4 Gifts & 3 Responsibilities
H.G Bishop Moussa
1 - Through Eucharist I will be abiding in the Lord.
2 - Through Eucharist I can take the intercessions of the saints.
3 - Through the Eucharist Iíll become a member in the body of the Lord Ė
thatís the church.
4 - And through the Eucharist I am going to be saved Ė salvation.
These four gifts are the gifts of the Eucharist.
Unified with the Lord.
Communion with the Saints - asking their intercessions.
A member in the body of Christ united to the believers around me.
Saved by the blood of the Lord by the sacrifice of the Lord.
But these gifts are not without responsibilities. These responsibilities can
1 - Spiritual strife. As mentioned in the Bible, examine yourself. One
must examine himself before taking from the Eucharist.
2 - Service inside the church.
3 - Witnessing outside the church.
These are the gifts and the responsibilities of the Eucharist.
And we need to contemplate upon these seven points.
(1) Abiding in Christ:
The Eucharist gives me the top of knowledge of knowing Christ. Why?
Because we start by knowing Christ by intellect first and then after
knowing something about Christ we start to have an affectionate relation
through our hearts our prayers our communication with God Jesus
Christ. But this is not sufficient. We go deeper in our knowledge of Christ
in having experiences in our every day life different situations of life. I
experience the Lord in my everyday life. Difficult situations and this is
the knowledge out of experience not intellect and not emotions but
But the talk is coming when in the Eucharist I am uniting myself with the
Lord and this is the top of knowledge - maximum because I am going to
know Jesus Christ from his inside and he will know me from my inside.
We are going to be one. Because he said ďWhoever eats my body and
drinks my blood will abide in me and I in himĒ. This is the top of
knowledge this knowledge out of union. First itís just intellect - data.
Yeh, there is one God, this God trion and the trion God is having Father
Son and the Holy Spirit and the Son is the infinite wisdom and he is the
law. He is the second person in Gods head and then he was incarnated
and became man and was crucified on my behalf in order to fulfil the
penalty of death instead of me and to shed His blood in order to cleanse
me by His blood. There is in the Old Testament a saying without shedding
blood no remission of sins and then He died and then He was
resurrected, He ascended to heaven, sent the Holy Spirit and founded
the church. Data. Just information, this is the informative Christianity.
Its good, sure, because without this data Iím not going to have the proper
faith in Christ. Therefore itís the intellectual level of knowledge.
Then I move deeper to have the affectionate knowledge. I start to speak
with Jesus Christ my Lord. I start to love Him, to feel His love, to be in
touch with Him day and night, to speak with Him, to listen to His voice in
the gospel. And to listen to His voice inside myself speaking in my heart.
Iím going to love Him. Iím going to sing hymns for Him. Because there is
now affectionate knowledge not only intellectual.
Not yet there is a third level, that is the experiential knowledge. It is
different because I had many difficult situations in my life. I asked the
Lord to be with me and He was with me and He got me out of this
difficult situation and He transformed the curse to be a blessing, the
darkness to be light, the enslavement to be liberty. He gave me a lot of
spiritual gifts. Now I experience the Lord in my everyday life, in
different situations of life. He is not God in the highest. He is not God in
my heart. He is God in my conduct and my behaviour and situations of
life experiences. I was entering an exam and I felt his presence. I was
attacked by certain sin and I felt that he could get me out of it. I was
enslaved by smoking, by anything else, by sensual types of lust and love
and so on but now he liberated me. I was sad in a certain situation when
I prayed He gave me condolences and peace. This experience is not yet
finished now in Eucharist I have the Lord Himself inside me. I am no
more just a human being. I am a divine human being because I have the
Lord inside of me. God is residing inside of me. The unlimited came to
the limited the infinite came to the finite and therefore I feel that I am
enjoying something super-transcendent something I cannot imagine Ė
unbelievable. This word that you always say when you are surprised Ė
something unbelievable. Yes, this unbelievable is now believable. And
not only to be just belief but to be practiced and to be felt. To have the
Lord inside of us Jesus Christ inside us. He will change my life. He will
give me, so to speak a super power. To be supernatural, why can you say
no to sin. Because you are supernatural through Jesus Christ residing
inside of you not through yourself. And this is Eucharist. Eucharist simply
makes the limited person having unlimited capacities through Jesus
Christ residing inside of me. Therefore this is the first gift that I can take
through Eucharist and through our beloved Lord Jesus Christ. He was not
incarnated just to live inside St Mary for nine months and He leaves us -
No. He was not incarnated unifying Himself to a human nature and then
He leaves the human nature before ascending to heaven Ė No. He didnít
ascend to heaven by His divinity without His humanity, He took His
humanity with Him. Now itís a union once and forever between humanity
and divinity. Yes, in Jesus Christ its another type of union but we are
enjoying a spark, a power, an energy out of this union. And you know
that Jesus when he resurrected from the dead he said to Mary Magdalene
I am going to my Father who is your Father. My God who is your God. He
is trying to say that I am one with the Father. The divinity and humanity
in Jesus Christ Ė the union differs because He is through His body the
fullness of divinity is dwelling. But we are not gods, we are still human
beings. He is the Son of God by nature. I am the son of God by adoption.
Much more different isnít it? Not the same blood is it? Even in everyday
life when someone is adopted itís different to someone who is from the
same nature or same body of the dad and the mum. And therefore, yes,
we are unified to the God, but, a big but, we are still human beings and
itís much different to being the Son of God capital ĎSí and the son of God
small Ďsí. Capital ĎSí that is Jesus Christ being one with the Father one of
the Holy Trinity. United humanity and divinity, fullness of divinity and to
be the son small Ďsí a type of adoption. He adopted us, He got us from
the garbage and He put us on the chairs. Therefore, this is the first gift
that we have in our Lord Jesus Christ Ė abiding in the Lord. Imagine, I
canít leave this point so I will leave it for you to contemplate upon. You
are going to have divinity inside of you. You canít say I am weak. Weak
why when God is inside of you? I am enslaved. Enslaved why when God is
inside of you and He is the liberator and He can set you free. You canít
say I am sad when you have all the peace inside of you Ė the Prince of
Peace. I am puzzled, why? You have the light of the world inside of you.
Yes we are in different situations having these feelings but quickly we go
to the Lord, we take the Holy Communion, we enjoy the presence of the
Lord inside us. Then all these problems are going to vanish and disappear
even if more and more are coming on the road I am sure, through Jesus
Christ, I can defeat that world, the world at large.
Abiding in the Lord.
(2) Intercessions of the Saints:
This is something that also gives you honour privilege and power. You are
not one you are many because all the saints are with you. Watching your
struggle. Exactly like what was ok near the gymnasium in the days of
persecution when they started to throw the Christians and then they
opened the dens of the lions and the lions come out and start to eat the
Christians something agonising and the pagans in the stadium are
clapping. Happy because the Christians are killed and sacrificed by the
lions. Lions here are a symbol of Satan. And the Christians are struggling
with Satan. And Satan is trying to overcome us. But donít be afraid
because thousands of saints are in the stadium and heaven itself is
looking upon you caring for you. Itís the cloud of witnesses as mentioned
in the Bible. They are witnesses watching us. Not watching us passively,
encouraging us, praying for us, interceding on our behalf in order to
defeat the lion that is Satan. Satan lost his power through Jesus Christ
donít forget that you are not only under the supervision and watching
and support of the saints but you have Jesus inside of you. Therefore, St
Ignatius the Theophorus said when the lions are hesitant to eat me I will
tease it in order to let it eat me. He was ready and he said I want to be a
bread for the Lord. They were ready to die simply because they know
that after this there is eternity and in Jesus Christ we have not only this
life with God but eternity. And he said ďwhoever eats my body and
drinks my blood will have eternal life and I will resurrect him from the
deadĒ. Therefore, you have a lot of witnesses watching and supporting
and interceding and praying. Take care the clouds are high but near. The
clouds are really outside the globe but very close. Thatís why with the
aeroplane we go above the clouds. And even The World Trade Centre
and Empire State Building has something metal that plays with the
clouds. The clouds are separated but near. The saints also went above to
heaven but they are very close to us. The clouds are always white and
the saints are holy and white. The clouds are always giving rains and the
saints are giving blessings to us and therefore we are living in this cloud
of saints. Even church makes the heavens above and the stars are a blue
colour and Jesus Christ is embracing the whole universe therefore
evangelists and you find the Saints are all over all around the church.
Come in touch with the saints ask for their intercessions. I remember
once I had a serious problem in my life something related to my future
life. Why didnít I ask St Mary to take care of it? St Mary is so calm, it took
one month and two and three and nothing was solved, the problem was
more complicated. So I came before her icon and said to her how come
you have left me and you must interfere and so on. Now while I was
coming outside the church I found the icon of St George. When I saw St
George I went to speak to him but then I got embarrassed from St Mary. I
said how can you let me speak to someone else, I will not speak to him.
The next day she made like a miracle in my life, really. The Saints are
very close and very near and they love us from the bottom of their
hearts. And that is why in the liturgy you find the deacon telling us that
there are saints with us and angels and look to the east and you will find
the Cherubim and Seraphim. And Abouna when he is finished he lets the
angel go the angel of sacrifice remember us in front of the Lord. Actually
heavens came to earth and there is some sort of unity between heaven
and earth through the Eucharist.
(3) Members in the Body of the Lord:
You feel that you have become a member in the body of Christ. As
mentioned in Corinthians 1:10 that we drink from one cup and eat from
one bread. And when we pray only on one bread. I prayed with another
Orthodox churches and I found them putting three or four breads and
prayed on it because they say there are a lot of people and you find
there bread is very small. We would never do this. We say it has to be
one bread so that we can all be one in Christ. Now this oneness in Christ
gives you the support all the believers around you are praying for you
and supporting you and serving you and loving you, caring for you sharing
everything with you. This feeling of oneness in the church. Yes we are
different but we are homogenous. Each member or organ in the human
body has a different function, different structure. But this difference is
not division. Itís just different tasks for the benefit of the body at large.
And therefore we live this oneness in the Lord. Yes I am different from
you, we have different gifts, different personalities and despite that we
are one in Christ. And this difference gives some sort of richness,
variety. If we are all one organ repeated we can not form a body as St
Paul said. If we are all hands, hands, hands, we can not form a body. If
we are all eyes, eyes, eyes this does not make a body. There must be
eyes, ears, nose and so on. And therefore we differ but we are
homogenous. We have the same goal and always this oneness comes
through something that the fathers taught us. They say if this is A and
this is B and this is C as long as we are on the circumference we are
separated from each other. To get these three balls for example closer
let A come towards the centre B move towards the centre, C move
towards the centre. As long as we are moving towards the centre we are
going to be close, close, close and in the centre only we are going to be
unified in Christ. This can be the husband this can be the wife this can
be the kids. Really, they can be the churches they can be the members
of any congregation or any committee. When we have one goal that is
our Lord Jesus Christ then we are going to be unified and we are going to
become one in Christ.
Now, the last gift is Salvation. And its something you hear in every
liturgy. After Abouna finishes the mass he lifts the plate / tray with the
body of the Lord and says given for us for Salvation, remission of sins and
eternal life to those who partake from it. Salvation, because this is the
blood of the Lord. Look, the blood of the Lord that we take through the
Eucharist saves us how?
1. The blood forgives the past Ė itís in the Bible, without shedding blood
there is no forgiveness of sins.
2. It purifies the present. The blood of Jesus purifies us from every sin. It
purifies us now.
3. Sanctifies the future. Jesus to sanctify us suffered the pains outside
the doors of Jerusalem.
4. Gives God to abide in me and I in him. Now I am going to be stable in
5. Gives me eternal life.
What else can give us these five gifts other than the blood of Jesus
Lets say them again.
1. Forgives the past
2. Purifies the present
3. Sanctifies the future, these are verses from the Bible.
4. Abide in me and abide in Him
5. Gives me eternal life Ė and this is the salvation.
Yes, itís very good to have all these gifts from the Eucharist but no gift is
without responsibility. No pain without a gain and also no gain without
pain. But the pain here is lovely because you are going to have a lot of
gains out of this.
(1) Spiritual Strife:
If you want to enjoy the blessings of the Eucharist you have to have some
spiritual struggle & strife. Look His Holiness Pope Shenouda says ďwho is
the spiritual person? He is the one whose body is controlled by his spirit
and his spirit is controlled by the Holy Spirit. Again? Who is the spiritual
person? The one whose body is controlled by his spirit - the human spirit.
And his spirit is controlled by the Holy Spirit. There is much difference
between the human spirit and the Holy Spirit. The human spirit is limited
or unlimited? Limited. Sinful or not sinful? Sinful, it can sin. And
therefore despite we start by saying the body is controlled by the spirit
but this spirit needs the Holy Spirit to control us. And this is our spiritual
strive. You are all the time struggling against your body, your lust, your
senses. Against those sins that are in this world. And this struggle is
supported by your spirit belonging to what and your spirit is supported
by the Holy Spirit who can purify you and give you the power for self
control. They always put labels saying ďSay NO to drugsĒ They are saying
NO how? Say NO to smoking or to whatÖ etc. Abstain from sexual
immoralities. I remember I was on a craft with Anba Thomas and while
we were on the airplane I was sitting with Anba Thomas and a third
person in the third seat. He was holding a newspaper. The big heading of
the newspaper, Anba Thomas pointed it out to me and said ďlook at the
heading of the newspaperĒ Ė the main headline. So I looked and found it
was had written ĎThe Only Protection from HIV is abstinenceí. The ONLY
protection Ė they are not tricking them by saying Ďsafe sexí no. There is
no such thing as safe sex. They say donít hang your life on a piece of
rubber. Really, they say that to them in America now. And they say
instead of safe sex, save sex. But how, take abstain, Iím weak. Yes, you
are weak but God is strong. If you have the Holy Spirit then you will be
successful in your spiritual strive. You are going to nourish yourself
spiritually, you are going to confess whenever you sin, you are going to
try not to sin again, you are going to nourish yourself through the Bible
through the church sacraments, through the church meetings, the
church and spiritual readings and so on. You are going to nourish yourself
spiritually in order to be fit for having the Lord living inside you.
Therefore this is one of the responsibilities that we have. Spiritual
It is a responsibility being a member in the body you have to be serving.
No member without function except the so called in our body Ė the
appendix. The appendix in the past had a function. It was digesting the
cellulous when we were vegetarians. After we started eating meat and
entered the crowd and the cholesterol and these things that was it all
these things began to shrink, shrink, shrink disuse atrophy so it became a
little thing whenever the surgeon can get access to it even if it is not
inflamed he will remove it as it has no use. Itís an appendix without a
function. So you are not an appendix, you are a member. Being a
member in the body of Christ you have something to do. You may
preach, you may teach, you may serve the poor, you may serve the sick
people, you may take care of certain cases, you may educate the
children, a lot of functions. I leave you to read Romans 12 to find twelve
functions there. Twelve services in Romans 12. These are services inside
the church. Donít say I am not a servant, you can be a servant. The
church is full of service and you have to be an active member, a working
member, a giving one Ė this is responsibility number two. I canít be a
passive one who enters and prays and has communion and goes home, I
donít speak to anyone and donít want problems. You are very passive Ė
you have to do something in the church and we can select for you a
special type of service. And you can discover a type of service to
participate in. And that is why the second responsibility of Eucharist is
Last is witnessing. We are not going to isolate you from society. This is
very wrong. You have to witness for the Lord in society. And as you
listen to the liturgy you hear the priest saying for every time you eat this
bread and drink thisÖ you what proclaim Ė what does proclaim mean (te
basharoony be mawty) you proclaim my death so you are not telling
Jesus Christ to the Christians and the believers they already know it but
you are proclaiming the death of Christ to those who are around you.
They ask you what is this and why did He die and you start to speak
about the redemption and how God became man in order to redeem us
and also to dwell inside us and to teach us and therefore we are proud of
Jesus Christ God incarnate because God became near to us and now He is
ready to be inside us through the Eucharist. You proclaim my death and
confess my resurrection and remember me till I come therefore I have
something to tell the world. Therefore we are longing to have many
people to become Christian. The world now is in bad need of Christ and
Christ is waiting for everybody to work with Him in building the kingdom
of God and preparing humanity for the second advent of Christ. You have
a role inside the church service outside the church is witnessing for the
Lord by your deeds by your model. Look if you have some concentration
very quickly we are having six analogies for the believer and his role in
the world and in society. One, He said you are the light of the church.
Did He say the salt of the church? Or the salt of the earth Ė all the earth.
Number three He said you are the ambassadors of Christ another time He
told us you are the aroma, which means you are the flavour you are the
perfume. Another time He said you are the message read by all people Ė
message. And another time He said you are like the yeast or the leaven
in the dough. Whatís the difference between the leaven and the dough?
Leaven has the bacteria. Like when I was in the monastery making the
korban they gave us the leaven to activate it in some warm water. So we
would put it in boiling water. Straight away the bacteria would die. I
canít see if it has died or not. It is something which is microscopic so we
then put the yeast in the dough and leave it for a few hours and when we
return we find the dough as it is because the bacteria is gone. You have
life inside as Jesus Christ for me to live as Christ He is my life. If you are
a living Christian, if you have life inside you, Christ inside you, then you
are going to witness for the Lord all the people around you will see the
light of the Lord shining through you and they are going to glorify God.
QUESTIONS & COMMENTS:
Sayedna when you said that the Spiritual Person is controlled by his spirit
and this spirit is controlled by the Holy Spirit you said that the persons
spirit is limited it can sin Ė the human spirit so this is not the verse that
says ďthe born of God does not sinĒ?
You put here ďBorn of GodĒ. So you have put who here now body and
human spirit and plus who? Plus God. As long as God is inside me I donít
sin. But, a big But, God is not always inside of me. I sometimes say to God
close your eyes for a bit I want to commit this sin and I have my free will
or not? I have my free will even in baptism after we baptize a baby and
he is born of Christ he received the second birth. Does this mean that sin
was cancelled inside of him. No. The old nature is still inside him but in a
very limited way. And the new man in Christ was created in him. Now,
day after day, year after year according to his free will he will get either
the old nature to flourish and suppress the new or the new to flourish
and suppress the old therefore itís the struggle still working God is inside
us but we have our free will still. Therefore we may commit sins. But
after I commit sin I go back to the Lord and repent.
Sayedna could you please give us a brief history of the recent history of
the ecumenical movement for people who are interested in ecumenical
issues or ecumenical affairs, do you advise us to have combined activities
with other Christian denominations or what is your advise on that?
Leave this question for a while if there are any questions about the
Eucharist and donít forget this question.
Sayedna in regards to the Eucharist is there any precautions because the
tradition in Egypt after taking the communion there are some
Yes there are precautions mainly are spiritual in order not to commit any
sin after having communion because I have a blessing inside of me a
power inside me take care of sins this is number one. Number two, the
church in order to remind you all the time that you took a blessing you
took a gift you took God Himself we say donít walk bare foot or you may
bleed and if you bleed this is not good because you must try to preserve
the blood inside, but if it happens accidentally then its no problem
because imagine after we pray on the baptistery the water for the
baptistery has the mayroon. There is a prayer that abouna prays so the
water can return as it was. So God can take care of himself its no
problem. But it is a matter of keeping you alert. Donít take a bath, donít
swim please remember that you took the body of Christ. Something like
that, itís a matter of giving you the opportunity to concentrate on the
gift that you took. But it should not be taken too literally but it is good to
be committed to this. They say donít take out the pip from your mouth,
why remember that you took the body of the Lord. So be cautious but at
the sane time more important than these materialistic things is to be
cautious spiritually. You can let bad words come out of your mouth that
is more dangerous than the pips.
Sayedna we know that baptism is death and resurrection with the Lord so
why our old nature didnít die completely and vanish?
I just mentioned if our old nature could disappear and vanish completely
then I lost my free will. Right? I have created a puppet. It comes out and
never does wrong. You ask him does he love Christ and he says I canít
love anyone else. So commit a sin and he says he cannot. Do you wish
you could? I havenít my free will. Are you going to the Lord by your own
decision. My decision why, He is the one who has made me like this. I am
going to lose my free will. God is giving you both the old and the new.
Leaving the old suppressing it by baptism and creating the human side
after that either you flourish the new and get it to be prevalent and the
old you are all the time suppressing it or reverse it is up to you to
Sayedna a lot of times we hear we died with Christ on the cross and
actually when we partake of the communion we are in the body and the
blood I was wondering if you can explain that?
Thatís in the body of Christ, itís a good phrase it means that we are going
to be members in the body of Christ because this is the body of Christ.
The korban becomes the body of Christ therefore, it is right to say we
became part of this korbana and this korbana now is inside us unified
with us. So I think this is right we are going to be parts inside the body of
Christ and the body of Christ will be inside all of us. Therefore, it is a
matter of union so simply we are united together. We were united
together and we became members in the body of Christ that is this
korbana is now the body of Christ.
Sayedna with the point on membership and the circle that your grace
drew you said that there could be three different parties we could have
father, mother and children or the church and the congregation and
weíre all moving to the same goal to be unified in Christ what if one
party isnít, how do you get the other parties to have the same goals as
Iíll draw another triangle like that. Look this is Jesus Christ and husband
and wife. There is love tracing from Jesus to the husband and from the
husband to Jesus. From Jesus to the wife and from the wife to Jesus.
Then it will pass from the husband to to wife and from the wife to the
husband. Now let me break this. The husband lost his relation with God
what will occur? The base of the triangle will drop down but not yet
broken because still the wife is in good relation with Jesus now if this
link is broken then this house will fall down. Therefore, if one of the two
partners is sticking to the Lord the house will still be in tact. Yes, itís
agitating and itís suffering but still in tact. If the two lost their relation
with Jesus Christ then this house will fall down. Thatís why we ask one
of the two partners to be patient and to always try to be in touch with
the Lord and to pray and to wait in some sort of durability otherwise this
house will fall down. And that is what happens, you find the house fell
down because the two partnersÖI was reconciling a couple in which the
wife was totally dependant on her mother. The father of the son told the
mother to let the problem move on. Let the children reconcile and to
stop listening to the devil. The mother said Satan is here and here and
started to kiss Satan. We couldnít reconcile the children until after the
death of the mother. So anyone having no relation with God will
destabilise the home. If the two partners are leaving God itís finished.
Sayedna could you please give us a brief history of the recent history of
the ecumenical movement for people who are interested in ecumenical
issues or ecumenical affairs, do you advise us to have combined activities
with other Christian denominations or what is your advice on that?
We are in an era now called the era of ecumenicalism where we have
relations of love between the Christians all over the world and we have
ecumenical bodies and we as the Coptic church are members in these
ecumenical bodies. We are members in the World Council of Churches
and His Holiness was one of the presidents for seven years for the World
Council of Churches. We are members in the Middle East Council of
Churches and His Holiness is still one of the four presidents of this Middle
East Council. We are members in the All Africa Council of Churches. I
know that you are members in the Australian and the American and the
Canadian Councilís of Churches. Sure it is very good to be in love with
the Christians all over but in love we are one, in faith and doctrines we
differ. Therefore, we are starting dialogues. In the days of His Holiness
Pope Shenouda we are in dialogue with most of the Christians all over
the Christendom. We are in dialogue with the Catholic Church many
years ago. In dialogue with the Greek Orthodox and the family of the
Orthodox with the Anglican, Presbyterian, Lutheran, the reformed
churches, with the Swedish churches, the Norwegian churches we are in
dialogue with all the churches of the world. But this dialogue means love
and then concerning faith we start to negotiate and discuss the
differences and tell them what our belief is on each issue. We reached
some good achievements with the fifteen churches of the Greek we
reached an agreed statement we are signing it now. After that we and
the Greek are going to be one. With the Catholic we reached to and
agreement concerning Christology of Christ. We studied purgatory and
we studied the procession of the Holy Spirit and actually our doctrines
are very precise because they are straight forward and biblical and
patristic. And therefore we benefit for sure by giving our Orthodox view
to these beloved brothers and sisters and they are starting to appreciate
it and then weigh it and as I notice they start to neglect these negative
things. They have stopped talking about purgatory now. I was speaking
with one of my Catholic friends called Anba Youhanna while we were in
dialogue about purgatory we went out to eat and we were arguing with
love about purgatory which is against redemption and against the bible.
So I said to Sayedna when you go to console someone who has lost
somebody do you tell them that there beloved one has gone to be burnt
in purgatory is that a comfort to them? He said Anba Moussa I donít bring
up that topic be quiet. Yes they start to neglect purgatory because it is
anti-biblical. So that is a good achievement alone. With all other
denominations we are in dialogue its therefore love and we have an
ecumenical youth committee in Egypt they participate together in
anything that are not doctrinal. Just the love some hymns and so on to
express the Christianity is one religion but we differ afterwards in other
doctrines and we come into dialogue with them concerning this. And that
is why we encourage the ecumenical thing but we are not ready to move
from one denomination to the other we must stick to our church and our
doctrines because they are very correct.
Our church believes in one baptism but how come when someone joins
our church they are rebaptised?
Itís not rebaptism we believe in one baptism. We say that the baptism
was done under certain circumstances that is the mutual anathemas. You
know the anathema that is the ex-communication and the two churches
are ex-communicating each other in history. Now these anathemas are to
be lifted. Even with the Greek we had anathemas but we started now
through the agreed statement to lift the anathemas then we are going to
accept each other without repeating the baptism. Actually it is not
repetition we donít consider it legal because of the anathema Ė there
was ex-communication and they believe the same thing. If you pray
things will move because we are with the Greek it is finished and with
the Catholic we need some negotiations because it is an illegal thing.
When you read the agreement with the Greek Orthodox you will find a
big item called Lifting ex-communications pray so that it can be lifted.
The Catholic church is a closed circle writing the sacraments and the
Orthodox Church the sacraments are valid inside the church. If you move
from this to that and that to this then you need to lift the anathemas
otherwise the baptism must be done. The church sacraments are valid
inside this closed circle if you move to another circle enter from the
door of baptism you are going to move your circle.
But I am not really asking about change of denomination if the guy is still
in the same denomination but will he have the Holy Spirit after baptism?
Sure, and the sacraments in the tradition of the church I mean the
Catholic, Greek Orthodox and the churches that believe in sacraments.
For example the Protestant church they donít believe in sacraments,
even the baptism is not considered a sacrament (in the Protestant
church) he himself says it is not a sacrament and is not important Ė how
can I consider it important. That is why if he comes to me he should be
baptised so that he can have the baptism that is a sacrament. The
baptism he has had is not a sacrament. They never call it a sacrament,
they call it a symbol of Christianity. We say no itís not a symbol itís a
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