The practice of communing infants is common place in the Eastern (Greek) Churches of Christianity. However, it is relatively unheard of in the Western (Latin) Churches. The influence of these two traditions is geographically divided in Europe. The western European nations were influenced by western Christianity centered in Rome. The eastern European nations were influenced by eastern Christianity centered in Constantinople.

Prior to World War II, the greatest proportion of European emigrants to America came from the nations of western Europe. The doctrines and practices of the American Christian Churches paralleled the doctrines and practices of western Europe. After World War II, the European emigration patterns changed. Masses of people in eastern Europe, fleeing from communist tyranny, found their way to America.

The religious customs of these immigrants did not fit well into any of the main American Christian Churches -- Roman, Lutheran, or Protestant. They began establishing their own congregations following the traditions and languages of their homeland churches. To the average American of western Christian tradition, the practices of these eastern Christians was odd -- their buildings were not of classic American Christian architecture, their services were longer and more ritualized, the people stood for the entire service.

One practice which appears most un-orthodox to American Christianity is the eastern Church's practice of infant communion. Many people have begun to ask questions about the Eastern (Orthodox) Church's practice of infant communion:

  • Why does the Orthodox Church commune infants?
  • Is communing infants contrary to the Holy Scripture?
  • How long has this been the practice of the Orthodox Church?
  • Why doesn't the western Church commune infants?

In pursuit of finding answers to these and other related questions, this web page has been established. Readers are invited to submit papers, questions, comments, and rebuttals.

Updated: September 30, 2005

Website Publisher: Rev. Gary V. Gehlbach