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A History Of The Mass And Its Ceremonies In The Eastern And Western Church -Rev John O'Brien A.M.

It is very generally known that the entire Eastern Church, with the sole exception of the Armenians and Maronites, uses leavened bread in the preparation of the Holy Eucharist. Whether it has kept up this practice from the beginning or not we leave others to settle. Some are of opinion that it has, and others, for very weighty reasons, say that; it has not; but the point is one of small consequence so long as all agree in admitting that consecration takes place, no matter which of the two kinds is used.

According to Pococke (Travels in Egypt), the Copts also use unleavened bread; but this is certainly a mistake, for no author that we have seen makes such an assertion. If this were the case, Renaudot, who describes the Coptic ceremonies and customs most minutely, would certainly have made mention of it, or it would be referred to by Denzinger in his Ritus Orientalium.

Brerewood, in that hodge-podge entitled Enquiries touching the Diversity of Languages and Religions, London, 1674, asserts that the Abyssinians do the same—i.e., consecrate in unleavened bread. But as this author paid little or no attention to what he said, and took his information, in most cases, second hand, little reliance is to be placed on any statement that he makes which does not square with what has been said by approved authorities. He says also that Thecla Haimonout, an Abyssinian priest, stated that they celebrate ordinarily in leavened bread, but that they use unleavened on Holy Thursday (p. 203). This may have been done at one time, but it is not now.








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