Diocese pioneers Eucharistic hospitality

Eucharistic hospitality

In a pioneering move, the Diocese of Osnabrück in Germany has become the first Catholic diocese to release official guidelines on the concept of Eucharistic hospitality.

The diocese recently published a comprehensive booklet outlining the conditions under which all Christians within the diocese can participate in a Catholic Eucharist or Protestant communion celebration during ecumenically significant occasions.

The moves marks a significant departure from the traditional practice, where the reception of the Eucharist was reserved exclusively for Catholic believers.

Bishop Franz-Josef Bode approved the publication of these guidelines before his resignation in March.

Bishop Bode emphasised the need for opportunities for mutual hospitality, especially in light of the ongoing quest for full church fellowship and the growing understanding between different denominations.

The Ecumenical Church Congress held in Osnabrück mid-June provided the occasion for this historic release. On Saturday evening during the event, both Catholic and Protestant communities officially extended invitations for inclusive practices.

The nearly 40-page booklet combines two theological essays by Bishop Bode and Osnabrück theologian Margit Eckholt.

It also incorporates personal experiences and reflections from Protestant and Catholic Christians, offering readers a diverse range of perspectives. In addition, the booklet includes references to pertinent theological texts.

The material aims to assist Christians in forming a well-founded opinion, enabling them to decide on suitable occasions whether to extend an invitation to the Eucharist or Communion as a celebrant, or to accept such an invitation as a believer.



CathNews New Zealand

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