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Eucharist

“The Eucharist is the memorial of Christ’s Passover, that is, of the work of salvation accomplished by the life, death, and resurrection of Christ, a work made present by the liturgical action. It is Christ himself, the eternal high priest of the New Covenant who, acting through the ministry of the priests, offers the Eucharistic sacrifice. And it is the same Christ, really present under the species of bread and wine, who is the offering of the Eucharistic sacrifice.”
— (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1409-10)

This is the central act of worship for the church. For me, it is the sign of a true church. For years I served as a pastor for a church denomination that took this act as simple a memorial for Jesus work on the cross. We would have “communion” once every three months. My studies on the sacraments is one of the things that led me to leave this denomination.

I then joined a communion that, it its stated theology, said we should take communion as often as we can. The theology of this church was sacramental. However, as I was assigned a church to serve in this denomination, I discovered the people were just like the one’s I had left. They only wanted communion once a month and they would gladly use oyster crackers and a grape juice cocktail for communion. I did not last long in that church.

Now, I attend a church (I will not be allowed to serve as they do not recognize my ordination) that offers the Eucharistic sacrifice at least twice a week. It is here that I find spiritual strength and divine nurture. I just wish it had not taken me 40 years to get here.

I am grateful for the grace and spiritual substance the Eucharist offers. It is never a “common” event. Each time is different and meaningful. I find more hope in this act of worship than I would receive in a thousand sermons or songs. For in the Eucharist I meet with my Lord and my Lord offers to me Himself. What a joy, what an honor, what a powerful means of grace.

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