“At the heart of the Eucharistic celebration are the bread and wine that, by the words of Christ and the invocation of the Holy Spirit, become Christ's Body and Blood. Faithful to the Lord's command the Church continues to do, in his memory and until his glorious return, what he did on the eve of his Passion: "He took bread... ." "He took the cup filled with wine. . . " The signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1333)
Source and Summit
The Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian life,” and the third sacrament of initiation. "It is the culmination both of God's action sanctifying the world in Christ and of the worship men offer to Christ and through him to the Father in the Holy Spirit." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1324,1325)
The Eucharist: Faith Facts
Before one receives Holy Communion, it is appropriate to bow before the Sacred Host or Chalice, because the bread and wine have truly become the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. After the priest or minister says, “The Body of Christ” or “The Blood of Christ,” we respond, “Amen,” and receive the Body of Christ on the tongue or in the hand, consuming it immediately. The Blood of Christ we drink, holding the chalice reverently and returning it to the priest or minister.
Initiation to the Eucharist
Children are generally admitted to Communion during 2nd Grade. First Holy Communion is usually celebrated in the month of May. Preparation for children receiving their First Holy Communion requires participation in a two year parish program. It is imperative that during the preparation program that parents and children attend Mass every Sunday. (more info)
If a child is older than 2nd Grade and has not received Communion, the parents should contact Connie Rollins, Director of Religious Education to make appropriate arrangements.
Scriptural Reference for the Sacrament of Holy Communion:
“While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, ‘Take and eat; this is my body.’ Then he took a cup, gave thanks,and gave it to them, saying, ‘Drink from it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins’.”
- Matthew 26:26-28