Corpus Christi Essays On The Church And The Eucharist

7), I suddenly realized that the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist was and is the constant belief of the Church from apostolic times to the present day: They have no regard for love, no care for the widow, or the orphan, or the oppressed; of the bond, or of the free; of the hungry, or of the thirsty.They abstain from the Eucharist and from prayer, because they confess not the Eucharist to be the flesh of our Saviour Jesus Christ, which suffered for our sins, and which the Father, of His goodness, raised up again.In fact, we may speak of having "welcoming parishes" and "doing works of mercy" so that we can "be Christ to others," but how many of us still have that deep longing for a love greater than ourselves?

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Surely that would be ridiculous, and lead to abuses of all kinds: persons confecting the Eucharist in sacrilegious ways, and treating the Eucharistic Lord without proper reverence.(6) Therefore, the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist inevitably requires that there be a class of persons marked out from among the ranks of believers who are set aside and entrusted with the authority to celebrate the Eucharist at the proper times.

This line of reasoning could surely be stated better and more succinctly by others, but I hope I have made it somewhat clear why a Real Presence doctrine of the Eucharist, in which the bread and wine are truly transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ, requires a new covenant priesthood.

If you've read about why I veil at Mass, you know that the centrality of my devotion is the Eucharist, the Real Presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament.

As we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ on Father's Day weekend, I can't help but think of how both of these celebrations have something to do with the deepest desires of our hearts.

Before we can truly give ourselves to others, we need to encounter God.

It's possible that we could be so focused on ourselves - what we do, how we think, or even what we believe God is calling us to do - that we aren't giving God a chance to fill us, to reveal Himself to us, to reveal His love for us, and to show us to what degree He truly does love us. Every day, we have a chance to let God sweep us off our feet all over again, when we behold the mind-blowing implications of Him having left us His very body, blood, soul and divinity to permeate our bodies, our entire beings, with His Divine Love. This is the fulfillment of what - or who - we long for. On the feast of Corpus Christi, we realize that He is a God who longs to be intimately close to each one of us.In this recitation of the Eucharistic “Institution Narrative” by St.Paul (which most closely resembles Luke of all the Gospels), we see the first three in this verbal sequence: “take,” “give thanks” (Gk eucharisteo), and “break.”Twelve baskets full are picked up afterwards, which (1) foreshadows the care for every particle of the Eucharist that later will be manifest by the Church, and (2) denotes by the number twelve the fullness of the tribes of Israel.So while I grant that it's possible that a small portion of Catholics may very well have a legalistic approach to the faith, I would argue that most of us do not. We hear homilies that tell us what we should do and how we should be, and while it's important to know this, they can also add to stereotype because the message people continue to hear is "here is the checklist." This is possible even if it now sounds more like a thoughtful interpretation of the gospel rather than a bunch of arbitrary precepts.So let's take a step back for a moment and go back to the most basic of the basics.Jewish tradition held that Melchizedek was none other than Shem, son of Noah, based on the fact that Shem lived into the lifespan of Abraham, and who else would be qualified to invoke a blessing upon Abraham.The text, however, connects the bread and wine to Melchizedek's priesthood and the conferral of the blessing, so it would be better to understand the bread and wine as liturgical offerings (i.e. This does not exclude a practical use for the refreshment of those present, because liturgical offerings in the ancient world were often consumed by the worshipers as part of the ritual.To sum up, Gen -20 reminds us that in Jesus we still have a priest who exercises the priesthood of Melchizedek, a priesthood that involves the offering of bread and wine which confers on the recipients blessing and salvation from their enemies.He is the one truly “begotten” by God, like the “dew,” which forms before the start of the “day,” (that is, before the dawn of creation).He is a priest “forever” in the fullest sense, for he never dies.Nonetheless, the Father has not yet made all his enemies “at footstool for his feet,” and he “rules in the midst of his foes,” that is, He leads us (the Church) to victory even though we are surrounded by enemies and persecutions in this life.


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