The Year of the Eucharist
October 2004 to October 2005

For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup,
 you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes. -- 1 Cor 11:26

The Year of the Eucharist
October 2004 to October 2005

Pope John Paul II with Eurcharist body of ChristWhat is the Year of the Eucharist?

From time to time the Vatican designates a particular year for the Church to devote herself especially to celebrating some important aspect of the Catholic faith.

Following in this tradition, Pope John Paul II announced a Year of the Eucharist on the feast of Corpus Christi (the Body of Christ) in June 2004.

The year begins with the World Eucharistic Congress, October 10–17, 2004, in Guadalajara, Mexico. It ends with the ordinary assembly of the Synod of Bishops held in the Vatican October 2–29, 2005.

The theme of the synod is “The Eucharist: Source and Summit of the Life and Mission of the Church.
Pope John Paul II
In this extended celebration, all Catholics are called to honor God’s gift of the Eucharist, to receive it more faithfully, and to reflect more deeply on its meaning in their lives and in the life of the Church.

John, chapter 6: The Bread of Life:

53- "Let me solemnly assure you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you.
54- Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.
55-For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink..." (John 6:53-55)

Meditation of St. Francis Assisi

Let Everyone be struck with fear,
the whole world tremble,
and the heavens exult
when Christ, the Son of the living God,
is present on the altar in the hands of the priest!
O wonderful loftiness
and stupendous dignity!
O sublime humility!
O humble sublimity!
The Lord of the universe,
God and the Son of God,
so humbles Himself
that He hides Himself
for our salvation
under an ordinary piece of bread!

See the humility of God, brothers,
and pour out your hearts before Him!
Humble yourselves
that you may be exalted by Him!
Hold back nothing of yourselves for yourselves,
that He Who gives Himself totally to you
may receive you totally!

I am the Bread of Life

Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes has eternal life.
48: I am the bread of life.
49: Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.
50: This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die.
51: I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever;
and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh."
52: The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"  ( John 6: 47-52)

Short Visit to
The Blessed Sacrament

By Ven. John Henry Newman

I place myself in the presence of Him, in whose Incarnate Presence I am before I place myself there.

I adore You, O my Savior, present here as God and man, in soul and body, in true flesh and blood.

I acknowledge and confess that I kneel before the Sacred Humanity, which was conceived in Mary’s womb, and lay in Mary’s bosom; which grew up to man’s estate, and by the Sea of Galilee called the Twelve, wrought miracles, and spoke words of wisdom and peace; which in due season hung on the cross, lay in the tomb, rose from the dead, and now reigns in heaven.

I praise and bless, and give myself wholly to Him, Who is the true Bread of my soul, and my everlasting joy.

The angels sang, the shepherds sang

The grateful earth rejoiced
And at His blessed birth, the stars
Their exultation voiced

O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
O come let us adore Him
Christ, the Lord

As we live in His world, we should   adore Him daily

As we labor in His field, we should  adore Him daily

As we look for His return, we should  adore Him daily

ThSecond edition of the Catechism of the Catholic Churche Roman Catholic Church has consistently held fast to the belief in the Real Presence.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states:

The mode of Christ's presence under the Eucharistic species is unique. It raises the Eucharist above all the sacraments as "the perfection of the spiritual life and the end to which all sacraments tend." In the most blessed sacrament of the Eucharist "the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ and, therefore, the whole Christ is truly, really, and substantially contained."

"This presence is called 'real' - by which is not intended to exclude the other types of presence as if they could not be 'real' too, but because it is presence in the fullest sense: that is to say, it is a substantial presence by which Christ, God and man, makes himself wholly and entirely present."

- The Catechism of the Catholic Church: paragraph 1374

Before the Blessed Sacrament

Prayer from the Angel of Peace in to
the Fátima Children

O most Holy Trinity,
Father, Son, & Holy Spirit,.

I adore you profoundly.
I offer you the most precious body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ,
present in all the tabernacles of the world,
in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges and indifferences by which He is offended.
By the infinite merits of the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
I beg the conversion of sinners.

"The Message of Fatima really begins with an Angel teaching the children how to receive and adore the Blessed Trinity and the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist."
Fr. Robert  J. Fox -
Fatima Family Apostolate

Act When Visiting the Most Holy Sacrament

By St. Alphonsus Liguori

My Lord Jesus Christ, who, for the love you bear to mankind, do remain night and day in this Sacrament, full of pity and love, awaiting, calling, and receiving all who come to visit you;

I believe that you are present in the Sacrament of the Altar; I adore you from the depths of my own nothingness;

I thank you for the many graces you have given me, and especially for having given me yourself in this Sacrament; for having given me Mary your Mother as my advocate, and for having called me to visit you in this church.

Bl. Peter Favre, Jesuit Priest, Theologian
(France, Italy: 1506-1546)

O my Lord, I beg you to take from me whatever divides, separates, and distances me from you and you from me. . . . Take from me all that makes me unworthy of your visitation. .

Have mercy on me, O Lord, have mercy on me always; drive far from me all the evil in me which hinders me from beholding you; from hearing you and delighting in you; from perceiving your fragrance . . . from loving and possessing you; from abiding in your presence and beginning to find delight in you

To locate an Adoration
Chapel nearest you

Conversations with God

Second Prayer
of St. Basil the Great

I know, O Lord, that I partake of Thy immaculate Body and precious Blood unworthily, and that I am guilty, and eat and drink judgment to myself by not discerning the Body and Blood of Thee my Christ and God.

But taking courage from Thy compassion I approach Thee, for Thou hast said: "He who eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood abides in Me and I in him."

Therefore have compassion, O Lord, and do not make an example of me, a sinner, but deal with me according to Thy mercy; and let these Holy Things be for my healing and purification and enlightenment and protection and salvation and sanctification of body and soul, for the turning away of every phantasy and all evil practice and diabolical activity working subconsciously in my members, for confidence and love towards Thee, for reformation of life and security, for an increase of virtue and perfection, for fulfillment of the commandments, for communion with the Holy Spirit, as a provision for eternal life, and as an acceptable defense at Thy dread Tribunal, not for judgment or for condemnation.

Message # 1667  January 20, 1999 The answers will be given to those who come and spend time with Me
'They must come and spend time with Me in front of the Blessed Sacrament.
They must pray and then listen so that I can direct each child individually.
The answers will be given to those who come and who spend time with Me."

"Each child must wait patiently for answers when they come to Me,
for I must prepare them first. Each child must become dependent on Me,
not their wealth, for their wealth will not get them to Heaven.
It is I, your merciful Lord, who will give you all that you need."

 - Message from Jesus to little mary

The Eucharist in Scripture

7: Cleanse out the old leaven that you may be a new lump, as you really are unleavened.
For Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed. (1 Cor 5:7)

"Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, 'Take, eat; this is my body.' And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, 'Drink of it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.'" (Mt. 26:26-28)

 Jesus says four times "I AM the bread from heaven." It is He, Himself,
the eternal bread from heaven.
John 6:35,41,48,51

John 6:55 - to clarify further, Jesus says "For My Flesh is food indeed, and My Blood is drink indeed." This phrase can only be understood as being responsive to those who do not believe that Jesus' flesh is food indeed, and His blood is drink indeed. Further, Jesus uses the word which is translated as "sarx." "Sarx" means flesh (not "soma" which means body). See, for example, John 1:13,14; 3:6; 8:15; 17:2; Matt. 16:17; 19:5; 24:22; 26:41; Mark 10:8; 13:20; 14:38; and Luke 3:6; 24:39 which provides other examples in Scripture where "sarx" means flesh. It is always literal.

More The Eucharist in Scripture

The Eucharist

The Holy Eucharist from EWTN



1. What is the Holy Eucharist?

The Eucharist is a sacrament, a sacrifice, and a sacred banquet. Under the appearance of bread and wine our Savior Jesus Christ is entirely present in this sacrament, body and blood, soul and divinity. In this sacrament He offers Himself in sacrifice to the Father, and is received as spiritual nourishment.

The word "Eucharist" means thanksgiving.  Our Lord in a most special way gave thanks to the Father as He offered it. Moreover, the Eucharistic sacrifice is the most excellent means we have of expressing our thanks to God.

2. Why is the Eucharist the center of Catholic life?

The Eucharist is the center of Catholic life precisely because Christ is the center of all our life. In this sacrament Christ gives Himself totally, that we might share His life and be bound together in His mystical body.

"No Christian community can be built up  unless it has its basis and center in the celebration of the Most Holy Eucharist" (PO 6). "For the Most Blessed Eucharist contains the Church’s entire spiritual wealth, that is, Christ Himself, our Passover and living bread" (PO 5).

3. Was the Eucharist foreshadowed in the Old Testament?

Yes. In every age God taught
 mankind to hope for salvation. But in the divine plan salvation was to be achieved only by the sacrifice Christ offered of Himself upon the cross, a sacrifice that is made present now in all places through the sacrifice of the Mass. The sacrifices of the old law could not of themselves bring salvation, but they could and did foreshadow the perfect sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

The Eucharist as sacrifice was symbolized in a special way in the sacrifice of the Paschal lamb, at the time God was about to lead His people from the slavery of Egypt and guide them toward the promised land. The Eucharist was represented by the manna given to sustain the people of God as they wandered through the desert to the homeland that God planned to give them.

4. When did Christ institute the Eucharist?

Jesus Christ instituted the Eucharist at the Last Supper which He celebrated with His apostles the night before He died for us. "He took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, ‘Take and eat, this is My body’ " (Matt. 26.26). Taking a cup of wine, he said: "This cup which is poured out for you is the new covenant in My blood" (Luke 22.20). Finally, he commanded the apostles to do as He had done: that in every place bread might become His body, and wine His blood, and that through His priests He might offer in every place the perfect sacrifice to the Father. "Do this in remembrance of Me" (1 Cor. 11.24).

    By offering this first Eucharistic sacrifice at the time of the paschal feast, Jesus indicated the fulfillment of the promises symbolized by the first Passover. Through the sacrifice of the cross, referred to and made symbolically and really present at this sacrificial meal, He redeemed the whole human race from the slavery of sin and made it possible for all to come to the Promised Land of heaven.

5. Was the Eucharist celebrated in the early Church?

Yes. In describing the life of the early Church, Christian writers of that time gave special attention to the Eucharist. For the Eucharist was the community’s essential celebration. It signified, and kept most real, the presence of Christ in the community.

    St. Luke says of the first Christians in Jerusalem: they "devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers" (Acts 2.42).

6. Why is the Mass called a true sacrifice?

A sacrifice is the offering of a victim by a priest to God alone, to acknowledge his divine sovereignty and to obtain his mercy. Now the Mass is called a true sacrifice because in it our High Priest, Jesus, truly offers Himself totally to the Father. Jesus does not rise and die again every time the Eucharistic liturgy is enacted, but His one sacrifice is made present to all in every celebration of the Mass. At Mass, as on the cross, Jesus is the chief priest; and the ministerial priest serves as His instrument. It is He who is the Victim, freely offering Himself as He did on the cross, freely offering the suffering and death He endured for us.

    But in the Mass His Church joins Him in the sacrifice. With Him, in obedience to Him, the Church also performs the role of priest and victim, making a total offering of itself together with Him.
7. Why do we call the presence of Jesus in the Eucharist a "real presence"?

Jesus is present to the Church in many ways. He is with the Church as she believes, prays, and does works of mercy. He is present in the activity of bishops and priests of the Church when they preach God’s word, govern His people, and administer His sacraments. All these presences of Jesus are of course real. But in speaking of the "real presence" in the Eucharist we are recalling that this is the fullest and most rich presence of Jesus. Jesus is present in many ways by His action, care, and power; but the Eucharist is Jesus. He is totally present wherever the Eucharist is present. He is present with all His humanity and all His divinity.

    Obviously Jesus does not take on a new miniature body to be present in the Eucharist. He has but one body, the body that once hung on the cross and is now at the right hand of the Father. What changes is not Jesus, or His glorious condition, but the number of places in which He is present. When bread is changed into His body, the one body of the Lord begins to be really present where there had been bread.

    "Instructed in these matters and certain in faith that what seems to be bread is not bread — though it tastes like it — but rather the Body of Christ, and that what seems to be wine is not wine — though it seems so to the taste — but the Blood of Christ … strengthen your heart by receiving this Bread as spiritual food and gladden the countenance of your soul" (St. Cyril of Jerusalem).

8. To whom is the Eucharistic sacrifice offered?

Because the Eucharist, which makes really present the sacrifice of the cross, is the supreme act of worship, it can be offered only to God.

9. For whom is the Eucharistic sacrifice offered?

At every Mass the chief priest is Christ, and His ministerial priest must share Christ’s universal saving purpose. Every Mass is offered for the salvation of all, the living and the dead.

    Often the faithful ask that a Mass be offered for a special intention; for example, for one who has died, for some spiritual or temporal need, or for giving thanks to the Lord. When Mass is said for a special intention, it is in truth only a plea that part of the fruits of Christ’s sacrifice might favor an intention for which one has special concern.

    When a financial offering is made with the request that Mass be said for such a special intention, this is to be understood as an expression of a desire to make a sacrifice of their own, joining that small sacrifice to the Eucharistic sacrifice. By this they also contribute in a particular way to the needs of the Church and the sustenance of its ministers.

-- More --

Introduction to the Eucharist
Articles and Audio programs that give a basic understanding of the Sacrament of the Eucharist, and the Mass.

The Eucharist in Scripture
Yes, the Bible affirms that Jesus is really present in the Holy Eucharist!

The Eucharist and Vatican II
Many people have distorted the Vatican II documents to down play the Eucharist. These pages contain actual excerpts in context to show what the documents really say.

Eucharistic Miracles
Since the beginning of Christianity, Jesus has demonstrated His Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament through Eucharistic Miracles. Our Omniscient Lord strengthens those of us with little faith by His miracles. We should not get 'caught up' in the search of miracles but be drawn closer to Jesus by those which Church authority has approved.

Mass and Liturgy
The Sacrifice of the Eucharist as the central act of worship of the Catholic Church. The "Mass" is a late form of missio (sending), from which the faithful are sent to put into practice what they have learned and use the graces they have received in the Eucharistic liturgy. The Mass cannot be understood apart from Calvary, of which it is a re-presentation, memorial, and effective application of the merits gained by Christ.*

ADORE-L Listserv
A moderated email based discussion group is available for those who are seriously interested in the Eucharist and Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration.

Other Topics
Annunciation, Incarnation, Nativity, Eucharistic Congresses, Letters by and Questions Asked of Fr. John A. Hardon and Recommended Books.

Spiritual Resources
A list of recommended books, videos, audios and periodicals on the Blessed Sacrament to increase your knowledge and devotion to the Eucharist.

The Real Presence
A deeper look at what the Catholic Church means when it says "Christ is Really Present in the Eucharist".

The Early Christians Believed in the Real Presence
What the most prominent early Christians (before 500 A.D.) believed about the Eucharist. Did they believe that the Eucharist was Jesus actually present or just a mere symbol?

Personal Testimonies
Many conversions, miracles, etc. have happened to everyday people thanks to Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. Listen to their stories!

Sacrament of the New Law, instituted by Christ at the Last Supper, which confers on a man the power of consecrating and offering the body and blood of Christ, and of remitting and retaining sins. *

Holy Communion
A special union of the soul with Christ. When the consecrated species is physically united with the communicant, the Eucharist confers actual graces to make acts of love for God and one's neighbor. It also curbs all disordered passions and confers a new title to the final resurrection of the body in heavenly glory. A final effect of Communion is to remove the personal guilt of venial sins, and the temporal punishment due to forgiven sins. *

Worship of the Eucharist Outside of Mass
Eucharistic Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle or through exposition. Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration is a wonderful devotion that adores Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament. Through a deeper love and closer relationship with Jesus, you acquire the strength, healing and peace to make it through your pilgrimage of life and to achieve your ultimate goal - Heaven and the Beatific Vision.

Links to other pages on the Eucharist
Your guide to the wide variety of material on the Eucharist.

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