June 26, 2012 Martin Mallon (Ireland) Martin's previous articles
The Eucharist is Jesus, the Eucharist is Communion between Jesus and each individual and also with one another. There cannot be communion without dialogue.
The Church must have communion between the members of the Church who are the body of Christ. This communion cannot take place without dialogue. In the first case the individual prays (talks) to Jesus who listens and replies to the listening individual - dialogue. In the second case the members of the Church discuss concerns – dialogue.
The theme for the International Eucharistic Congress in Dublin was “The Eucharist: Communion with Christ and with one another” and was taken from paragraph 7 of the Dogmatic Constitution Lumen Gentium. In this way the Fiftieth International Eucharistic Congress acknowledged the need for dialogue within the Church; all the People of God should be involved in this dialogue as the Holy Spirit speaks through the whole Church. The hierarchy, whose members are included in the People of God, must be involved in this dialogue or they are ignoring the Eucharist and they are failing to fulfil their mission.
The Eucharist is Communion therefore there must be dialogue or else the Eucharistic Congress was held under false premises. “The Eucharist: Communion with....one another” is not a hierarchical structure, it is one of love and understanding with each person being seen as equal in the eyes of God.
The Congress appears to have been a successful and worthwhile event, especially for the faithful in the Irish Church. However, the issue of dialogue was not addressed in a meaningful manner.
Why do the Irish bishops refuse to dialogue with the Association of Catholic Priests (ACP)? If the Eucharist is Communion with Christ and with one another how can this dialogue not take place between the bishops and the association that represents over 1000 diocesan priests?
There is a problem in the functioning of our Church.
We must ask ourselves what would Jesus do if He was here in the flesh? Would he talk to the ACP? Would he be prepared to listen and talk to people about disputed issues in the Church? I believe the answer to these questions is “Yes He would.”
If the teachings of Vatican II, such as the collegiality of the bishops, were implemented it is probable that the problem of lack of proper communion and dialogue would vanish. The bishops would be listened too, they would be encouraged to voice ideas and concerns, confidence would grow and the bishops would be encouraged to help the laity to fulfil the Council’s promise by treating all the baptised as the People of God.
Jesus was here in the flesh would He implement the teachings of Vatican II? Of
course He would, that is why He sent the Holy Spirit to guide the Council.