Living the Gospel – June 3, 2018

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Today we celebrate the moment when Jesus, on the night he was betrayed gave us the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. The occasion is centered on the celebration of the feast of unleavened bread which was observed by the Jewish people to commemorate the Passover meal. While He was celebrating the Passover with the twelve apostles, Jesus took bread, blessed it, broke it and gave it to them saying “take it, this IS my body.” Then He took the cup of wine, gave it to them saying “this IS my blood of the covenant which will be shed for many.”

After the protestant reformation, the big debate was whether Holy Communion is really the body and blood of Christ or is it just a symbol of Christ’s body and blood. Protestants believe it is only a symbol, and Catholics believe Holy Communion is actually Christ’s body and blood. When I read Mark 14:22-24 in the bible, it uses the word IS. This IS my body. This IS my blood. No mention of it being a symbol.

Holy Communion is a sacrament that when one partakes of it, it gives you the power and the strength that you need to do God’s work. Think of it as being spiritual nourishment. It could not do that if it were only a symbol. Protestants believe that this power was given to us by Christ’s dying on the cross and not from Holy Communion. So who is right or who is wrong? I will leave that question for the theologians to figure out. What I know is that we will be judged based on our ability to be good Christians, showing our love for God and all His creation. Maybe we should try to focus on what we have in common, rather than our differences. Remember that God loves all of us. And let us give thanks to God for giving us the sacrament of Holy Eucharist. I feel closest to God when I receive Holy Communion.

Thanks be to God.

Lloyd Lapierre