Another clear testimony of about the same date occurs in a sermon attributed to St. Dom Cabrol and others incline to the view that the kiss formed the natural sequel to the commemoration of the living and of the dead, and that all these three elements, which originally found a place at the Offertory, were deliberately transferred elsewhere in the course of some early revision of the Roman Liturgy, the commemoration of the living and of the dead being inserted separately in the great consecratory prayer, or Canon of the Mass, while the Pax was made to follow the Pater Noster, having been attracted to that position by the words "Forgive us our trespasses", etc. John Chrysostom, the Prayer Book of Serapion, and Anastasius Sinaita seem all to know of some such rite before Communion, and the practice of kissing the bishop's hand before receiving the Blessed Sacrament (see Card. Melania giuniore", note 41) may possibly be connected with it.
According to this second theory of the double kiss of peace, both the Roman and the Oriental liturgies omitted one of these salutations, the Oriental retaining that at the Offertory, the Roman that at the Communion.
Justin Martyr (Apol., I, 65), who writes: "When we have completed the prayers we salute one another with a kiss [ allelous philemati aspazometha pausamenoi ton euchon ], whereupon there is brought to the president bread and a cup of wine." This passage clearly shows that in the middle of the second century the usage already obtained — a usage now claimed as distinctive of the liturgies other than Roman — of exchanging the kiss of peace at the beginning of what we call the Offertory. Myst., v, 3) speaking of the time between the washing of the celebrant's hands and the Sursum Corda which introduces the Anaphora, or Preface, says, "Then the deacon cries out aloud: 'Embrace ye one another and let us salute each other. In Rome, however, the kiss of peace was more closely united to the Communion, and it must have followed shortly after the Pater Noster as it does at present. XXXVIII, 1101): "After this [the Lord's prayer ], Pax vobiscum is said, and the faithful salute each other with the kiss which is the sign of peace." The Roman Ordines, the Stowe Missal which represents Irish usage at an early date, and a chorus of liturgical writers from the eighth century onwards attest that wherever Roman influence prevailed the Pax invariably followed the great consecratory prayer and the Pater.
The language of many Oriental Fathers and of certain conciliary canons further confirms this conclusion as to the primitive position of the Pax. Thus Pope Innocent I in his letter to Decentius ( A. 416) blames the practice of those who give the Pax before the Consecration and urges that it was meant as a token that "the people give their assent to all things already performed in the mysteries". lt is easy to understand that the usage which placed the kiss of peace before the Offertory Was prompted by the remembrance of those words of our Lord (Mat., v, 23-24): "If therefore thou offer thy gift at the altar, and there thou remember that thy brother hath anything against thee; leave there thy offering before the altar, and go first to be reconciled to thy brother: and then coming thou shalt offer thy gift." It seems to be pretty generally held that this position before the Offertory was the primitive position of the liturgical kiss of peace even at Rome. However, the rival theory, that there were originally two occasions when the kiss of peace was given, one before the Offertory and the other before the Communion, does not lack probability; for St.
The Western Church, however, has not been the only one to discover that the ceremony of the Pax could not be decorously maintained when manners had grown less austere.