Remember how sternly the instruction, Redemptionis Sacramentum (article 117) forbade the use of glass Communion vessels? It was REPROBATED! Horrors. How could anyone foster disrespect for the Eucharist by using such fragile materials as GLASS??
Archaeologists in Spain (working in excavations in the province of Jaen, in Andalusia) have discovered a glass paten dating probably from the 4th century. It is made of green glass and is beautifully engraved with images of Christ in majesty with two disciples, whom the researchers identified as Peter and Paul. All are beardless. This paten is wonderfully preserved and has been designated one of National Geographic’s “discoveries of the year.”
This isn’t the only ancient glass liturgical vessel around, either. Pope Zephyrinus (198-217) decreed the use of glass vessels, the Liber Pontificalis tells us. And the practice of using glass communion vessels hung on through the fourth century according to the Cambridge Medieval History (there’s a glass paten in the British Museum).
Well, what do you know. I guess some of our forbears in faith were not so horrified by glass as we are supposed to be today.