Recently, on account of the outbreak of the pandemic of Swine Flu, the matter of possible transmission of sicknesses through Holy Communion was also -unnecessarily- brought up. Unfortunately, with an unbecoming vocabulary, a sarcastic attitude and argumentation that was not in the least well-meaning, one more attempt has been made to dismantle our Faith, at a time when we have no other support to hold on to. So, with this opportunity, I think it proper to provide certain truths, which are necessary for preserving the priceless treasure of our Faith inside us.
Our Church has been transmitting the grace of Her Mysteries for two thousand years, in the familiar, very humane and simultaneously blessed way, for the "healing and therapy of soul and body". She has never needed to speculate with the contemporary logic of irreverent doubting, but has been living day to day with the experience of affirmation of a supreme miracle. How is it ever possible for communion with God to be a cause of sickness or even the slightest harm? How is it ever possible for the Body and the Blood of our Lord and God to pollute our body and our blood? How is it possible for a daily experience of over two thousand years to be quashed by mere rationalism and the cold shallowness of our time?
Faithful people - both healthy and sick - have been receiving Holy Communion for centuries, distributed by the same holy Communion spoon - which is never washed and never disinfected - and never has anything been observed. Priests who serve in hospitals, even in hospitals for contagious diseases, all distribute Holy Communion to the faithful and then consume the remaining contents of the Chalice with reverence, and all of them enjoy long lives. Holy Communion is everything that we as a Church and as people hold holy; it is the supreme medication for soul and body. That is likewise the teaching and the experience of our Church.
Those who are distrustful of the miracle of the Lord's Resurrection, all those who scorn His birth by a Virgin, all those who deny the fragrance that emanates from holy relics, all those who show contempt towards everything holy and sacred, all those who conspire against our Church, all those who seek to eradicate the slightest trace of faith from our souls will naturally strive to exploit the opportunity to also insult the most sacred mystery of the Divine Eucharist.
The fact that the Anglicans and the Catholics have decided for precautionary reasons to cease the distribution of holy communion in England and New Zealand respectively, if true, is not a show of prudence and freedom - as some would maintain - but instead, it actuallyhighlights in the best possible way the huge distance between our Church, which is eucharistic in Her theology and Her life and who lives, believes and preaches that Mystery/Sacrament, and the remaining christian groups, which are indirectly confessing the absence of Grace and God's signs from their so-called sacraments, as well as the loss of their ecclesiastic identity. Life without a Mystery resembles a serious illness without a remedy.
Unfortunately, the big problem is not the flu virus - as the Mass Media are wont to advertise - nor is the virus of worldwide panic - as supported by the medical unions; it is actually the virus of irreverence and the microbe of disbelief. And the best vaccine is our frequent participation in the mystery of Holy Communion, "with a clean conscience" and an "irreprehensible" one. Our response to this unholy provocation of our time is our very way of life.
It would be advisable, if our spiritual fathers could exhort the faithful (with due discernment, and provided there are no spiritual obstacles) to receive Holy Communion more frequently during these difficult times, while those of us who already have our spiritual fathers' blessings should also approach the Cup of Life more frequently. but always "with the fear of God, very much faith and sincere love".