and strengthen networks among theologians and Church activists," the Korean woman added.

Participants also included Bishop Johannes Pujasumarta of Bandung, Indonesia; Protestant Bishop Dhirendra Kumar Sahu, general secretary of the National Council of Churches in India; and Maryknoll Father William LaRousse, ecumenical secretary of the FABC Office of Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.

Taking "the five loaves and two fish program" that Bishop Pujasumarta described as an example, their declaration also pledged to develop a variety of "sharing plans and projects" at the local community level.

The Indonesian bishop told UCA News he initiated the movement for the poor in 1992, while serving as vicar general of Semarang archdiocese. He said the sharing program was aimed at students in Catholic schools, who saved and collected money for poor students and their families. "Since I've learned about reality and the Eucharist in various countries, this meeting seems to me a 'living catechism' on the Eucharist," he said.

Father LaRousse, also a presenter at the forum, told UCA News it was a good experience of how Christians from diverse countries reflect on living the Eucharist in Asia.

"From my experience in Davao, Philippines, I expect bishops will hear the good result of this forum," he said.

11 comments:

Jorge Raimundo said...

I didn't know that protestants also have jesuits...

Anonymous said...

"The keynote speaker, Jesuit Father Michael Amaladoss, had pointed out that the Eucharist is basically a "community meal," a symbolic action that he said has ritual, social and mystic levels. "

This Jesuit Fr. Amaladoss is a heretic, and has been labeled as such by traditionalist Catholics for years.
If I am not mistaken, (if he is the same person), he is in his mid 70's by now, and was a strong favorite to replace Pedro Arrupe as Father General of the Jesuits in 1983, a posting that went to Hans Kolvenbach (now 81) who was alittle less dissident and radical than Pedro Arupe, and less so than Amaladoss.
The good thing in all this is that all the Indian and . S. Korean and Filipino religious Orders which have "gone radical liberal" over the past 10-15 years are now suffering the same effects of their change in direction that the USA Orders suffered 35 years ago...a sharp decline in vocations.
It is noted that some major Orders in India of both priests and nuns (those which have become increasingly liberal), discarding the habit, radical lifestyle, dissent etc., have a serious crisis on their hands with regards to the decline in vocations.
Some Indian Orders of nuns which have radicalized have gone from having 100 sisters in training, to having 10-12 in training. The same as which happened in the USA. Soon they will have 1-2.
That is the good news.
The bad news, is that there is still an aging army of radicals in Asia, just like in Europe and the USA pushing the garbage from Vatican II.
THirty-five years from now, the situation if not corrected for India, the Phillipines and S.Korea will be the same there as it is for the USA and Europe today...except the small pockets of communities that have remained faithful.

Fortunatly the Jesuits are starting to decline in India, just as elsewhere. Let's pray that it's accelerated. That is one Order that Faithful Catholics will be happy to see gone.

Jordanes said...

Father Amaladoss' doctrine of the Eucharist bears no resemblance at all to the Church's doctrine. Back to catechism classes for this sorry heretic, who evidently has no business teaching others when he himself doesn't know the truth.

Anonymous said...

The bad news, is that there is still an aging army of radicals in Asia, just like in Europe and the USA pushing the garbage from Vatican II.This garbage has nothing to do with the Second Vatican Council, which was an ecumenical council of the universal Church, approved by a successor of Peter in communion with the apostolic college.

Anonymous said...

Why is it always the Jesuits?

First Liberation theology then Fr Jenkins and his supporters.... now this junk...

God Save Us from the errors they spread.

Carlos Antonio Palad said...

"The good thing in all this is that all the Indian and . S. Korean and Filipino religious Orders which have "gone radical liberal" over the past 10-15 years are now suffering the same effects of their change in direction that the USA Orders suffered 35 years ago...a sharp decline in vocations."

I'm here in the Philippines and I can tell you that in Asia, there are a lot of vocations still. The frightening thing is that most of them are being educated in a kind of "Catholicism" cut off from its roots and with almost no understanding of the Church prior to Vatican II. It is a pious (Eucharistic and Marian), politically aware and socially active but liturgically and theologically shallow "Catholicism" that has little of the grandeur and ethos of traditional Catholicism. I wonder how long this whole thing can be sustained. (China is a different case -- China, of course, was under the Tridentine Rite until the early 1990's)

I haven't gotten around to writing about it but I am aware that there are continuing tensions in India between conservative Eastern Rite Catholics and the more "Westernizing" Malabars and the Latin-Rite Catholics, precisely over the question of liturgical propriety and praxis.

No less than Abp. Malcolm Ranjith has complained about the lack of serious theologizing in Asia; unfortunately, Rome is far away and the Asian Churches do as they please.

Londiniensis said...

Let us pray that a counter-reformation can coalesce round ++Malcolm Ranjith once he is installed in Colombo.

LeonG said...

"Back to catechism classes for this sorry heretic, who evidently has no business teaching others when he himself doesn't know the truth.'

Unfortunately, and without exaggeration, most of the priests I have known since the early 1970s fit this description perfectly.

LeonG said...

In SE Asia, there are many lay neo-catholics on parish councils and in other influential parochial positions who have not an inkling of what catholicism is. They pontificate ignorantly on the Vatican Councils as though the church began then and they exhibit more protestant tendencies than anything else. Some of their presbyters are even worse - I have corrected a few on occasion but they blandly write it all off as some inspiration of the mythical conciliar spirit. The neo-modernist post-conciliar church in SE Asia is mostly embarrassing.

Anonymous said...

Carlos,
I live in India. The thologians are "far ahead" of the layfolk. But they have a way of getting layfolk hooked ie they give them more liturgical roles in the Mass.

When you talk of China and the Tridentine Rite, were the ordinations and consecrations in the Underground Church being conducted in the Tridentine Rite upto the 1990s? Do you know when this rite was discarded?

Anonymous said...

Amaladoss comes from the state of Tamil Nadu where till today Catholics harbor caste hang ups from their Hindu past. There seems to be admiration, and perhaps envy, for the Brahminical status of Hindu priests.Is this why there is the thrust to Hinduize the Catholic faith? The late Victor Kulanday touched on this whole issue in his book The Paganization of the Church in India. Hinduism, for many years, has been referred to in certain Catholic quarters as the "higher religion" (!)
It isn't surprising that these people regard the Eucharist as basically a community meal. After services at a Hindu temple, a token "spiritual" food called "Prasad" is distributed to the attending devotees.