The Reformers called for Eucharistic celebrations at which the faithful regularly communicated and also did so by receiving from the chalice. The title and subtitle of Torrance’s book (see n. 22 above) bring to mind easily what has happened ‘on both sides’, so to speak.
On the ‘Catholic’ side the faithful have come to participate much more in the celebration of the Eucharist and to communicate regularly whenever they do so. By mandating the celebration of the Eucharist in the vernacular and a wide availability of ‘Communion under two kinds’, the bishops of the Catholic Church have, in fact, said ‘yes’ to two changes that Luther earnestly desired. The call of the Reformers and members of Roman Catholic religious institutes to hear and preach the Word of God was also heard in Vatican II’s document on the Eucharist. The faithful assembled for the Eucharist should not only be ‘nourished at the table of the Lord’s Body’ but also ‘instructed by the Word of God’ (SC 48).24
24 On the ‘double table’ of word and sacrament, see Thesis 4 above.
On the ‘Protestant’ side, twentieth-century biblical scholars led the way in recognizing the sacriﬁcial implications of a key phrase from the institution narrative: ‘do this in memory of me’. For the ancient Israelites, ‘memorial (zikkaron)’ was a sacriﬁcial word: a victim burned on the altar was called a ‘memorial’ or ‘reminder’.25
25 On the signiﬁcance of ‘memory/memorial’ for clarifying the sacriﬁcial dimen sion of the Last Supper, see R. Moloney, The Eucharist (London: Geoffrey Chapman, 1995), 42 9.
A new appreciation of the sacriﬁcial signiﬁcance of ‘memorial (anamnesis)’ and of its counterpart in the words of Jesus (Luke 22: 19; 1 Cor. 11: 24–5) found its place in such landmark ecumenical documents as BEM and the Final Report.26