Pastor's Corner Jun 18 2017

The Blessed Eucharist is a memorial of the passion of the Lord, but also of his Resurrection. The first encounter with the risen Lord was on Sunday, which is both, as it were, the 8th day of the week--beyond what was possible before, and the 1st day of the week--a new beginning. It is clear from the Acts of the Apostles that the gathering of the community for the "breaking of the bread" happened on this same day which acquired the name the Lord's Day. The Eucharist and a memorial of the Resurrection were always together.

Do we re-enact the Last Supper when we celebrate Mass? No. We re-enact, according to his instruction to "do this in memory of me" only that part of the Last Supper which was properly instituted by Jesus, what was new. Our Lord prayed in thanksgiving. Was he giving thanks that he had bread to eat? No. While that is proper to a meal, this was not a meal. The institution of the Eucharist was very clearly after the meal. According to Pope Benedict XVI: "For what did Jesus give thanks? That his prayer was heard, (cf. Heb. 5:7). He gave thanks in advance that the Father did not abandon him in death (cf. Ps 16:10). He gave thanks for the gift of the Res-urrection, and on that basis he could already give his body and blood in the form of bread and wine as a pledge of resurrection and eternal life (cf. Jn 6:53-58)." (Jesus of Nazareth, p.140).

That the Eucharist is given to us as food is a pledge of our participation in his resurrection. It is our resurrection from sin, and its consequences, death. Let us rejoice therefore. Let us joyfully live it. Let us joyfully proclaim it to a fallen world. Let us process in triumph with our resurrected Lord!

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