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Should we withhold the giving of wine in Holy Communion?

Thomas Renz writes: Decisions that had to be made in response to the current pandemic previously prompted me to write briefly on the history of withholding the cup, on arguments against it, on the Communion of the sick, on the doctrines of transubstantiation and concomitance, and on God’s real presence, pondering the implications for celebrating and receiving Holy Communion. 

I noted:

The restoration of the cup to the laity was a key concern of the Reformers. While they disagreed on the way in which Christ should be understood to be present in the Eucharist, they were “united in demanding that there should be no celebration of the Eucharist which did not include the communion of the people and not just of the priest alone, and that this reception should be of both bread and cup and not just of bread alone” (R. C. D. Jasper and Paul F. Bradshaw, A Companion to the Alternative Service Book [London: SPCK, 1986], 162).

There seems to be no evidence of bishops or clergy within the Church of England denying the Cup to the laity in subsequent centuries, including during the great plague years, until the Swine Flue epidemic in 2009. This had perhaps been facilitated by the notes in the liturgy for ministry to the sick in Common Worship which lacked the Book of Common Prayer’s emphasis on the desirability of a congregation of communicants surrounding the sick…
Appeal has, in the last year, been made to the Roman Catholic doctrine of ‘concomitance’, meaning that we receive Christ by faith equally in each of the elements of bread and wine, so that receiving only the bread is sufficient to still receive Christ in the sacrament. But, as I point out, this doctrine relies on an understanding of what is happening in Communion which is foreign to Anglican understanding. 

New Church of England guidance allows its clergy to offer the common cup again from 19 July. Here I summarise the key theological points to consider as  clergy decide whether to take up this offer and again offer the common cup.

What is offered to communicants with the cup? The blood of Christ, in a sense.

The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a sharing in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a sharing in the body of Christ? (1 Corinthians 11:16).