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Metousiosis is a Greek term (μετουσίωσις) that means a change of ousia ( οὐσία , "essence, inner reality").
The ancient Greek language includes the forms of Greek used in Ancient Greece and the ancient world from around the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE. It is often roughly divided into the Archaic period, Classical period, and Hellenistic period. It is antedated in the second millennium BCE by Mycenaean Greek and succeeded by Medieval Greek.
Ousia is a philosophical and theological term, originally used in Ancient Greek philosophy, then later in Christian theology. It was used by various Ancient Greek philosophers, like Plato and Aristotle, as a primary designation for philosophical concepts of essence or substance. In contemporary philosophy, it is analogous to English concepts of being and ontic. In Christian theology, the concept of θεία ουσία is one of the most important doctrinal concepts, central to the development of trinitarian doctrine.
Cyril Lucaris (or Lucar), the Patriarch of Alexandria and later of Constantinople, used this Greek term to express the idea for which the Latin term is transsubstantiatio (transubstantiation), which likewise literally means a change of substantia (substance, inner reality), using, in the 1629 Latin text of his The Eastern Confession of the Orthodox Faith, the term transsubstantiatio, and, in the Greek translation published in 1633, the term μετουσίωσις.
Hieromartyr Cyril Lucaris or Loukaris, born Constantine Lucaris, was a Greek prelate and theologian, and a native of Candia, Crete. He later became the Greek Patriarch of Alexandria as Cyril III and Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople as Cyril I. He is alleged by Calvinists, both of his time and modern, to have strove for a reform of the Eastern Orthodox Church along Protestant and Calvinist lines. Attempts to bring Calvinism into the Orthodox Church were rejected, and Cyril's actions, motivations, and specific viewpoints remain a matter of debate among scholars. However, he is recognized by the Orthodox Church as a hieromartyr and defender of the Orthodox faith against both the Jesuit Catholics and Calvinist Protestants. The official glorification of Hieromartyr Cyril Loukaris took place by decision of the Holy Synod of the Patriarchate of Alexandria on October 6, 2009, and his memory is commemorated on June 27.
The Patriarch of Alexandria is the archbishop of Alexandria, Egypt. Historically, this office has included the designation "pope".
The Ecumenical Patriarch is the Archbishop of Constantinople–New Rome and ranks as primus inter pares among the heads of the several autocephalous churches that make up the Eastern Orthodox Church. He is widely regarded as the representative and spiritual leader of the 300 million Eastern Orthodox Christians worldwide. The term Ecumenical in the title is a historical reference to the Ecumene, a Greek designation for the civilised world, i.e. the Roman Empire, and it stems from Canon 28 of the Council of Chalcedon.
To counter the teaching of Lucaris, who denied transsubstantiatio/μετουσίωσις, Metropolitan Petro Mohyla of Kiev (also called Peter Mogila) drew up in Latin an Orthodox Confession, defending transubstantiation. Translated into Greek, using "μετουσίωσις" for the Latin term "transubstantiation", this Confession was approved by all the Greek-speaking Patriarchs (those of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem) in 1643, and again by the Synod of Jerusalem (1672) (also referred to as the Council of Bethlehem).
The Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem or Eastern Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem, officially Patriarch of Jerusalem, is the head bishop of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem, ranking fourth of nine Patriarchs in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Since 2005, the Eastern Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem has been Theophilos III. The Patriarch is styled "Patriarch of the Holy City of Jerusalem and all Holy Land, Syria, beyond the Jordan River, Cana of Galilee, and Holy Zion." The Patriarch is the head of the Brotherhood of the Holy Sepulchre, and the religious leader of about 130,000 Eastern Orthodox Christians in the Holy Land, most of them Palestinians.
The Synod of Jerusalem was convened by Orthodox Patriarch Dositheos Notaras in March 1672. Because the occasion was the consecration of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, it is also called the Synod of Bethlehem.
The declaration of the 1672 Orthodox Synod of Jerusalem is quoted by J.M. Neale (History of Eastern Church, Parker, Oxford and London, 1858) as follows: "When we use the word metousiosis, we by no means think it explains the mode by which the bread and wine are converted into the Body and Blood of Christ, for this is altogether incomprehensible ... but we mean that the bread and wine are changed into the Body and Blood of the Lord, not figuratively or symbolically, nor by any extraordinary grace attached to them ... but ... the bread becomes verily and indeed and essentially the very true Body of the Lord, and the wine the very Blood of the Lord."
The Catechism of the [Roman] Catholic Church similarly states that the change is real while averring that the means of change remain a mystery: "The signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ."
Since the Eastern Orthodox Church accepts as dogma only the solemn teaching of seven Ecumenical Councils, this approval, though part of what the Encyclopædia Britannica called "the most vital statement of faith made in the Greek Church during the past thousand years", μεταβολή, μετουσίωσις) is taught as strongly as words can make it."was not equivalent to a dogmatic definition. However, the Protestant scholar Philip Schaff wrote in his Creeds of Christendom: "This Synod is the most important in the modern history of the Eastern Church, and may be compared to the Council of Trent. Both fixed the doctrinal status of the Churches they represent, and both condemned the evangelical doctrines of Protestantism ... the Romish doctrine of transubstantiation (
The Eastern Orthodox Church, officially the Orthodox Catholic Church, is the second-largest Christian church, with approximately 260 million baptised members. It operates as a communion of autocephalous churches, each governed by its bishops in local synods. Roughly half of Eastern Orthodox Christians live in Russia. The church has no central doctrinal or governmental authority analogous to the Bishop of Rome, but the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople is recognised by all as primus inter pares of the bishops. As one of the oldest surviving religious institutions in the world, the Eastern Orthodox Church has played a prominent role in the history and culture of Eastern and Southeastern Europe, the Caucasus, and the Near East.
The term metousiosis is, of course, not found in the text of the Eastern Orthodox Church's Divine Liturgy, just as the term transubstantiation is not found in the text of the Latin Eucharistic liturgy. The Encyclopedia of Eastern Orthodox Christianity states: "The Greek term metousiosis, which is comparable to the Latin transsubstantiatio, does appear in Orthodox liturgical and theological texts – though not as often as other vocabulary (e.g., metastoicheiosis, a "change of elements").
A. Osipov states that the Orthodox use of the Greek word μεταβολή (metabole), meaning "change", and the Russian предложение in relation to the Eucharist should not be taken as equivalent to the word "transubstantiation", which has been rendered as metousiosis.Eastern theologians who use the word "transubstantiation" or "metousiosis" are careful to exclude the notion that it is an explanation of how the bread and wine of the sacrament are changed into the body and blood of Christ, instead of being a statement of what is changed. Both Orlov and Nikolaj Uspenksij appeal to Church Fathers who, when speaking of other doctrines, drew analogies from the Eucharist and spoke of it as bread and wine, but as having also a heavenly nature.
Some Eastern Orthodox theologians thus appear to deny transubstantiation/metousiosis, but in the view of Adrian Fortescue, what they object to is the associated theory of substance and accident, and they hold that there is a real change of the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ.
An English translation of the full, quite lengthy, declaration by the 1672 Orthodox Council of Jerusalem, convoked by Patriarch Dositheos II of Jerusalem, can be found at the website Chapter VI of Acts and Decrees of the Synod of Jerusalem.
The first edition of The Longer Catechism of the Orthodox, Catholic, Eastern Church, known also as The Catechism of St. Philaret, did not include the term metousiosis;but it was added in the third edition: "In the exposition of the faith by the Eastern Patriarchs, it is said that the word transubstantiation is not to be taken to define the manner in which the bread and wine are changed into the Body and Blood of the Lord; for this none can understand but God; but only thus much is signified, that the bread truly, really, and substantially becomes the very true Body of the Lord, and the wine the very Blood of the Lord." The official Greek version of this passage (question 340) uses the word "metousiosis".
Writing in 1929, Metropolitan of Thyatira Germanos said that an obstacle to the request for union with the Eastern Orthodox Church presented in the 17th century by some Church of England bishops was that "the Patriarchs were adamant on the question of Transubstantiation", which, in view of the Thirty-Nine Articles, the Anglican bishops did not wish to accept.
A collection of texts from as early as the 5th century in which councils, individual ecclesiastics, and other writers and theologians of the Eastern Orthodox Church used the Greek term in the same sense as the Latin term is found at Orthodoxy and Transubstantiation.
The Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria does not use a term corresponding to transubstantiation/metousiosis, but it speaks of "change" and rejects the Protestant denial of "the reality of the change of the bread and wine to the body and the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ".
Consubstantiation is a Christian theological doctrine that describes the real presence in the Eucharist. It holds that during the sacrament, the substance of the body and blood of Christ are present alongside the substance of the bread and wine, which remain present. It was part of the doctrines of Lollardy and considered a heresy by the Roman Catholic Church.
The Eucharist is a Christian rite that is considered a sacrament in most churches, and as an ordinance in others. According to the New Testament, the rite was instituted by Jesus Christ during the Last Supper; giving his disciples bread and wine during the Passover meal, Jesus commanded his followers to "do this in memory of me" while referring to the bread as "my body" and the cup of wine as "the new covenant in my blood". Through the Eucharistic celebration Christians remember both Christ's sacrifice of himself on the cross and his commission of the apostles at the Last Supper.
Transubstantiation is, according to the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church, the change of substance or essence by which the bread and wine offered in the sacrifice of the sacrament of the Eucharist during the Mass, become, in reality, the body and blood of Jesus Christ. In this teaching, the notions of substance and transubstantiation are not linked with any particular theory of metaphysics.
Mass is the main eucharistic liturgical service in many forms of Western Christianity. The term Mass is commonly used in the Roman Catholic and Anglican churches, as well as in some Lutheran, Methodist, Western Rite Orthodox, and Old Catholic churches.
The epiclesis is the part of the Anaphora by which the priest invokes the Holy Spirit upon the Eucharistic bread and wine in some Christian churches.
The real presence of Christ in the Eucharist is a term used in Christian theology to express the doctrine that Jesus is really or substantially present in the Eucharist, not merely symbolically or metaphorically.
In Christian theology, the term Body of Christ has two main but separate meanings: it may refer to Jesus' words over the bread at the Last Supper that "This is my body" in Luke 22:19–20, or to the usage of the term by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 12:12–14 and Ephesians 4:1–16 to refer to the Christian Church. It may also refer to Christ's post-resurrection body in Heaven. Christ also associated himself with the poor of the world and this is also called the Body of Christ.“If we truly wish to encounter Christ, we have to touch his body in the suffering bodies of the poor, as a response to the sacramental communion bestowed in the Eucharist. The Body of Christ, broken in the sacred liturgy, can be seen, through charity and sharing, in the faces and persons of the most vulnerable of our brothers and sisters.” said Pope Francis on launching the World Day of the Poor.
Consecration is the solemn dedication to a special purpose or service, usually religious. The word consecration literally means "association with the sacred". Persons, places, or things can be consecrated, and the term is used in various ways by different groups. The origin of the word comes from the Latin stem consecrat, which means dedicated, devoted, and sacred. A synonym for to consecrate is to sanctify; a distinct antonym is to desecrate.
Sacramental bread, sometimes called altar bread, Communion bread, the Lamb or simply the host, is the bread used in the Christian ritual of the Eucharist. Along with sacramental wine, it is one of two "elements" of the Eucharist. The bread may be either leavened or unleavened, depending on tradition.
The Words of Institution are words echoing those of Jesus himself at his Last Supper that, when consecrating bread and wine, Christian Eucharistic liturgies include in a narrative of that event. Eucharistic scholars sometimes refer to them simply as the verba.
In Christianity, a Eucharistic miracle is any miracle involving the Eucharist. In the Roman Catholic, Lutheran, Eastern Orthodox, Methodist, Anglican and Oriental Orthodox Churches, the fact that Christ is really made manifest in the Eucharist is deemed a Eucharistic miracle; however, this is to be distinguished from other manifestations of God. The Catholic Church distinguishes between divine revelation, such as the Eucharist, and private revelation, such as Eucharistic miracles. In general, reported Eucharistic miracles usually consist of unexplainable phenomena such as consecrated Hosts visibly transforming into myocardium tissue, being preserved for extremely long stretches of time, surviving being thrown into fire, bleeding, or even sustaining people for decades. Verification of Eucharistic miracles often depends on the religious branch reporting the supposed miracle, but in the case of the Catholic Church, a special task-force or commission investigates supposed Eucharistic miracles before deciding whether they are "worthy of belief." As with other private revelations, such as Marian apparitions, belief in approved miracles is not mandated by the Catholic Church, but often serves to reassure believers of God's presence or as the means to "send a message" to the population at large. Anglican Churches have also confirmed extraordinary Eucharistic miracles. It is also not uncommon for religious authorities to allow secular sources to investigate, and verify, at least specifics of the supposed miracle.
Eucharistic theology is a branch of Christian theology which treats doctrines concerning the Holy Eucharist, also commonly known as the Lord's Supper. It exists exclusively in Christianity and related religions, as others generally do not contain a Eucharistic ceremony.
Sacramental union is the Lutheran theological doctrine of the Real Presence of the body and blood of Christ in the Christian Eucharist.
Anglican eucharistic theology is diverse in practice, reflecting the comprehensiveness of Anglicanism. Its sources include prayer book rubrics, writings on sacramental theology by Anglican divines, and the regulations and orientations of ecclesiastical provinces. The principal source material is the Book of Common Prayer, specifically its eucharistic prayers and Article XXVIII of the Thirty-Nine Articles. Article XXVIII comprises the foundational Anglican doctrinal statement about the Eucharist, although its interpretation varies among churches of the Anglican Communion and in different traditions of churchmanship such as Anglo-Catholicism and Evangelical Anglicanism.
Blood of Christ in Christian theology refers to (a) the physical blood actually shed by Jesus Christ primarily on the Cross, and the salvation which Christianity teaches was accomplished thereby; and (b) the sacramental blood present in the Eucharist or Lord's Supper, which is considered by Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, and Lutheran Christians to be the same blood of Christ shed on the Cross.
The Eucharist in the Catholic Church is a sacrament celebrated as "the source and summit" of the Christian life. The Eucharist is celebrated daily during the celebration of Mass, the eucharistic liturgy. The term Eucharist is also used for the bread and wine when transubstantiated, according to Catholic teaching, into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. "At the Last Supper, on the night he was betrayed, our Saviour instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood."
A sacrament is a Christian rite recognized as of particular importance and significance. There are various views on the existence and meaning of such rites. Many Christians consider the sacraments to be a visible symbol of the reality of God, as well as a means by which God enacts his grace. Many denominations, including the Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Methodist, and Reformed, hold to the definition of sacrament formulated by Augustine of Hippo: an outward sign of an inward grace that has been instituted by Jesus Christ. Sacraments signify God's grace in a way that is outwardly observable to the participant.
Stercoranism is a supposed belief or doctrine attributed reciprocally to the other side by those who in the eleventh century upheld and those who denied that the bread and wine offered in the Eucharist become in substance, but not in form, the body and blood of Jesus Christ.