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Mysterium Fidei: 'The Salmanticenses' Response To De Lugo On The Form Of Consecration Of The Wine

Isidoro Matamoros
Is the Mysterium Fidei necessary for the consecration of the Blood of Christ in Mass? Introduction Off and on during the seven centuries that have elapsed since the death of St. Thomas, a quite …More
Is the Mysterium Fidei necessary for the consecration of the Blood of Christ in Mass?

Introduction

Off and on during the seven centuries that have elapsed since the death of St. Thomas, a quite legitimate theological controversy has been waged, with many and various theologians and scholars(both the famous and the not-so-famous) from time to time espousing one side or the other. Themooted question has been and is: for a valid consecration of the wine during mass do the merewords, "THIS IS MY BLOOD", suffice as the sacramental form? Or are the additional words of theform, which are used by the Western Church (equivalent words being used, by the way, in the Eastern rites), namely, "OF THE NEW AND ETERNAL TESTAMENT...(ETC.)...FOR YOU ANDFOR MANY UNTO THE REMISSION OF SINS," also required for validity? (Those who are ableto read Latin may wish to consult De Eucharistia, by Immanuel Doronzo, for an interesting accountof this controversy. Doronzo airs both sides, giving the principal arguments and counter-argumentsof each, and he lists the main theologians of note who, over the centuries, have allied themselveswith one side or the other. His own personal conclusion expressed at the end of his article is that itcomes out a "dead-heat"; that is, that both opinions are "equally probable".)

Until somewhat recently this controversy held interest from an academic point of view only. Butwith the first appearance in 1967 of the vernacular liturgies, many of which have the well-known"for all men" mutilation in the wine-consecration in place of the words "pro multis" ("for many"),this particular controversy became revived, and it is no longer of "academic" interest only. For the"for all men" mutilation occurs in the latter words of the aforesaid sacramental form, that is, in thepart which is disputed regarding its necessity for validity.