History of infant communion, part 1: Early church (30-500 AD)

Christians initiated infants by at least the late 2nd century (180s), and until the late Middle Ages (after 1000, but probably more like 1200), all newly baptized Christians were communed, regardless of age. Infant communion was lost because lay communion was lost, but when lay communion was restored in the 19th and 20th centuries, infant communion was not restored with it. In this first post, I’ll be focusing on the evidence for infant communion and the early church context.

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Baptismal anniversaries and sacramental reflection, an interlude

Celebrating baptismal anniversaries puts each child’s baptism on the calendar, and that’s central, I think. It provides a structure for periodically returning to the font. Sacramental reflection lets children, in a way befitting their development and personality, find their baptism meaningful as a foundation for who they are – and it could do the same for infant confirmation and communion.

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