Our strength and portion
Since the Holy Eucharist is the source and summit of Christian life, a Christian who is not centered in the Holy Eucharist is not well-established in life and does not have a proper goal.
In elementary school, teachers tell us that we need to eat, reside in a house and wear clothes so that we may live.
The Christian, being more than just a physique needs to source out spiritual food, shelter and clothing for his body-soul in the Holy Eucharist.
In the Sacred Host (his Body) and Wine (his Blood), Jesus Christ appears as true food and true drink (cf. John 6:55), helps us make our home in him (cf. John 8:31-32) and clothes us in robes of dignity befitting children of our heavenly Father (cf. Revelation 22:14).
When we Christians do not partake of the Holy Eucharist, we deprive ourselves of our most vital provision in our long pilgrimage in this world.
In the Old Testament, when the prophet Elijah fled from the pagan queen Jezebel who wanted to kill him after he ordered the slaughter of the prophets of Baal, an angel appeared with bread and a jar of water to give him courage.
“Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you,” the angel told Elijah. The Bible continues, “So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God (cf. 1 Kings 19:1-8).”
What the angel served Elijah prefigured the Holy Eucharist. Life is too much for us so we need to get up and receive the Body and Blood of Christ.
Today there may be no godless monarch trying to hunt us down but the unholy triumvirate of the flesh, the world and the Devil (cf. 1 John 2:15-23) do continute to wage battles against us.
Our heavenly Father does not want us to fear them, and while He may not send us angels to remind us to go to Mass, listen to his Word and receive his very self in Holy Communion to conquer our foes and complete our mission, He sends us people who remind us to do so.
History is witness to a steady stream of clergymen, religious and lay persons who completed very well their life’s work and lived with constant joy because they realized and responded to their need for the Eucharist.
The Diocese of Musoma in Tanzania opened in January 2005 the cause for the beatification of the country’s founding president, Julius Nyerere.
According to Catholic World News, Nyerere, a convert to the Catholic Church at age 21 attended Mass daily. Due to his contributions to his country, it was counted among the most peaceful nations in Africa.
The cause for the canonization of J.R.R. Tolkien is a topic of discussion among his Catholic readers. To them, he is more than just the creator of Middle-earth and the author of classic literature like “The Silmarillion,” “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings.” He is a model of devotion to the Holy Eucharist.
In a letter to one of his sons, Tolkien wrote:
“Out of the darkness of my life, so much frustrated, I put before you the one great thing to love on earth: the Blessed Sacrament… There you will find romance, glory, honor, fidelity, and the true way of all your loves on earth…”
“The only cure for sagging or fainting faith is Communion. Though always Itself, perfect and complete and inviolate, the Blessed Sacrament does not operate completely and once for all in any of us. Like the act of Faith it must be continuous and grow by exercise. Frequency is of the highest effect. Seven times a week is more nourishing than seven times at intervals.”
Christ broke himself in the Eucharist to save our lives. When we accept this gift it enriches us so that our lives may be a gift of thanksgiving to God, so that our lives may become, in a word, Eucharistic.