The age at which mems. of chs. with canon* law are admitted to various obligations and privileges. In RCm one is presumed to reach the age of reason at 7, but allowance is made for variation. Reception of Communion is allowed before 7 at the discretion of the child's pastor, confessor, and parents. The age for confirmation is in flux, sometimes preceding, sometimes following first Communion. One who has the use of reason is bound by canon law in matters regarding reception of the Sacraments in danger of death, the precept of Easter Communion, and the precept of annual confession. The law of fasting becomes binding at 21. Minimum ages are specified for eligibility to certain ecclesiastical offices (e.g., bps. must be 30). The Angl. Ch. and the Oriental rites of the Cath. ch. have similar ecclesiastical rules or laws.
Edited by: Erwin L. Lueker, Luther Poellot, Paul Jackson
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The Lutheran Church--Missouri Synod
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