A “First Communion” Sunday!

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In the good old, bad old Days, Anglican Christians waited until their Confirmation before they received their 1st Holy Communion.  The logical (but not “theological”) reasoning was that until a person reached the  ‘age of accountability’ (variously said to be 12 or 13 yrs. old), that person could not receive the mysteries of Christ’s Body and Blood with enough maturity to fully comprehend the Sacrament.  Accordingly, the Confirmation Rite was, in part at least, a rite of passage from non-communion to full communion for those who were Confirmed.  This meant that Confirmation was also a tie-in by the Bishop to the Day of 1st Communion…not a bad connection between Bishops and newly confirmed communicants.
However, upon reflection, the Church (in the 1970’s) untied the knot between Confirmation and subsequent 1st Communion.  Though we continue to carefully prepare every young Christian for their 1st Communion, that preparation no longer has to wait until a child reaches an alleged “age of accountability”.  After all, who among us adults can honestly claim to have a fully, completely thought-out mature understanding of the Mysteries of the Blessed Sacrament?  If, in the natural family, a child may benefit from receiving three meals a day with or without an adequate understanding of nutrition, why is it that a child in the Super-natural Family of God (‘The Church’) cannot benefit from receiving the Bread from Heaven, and the Cup of Salvation before Confirmation?  So:  at GSAC, though we continue recommending that the minimum age of  Confirmation is 12 yrs. old, we will grant 1st Communion to any baptized Christian whose parents desire it and who are willing to attend at least three “1st Communion Classes.”