The Eucharist. The summit of our faith. Why is it that so many of us don’t value this amazing gift of Jesus? Is it because we live in a world and culture that teaches us that our individual beliefs are superior to those communal beliefs that have served us throughout the ages? Many people don’t believe in the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. Are we really that shallow and self centered?
In today’s first reading from first Corinthians, Paul shares with us what Jesus himself taught us about the Eucharist.
For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you,
that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over,
took bread and, after he had given thanks,
broke it and said, “This is my Body that is for you.
Do this in remembrance of me.”
In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying,
“This cup is the new covenant in my Blood.
Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.”
For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup,
you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.
Remembrance in the time of Jesus was a term associated frequently with the Passover. It meant that every celebration of the Passover was a “re-membering” (literally, “again in the flesh”) of the event. In short, it meant that every celebration of the Passover made the Passover occur in the present as well as in the past. When Jesus told his disciples at the first Eucharist to “do this in remembrance of me,” he meant that he would actually be present in real time during our celebration of the Eucharist. Thus, the first Eucharist happens again every time we celebrate Mass.
Be present to us Lord Jesus in your gift of the Holy Eucharist!