The End of the Age of Reason

The End of the Age of Reason March 24, 2012

Resolved:  that the Church should drop the distinctions in the administration of the sacraments of confirmation and eucharist based on “the age of reason” and return to the practice of the early Church, still preserved by the Churches of the East, and administer both sacraments to infants and small children.

Reading the Catechism on the sacraments, I was very much struck by the forced nature of the arguments adduced to support Western practice.   An argument based on the “age of reason” (which seems to miraculously occur at age 7 or 8)  pushes the efficacy of the sacraments from God’s grace on to the recipient:  in some sense turning them into spiritual “works”.   On a personal level, I am very troubled by the fact that this argument is still used even today to deny the sacraments to mentally retarded children and adults.

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