Eucharist, a sacrament of Initiation, is a very important sacrament of the Catholic Church as it is the consummation between God and His people. This sacrament celebrates the essence of Christ and His sacrifice for us. The word Eucharist means to “give thanks”; it means that we should celebrate this sacrifice and praise Him for it. We should celebrate the Eucharist with extreme reverence and joy. The Catholic Church teaches very specific details about this specific sacrament regarding transubstantiation, open Communion, and how the sacrament came to be including how it is understood.
Transubstantiation, also known as the belief in Real Presence, is an important aspect of the dogma of the Eucharist. Transubstantiation is the belief that the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ, along with his soul and divinity, both present in a true manner. It is when the transformation actually occurs, but this belief leads to the belief that both exist in these objects. After the words of Consecration are said, there is no bread and wine present, only the Body and Blood of Christ. The Church teaches that the whole of Christ is present in every part of the Eucharist and it will endure forever despite the actual limitations of bread or wine.
The Old Testament prefigures the sacrament of Eucharist in many ways. In the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt, God supplies His people with manna to eat and survive on. This is temporary bread and food, but God will soon provide the bread of eternal life. The Eucharist was very clearly foreshadowed in the Bread from Heaven discourse. Jesus supplies thousands of people with bread and fish to eat while he continues to preach. In the Eucharist, Jesus supplies the eternal living bread of life that will lead us to heaven. “I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst.” (Jn 6:35) The use of bread and wine symbolizes many great things in the Old Testament. One...
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