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Metaphysical meaning of transubstantiation (rw)

Metaphysical meaning of transubstantiation (rw)
transubstantiation--The doctrine that the consecration by the minister of bread and wine changes the material elements to Christ elements, without affecting their appearance. At the Last Supper Jesus taught that the bread and wine which He consecrated were His body and His blood, and He told His followers to partake of them in remembrance of Him. He did not say that these elements were symbols of His blood and body, but that they were essentially the same substance and life as His body. This also has been the teaching of the church, as interpreted by the Council of Trent: "Under each species and under each particle of each species Christ is contained whole and entire."

This doctrine has been attacked both within and without the church, the majority of ministers and laymen accepting it on faith as in some way related to the miraculous. But the discoveries of the elemental character of matter by modern science are revealing the universal unity of substance and the possibility of its transformation from one thing to another by changing the number of arrangement of the electrons in the atom.

Preceding Entry: transmutation
Following Entry: treatment