Lopez, Alemie C.

2-BFM

February 16, 2011

SACRAMENT OF THE EUCHARIST
A. HISTORICAL BACKGROUND In his First Epistle to the Corinthians, Paul the Apostle gives the earliest recorded description of Jesus' Last Supper. The synoptic gospels, first Mark, and then Matthew and Luke, portray Jesus as presiding over the Last Supper. References to Jesus' body and blood predict his crucifixion, and he identifies them as a new covenant. In the gospel of John, the account of the Last Supper has no mention of Jesus taking bread and wine and speaking of them as his body and blood; instead it recounts his humble act of washing the disciples' feet, the prophecy of the betrayal, which set in motion the events that would lead to the cross, and his long discourse in response to some questions posed by his followers, in which he went on to speak of the importance of the unity of the disciples with him and each other. The expression The Lord's Supper, derived from St. Paul's usage in 1 Corinthians 11:17-34, may have originally referred to the Agape feast, the shared communal meal with which the Eucharist was originally associated. The Agape feast is mentioned in Jude 12. But The Lord's Supper is now commonly used in reference to a celebration involving no food other than the sacramental bread and wine. Early Christian sources The Didache (Greek: teaching) is an early Church order, including, among other features, instructions for Baptism and the Eucharist. Most scholars date it to the early 2nd century, and distinguish in it two separate Eucharistic traditions, the earlier tradition in chapter 10 and the later one preceding it in chapter 9. The Eucharist is mentioned again in chapter 14. Ignatius of Antioch (ca. 35 or 50-between 98 and 117), one of the Apostolic Fathers, mentions the Eucharist as "the flesh of our Savior Jesus Christ , and Justin Martyr speaks of it as more than a meal: "the food over which the prayer of thanksgiving, the word received from Christ, has been said ... is the flesh and blood of this Jesus who became flesh ... and the deacons carry some to those who are absent." B. BIBLICAL FOUNDATION The Last Supper appears in all three Synoptic Gospels: Matthew, Mark, and Luke; and in the First Epistle to the Corinthians, while the last-named of these also indicates something of how early Christians celebrated what Paul the Apostle called the Lord's Supper. As well as the Eucharistic dialogue seen in John chapter 6. C. TEACHINGS OF THE CHURCH ADORATION OF THE EUCHARIST The consecrated Host and the Precious Blood under the form of wine are given the adoration that is reserved for God alone, since they are, indeed, Almighty God Himself. This highest form of worship is known as latria. The opinions that Christ is only in the Eucharistic elements as in a sign, or that Christ is received only spiritually, were condemned by the Council of Trent.

The repentant person must receive Communion after having confessed. Also. these are spiritual presences. THE MEANING OF THE EUCHARIST The Sacrament of Communion is a Holy Sacrament by which the believer eats the Holy Body and Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. whoever is ordained with any priestly rank must receive Communion following the Holy Mass of his ordination E. it is no longer Jesus. for all the Sacraments are crowned by the Eucharist: The person baptized must receive Communion directly after Baptism. abideth in me. nor finally in a pantheistical deification of the communicant. (which must take place between the Matins and Holy Mass). but presupposes such a state. Together with .Body. He remains one. Yet Christ is not divided. PURPOSE AND EFFECT THE UNION WITH CHRIST BY LOVE The first and principal effect of the Holy Eucharist is union with Christ by love which union as such does not consist in the sacramental reception of the Host. and that He is present by sanctifying grace in all souls in the state of grace. Christ Himself designated the idea of Communion as a union love: "He that eateth my flesh. When a consecrated Host is digested or dissolved in water.is entirely unique. one of the sacraments of the living. and I in him" (John 6:57). Thus Our Lord is present in a communicant for about 15 minutes. and drinketh blood. It is. Soul and Divinity. the tiniest particle of a consecrated Host or the smallest drop of consecrated "wine" is Christ. as the Creator and Sustainer of all things. THE SPIRITUAL REPAST OF THE SOUL A second fruit of this union with Christ by love is an increase of sanctifying grace in the soul of the worthy communicant. Here let it be remarked at the outset. Blood. according to the original Rite of Matrimony. presented by the Bread and Wine. as it is for a corpse to assimilate food and drink. nor in a hypostatic union of the soul with the Person of the Word. The Eucharistic presence of Christ . D. It stands to reason that the essence of this union by love consists neither in a natural union with Jesus similar to that between soul and body. Our Lord is present as long as the appearances of bread and wine remain. but simply in a moral but wonderful union with Christ by the bond of the most ardent charity. It is sometimes called the Mystery of Mysteries or the Crown of Sacraments . The person who marries must receive Communion after the wedding. Furthermore. While it is true that God is everywhere. therefore. and one should adore Him within oneself as long as He is sacramentally present. It is as impossible for the soul in the state of mortal sin to receive this Heavenly Bread with profit. Soul and Divinity . and no longer has the appearance of bread. Blood. and it alone is referred to as the Divine Presence. so that the recipient receives Christ whole and entire under either form. that the Holy Eucharist does not per se constitute a person in the state of grace as do the sacraments of the dead (baptism and penance).THE REAL PRESENCE Both the bread and wine become the whole Jesus Christ . This Sacrament has the greatest importance among the Seven Church Sacraments. but in the spiritual and mystical union with Jesus by the theological virtue of love.His Body.

The Separation of the Eucharistic Christ into two separate signs (bread and wine). therefore.org . namely. and hence (indirectly) with the living Flesh of Christ. THE PLEDGE OF OUR RESURRECTION There can be nothing incongruous or improper in the fact that the body also shares in this effect of Communion.the increase of sanctifying grace there is associated another effect. since it was for mankind only that Christ instituted this Eucharistic food of souls and commanded its reception. a sacrifice of ransom and salvation. signals to us the separation of His flesh and blood on the Cross. A good Communion is recognized less in the transitory sweetness of the emotions than in its lasting practical effects on the conduct of our daily lives. This condition excludes not only irrational animals. particularly of impurity. *The recipient of the Eucharist The first requisite of aptitude or capacity is that the recipient be a "human being". it is effected by the allaying of concupiscence. the Holy Eucharist cleanses with its purifying flame the smallest stains which adhere to the soul. be dismissed without any injury to dogma. even as the Blessed Mother of God. As a union based upon love. acquired a moral claim to her own bodily assumption into heaven. for neither possesses human souls. so does this food of our souls remove our lesser spiritual ailments and preserve us from spiritual death. telling us that the bread that I shall give you is my flesh for the life of the world . According to the teaching of the Roman Catechism. F. The further discussion as to whether some "physical quality" or a "sort of germ of immortality" is implanted in the body of the communicant. has no sufficient foundation in the teaching of the Fathers and may. which alone can be nourished by this food unto eternal life. It only remains for us to ascertain with clearness the manner in which this preservative influence against relapse into mortal sin is exerted. but angels also. The destruction of venial sin and of all affection to it is readily understood on the basis of the two central ideas mentioned above. and at the same time serves as an effective prophylactic against grievous sin. and the confection (confectio) and the reception (susceptio) thereof being separated from each other by an interval of time. SOURCE: http://www. which is the chief source of deadly sin. The minister of the Eucharist The Eucharist being a permanent sacrament. inasmuch as she was the former abode of the Word made flesh. it acquires a moral right to its future resurrection. since by its physical contact with the Eucharist species.catholic. but a medicine as well. The Lord made it easier to consume Him in this form. SYMBOLS. FORGIVENESS OF VENIAL SIN AND PRESERVATION FROM MORTAL SIN The Holy Eucharist is not merely a food. Just as material food banishes minor bodily weaknesses and preserves man's physical strength from being impaired. the minister may be and in fact is twofold: (a) the minister of consecration and (b) the minister of administration. a certain spiritual relish or delight of soul. MINISTERS. RECIPIENT *Symbol Bread and wine are food and drink and the Eucharist is our supernatural-spiritual nourishment.

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