Communing the Young

In a resent survey I distributed (see the post below), there were some who said that they do not wish to bring younger children to the Sacrament. I assume, given the survey and those to whom it was sent (mainly LCMS pastors), that “younger children” are children who are not yet of confirmation age (13 to 14 years old). My question is, why? Why not desire to bring younger children to the Sacrament?

Didn’t our Lord say to His disciples, “Let the little children come unto me”? I know, this is associated with Baptism, but our Lord doesn’t make this distinction, we do. Why do His words apply to Baptism and not to the Holy Supper? Shouldn’t His words, “Baptize all nations” refer to children (as indeed they do), and His words, “Come unto me …” refer to those who believe, which includes baptized children? It seems to me we’ve spilled too much ink on why children can’t come to Jesus in the Sacrament rather than spilling ink on why they should, as Luther pens in the Large Catechism. He writes, “Since children are baptized and received into the Chrisitan Church, they too should enjoy this communion of the Sacrament” (LC, V, 87). Oh, no! Sounds like Infant Communion! What are you afraid of? I’m not advocating communing infants, I’m saying that children can confess the faith and therefore should be allowed to receive what they are confessing. Or are we God, able to know what is in their hearts? Are we not commanded to love them, to beleive all things? If they lie, what is that to us, we are not the judge. Our theology is too general, too blanketing (nice adjective, eh?).

We try too hard to make general rules and assumptions, forgetting that we are dealing with specific people in specific times in specific ways. I wonder, are our Lord’s words, “For you” generic? If so, then you have no reason to think He means you.

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2 Responses

  1. My dear friend Mark –

    Whatever happened to that commitment (below) to write at least once a week? If you want to be read (?) you must write. I for one usually stop looking at blogs when they aren’t updated fairly frequently.

    So get back at it!

  2. Three kids with one potty training happened. Oh to be free of modern technology! Computers suck the life out of me.

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