The pope claims that because non-Catholic churches don’t have the priesthood, they can’t perform the Eucharist (also called Communion or the Lord’s Supper) properly. Last week we talked about the Catholic claim of a unique priesthood and how that is not the case. Today we will look at the claim of the uniqueness of the Eucharist.
When the Lord Jesus Christ had his last meal with his disciples, he broke the bread and passed the cup around and said, “Do this is remembrance of me” (1 Corinthians 9:25). The Lord commanded the disciples to continue to break bread together in remembrance of the sacrifice he was about to make. And as the followers of Jesus increased after the day of Pentecost, they in turn obeyed this command and met daily to fellowship and break bread together (Acts 2:46).
The Lord never said that only certain people were permitted to break bread. He also didn’t ordain special words to be recited in the process. He only said, “Do this.” There is also no indication that in the early church they had a special process or ceremony for breaking bread. Those closest to Jesus would’ve been given proper and sufficient instructions on how to perform the ordinance of the Lord’s Supper if in fact there were special instructions. However the Catholic mass as it is didn’t come about for some time afterwards.
Therefore, not only is their no grounds to say that only certain people may be priests (as all believers are considered priests), there is no grounds to say that only certain people are able to perform an Eucharistic mass to properly distribute the Lord’s Supper.