Faith/Spirituality Forum: The Last Supper
The Last Supper QUESTION from Helena on September 24, 2002 I have a problem with the church's teaching on the Eucharist. I want to belive it, but it is a real struggle. Yet, I know that if someone were to place a consecrated host on the floor and ask me to crush it underfoot, I would not be able to. So I guess that, whatever my occasional, and re-curring, objections, there must be a faith in me on this.
However, I know that it will be a help if you would answer an objection that keeps coming back to me:
At the Last Supper, Jesus was still alive 'in the flesh'. So how is it then, that when He said this is My body and this is My blood could it have been meant literally? What I mean is, how could the bread have been His flesh- He was standing there in His flesh at the time He said it.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on September 24, 2002 Dear Helena:
I thank you for your honest and for your loyalty to the Church despite your concerns about this teaching on the Eucharist.
It is my understanding that the Eucharist at the Last Supper was a pre-curser to the Eucharist as we know it in the Real Presence. Jesus was establishing the ceremony and ritual that would become the Mass. He was establishing what would become his Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity.
Jesus said that he would always be with us. The Eucharist is howhe is with us literally. The celebration of the Mass, other than its establishment in the Last Supper, thus, was not performed until after Pentecost.
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