Chapter 3: The Eucharist - Midwest Theological Forum

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Chapter 3: The Eucharist
THE SACRAMENTS – SOURCE OF OUR LIFE IN CHRIST
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Anticipatory Set
Opening Prayer on the first four paragraphs of Chapter 3.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
BASIC QUESTIONS
How is the institution of the Eucharist related to the Old Testament?
How is Christ the Bread of Life?
KEY IDEAS
Christ gave a new meaning to the Passover meal, the Paschal lamb, the
cup of consummation, and the blood of the Mosaic Covenant in the
Last Supper and in his Passion.
In his ‘Bread from Heaven’ discourse recorded in the Gospel of John,
after he miraculously fed 5000 and associated himself with the manna
from Heaven, Jesus declared he was the Bread of Life whose Flesh
men must eat and whose Blood men must drink in order for them to
have eternal life.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
What did the early Church mean by the term, the “Breaking of
the Bread”?
They meant the celebration of the Eucharist.
What is the last of the Sacraments of Christian Initiation?
The Eucharist.
How is the Eucharist different from the other Sacraments?
The other Sacraments give us the grace of God but the Eucharist
gives us Christ (God) himself.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
What is the Passover?
It is the great Jewish Feast commemorating the deliverance of the
Israelites from slavery in Egypt.
How did Jesus break custom during his last Passover meal?
He gave the unleavened bread to his disciples to eat, declaring it was his
Body, and then the wine to drink, saying it was his Blood.
What is the “Blood of the Covenant” and what did Jesus’ words
imply?
The “Blood of the Covenant” is the sacrificial blood that established the
Mosaic covenant between God and Israel. Jesus was implying that his
Blood would establish a New Covenant.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Guided Exercise
Read Exodus 12, on the Passover, which delivered the Chosen
People from slavery in Egypt, and on the Passover Meal, which
Moses ordered each family to repeat each year to commemorate
Israel’s deliverance from Pharaoh.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
What part of the Passover meal did Jesus omit at the Last Supper?
The “cup of consummation,” or final cup of wine, the most important
part of the meal.
How did Jesus refer to the cup of consummation as he prayed in
the Garden of Gethsemane?
He asked his Father to “remove this cup from me,” but declared he would
nevertheless drink it if it was his Father’s will.
How did Jesus refer to the cup of consummation when Peter fought
against Jesus’ arrest by cutting off the high priest’s slave’s ear?
Jesus told Peter to stop fighting because Jesus intended to “drink the cup
which the Father had given” him―in other words, the “cup of
consummation” left untouched at the Passover meal.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
How does Jesus refer to the “cup of consummation” on the Cross?
He said, “I thirst.”
How did the soldiers’ action relate back to the Passover?
The soldiers offered Jesus sour wine to drink soaked in a sponge on a
branch of hyssop. In the original Passover, the Israelites were instructed to
sprinkle the blood of the sacrificial lamb with a branch of hyssop.
What time of day did Pilate order Jesus crucified and what is
significant about that time?
Pilate ordered Jesus crucified at the sixth hour, the hour that the Passover
lambs were sacrificed.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Guided Exercise
Perform a paragraph shrink on the second paragraph of page 77
(beginning, “By choosing”) to sum up the link between the sacrifices
of the Old and New Testaments.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
How did God feed the Israelites when they wandered in the desert for forty
years?
He fed them with manna, bread from heaven.
How did Jesus feed the vast crowds that came to hear him?
He fed them with a miraculous multiplication of loaves and fishes.
How did Jesus compare himself to the manna?
He said he was the Bread of Life who would permanently take away hunger and
thirst.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
What further claims about himself did Jesus make as recorded in
John 6:51?
Jesus said he was living bread come down from Heaven, which would give
eternal life to those who consumed this bread. He said his Flesh was this
bread that he would give for the life of the world.
How did the crowds react to this?
They didn’t like what he said.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Focus Questions
How did Jesus’ hearers understand Jesus’ words in John 6:53-58 and how did the
word “eat” reinforce this understanding?
The crowd understood Jesus to mean cannibalism, reinforced by a word that is better
translated as “munch” rather than eat. Extension: The Israelites had, by God’s command, a
total aversion to blood, either touching it or ingesting it.
What did Jesus’ “Bread from Heaven” discourse do to his popularity?
He went from being followed by huge crowds to being accompanied by only the Twelve
Apostles.
Why didn’t the Apostles leave Jesus over this teaching?
While they didn’t understand Jesus’ teaching, nevertheless, as Peter put it, Jesus “had the
words of eternal life.”
What are the two interrelated truths of the Bread from Heaven discourse?
The Eucharist is spiritual food that gives graces for eternal life and the Eucharist is truly the
Body and Blood of Christ.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Closure
Write a paragraph that explores the Last Supper and Christ’s Passion
in terms of the Jewish Passover and the Blood of the Covenant.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Homework Assignment
Reading:
Pp. 79-83.
Questions:
Questions: 4-7; 13-15.
Workbook: 1-15.
1. The Institution of the Eucharist & Christ as
the Bread from Heaven (pp. 74-79)
Alternative Assessment
Using the “Bread of Life” discourse in the Gospel of John, work with
a partner to identify arguments showing that Christ was not speaking
metaphorically or symbolically when he said people needed to eat his
Flesh and drink his Blood.
This is an example of “apologetics”, or the use of reason, to defend
the Catholic Faith.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Anticipatory Set
Opening Prayer: The fifth decade of the Luminous Mysteries, the
Institution of the Eucharist.
Ten “Names of the Eucharist” on pages 81 & 83.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
BASIC QUESTIONS
How did the early Church understand Jesus’ ‘Bread from Heaven’
discourse and the Last Supper?
What is transubstantiation?
KEY IDEAS
It is the faith of the Church from the very beginning that in the
Eucharist, the bread and wine are transformed into the Body and
Blood of Christ, who is really and truly present sacramentally.
The change, or transformation, from bread and wine to Body and
Blood of Christ, is best termed transubstantiation, in which the entire
substance of the bread and the entire substance of the wine are
changed into the substance of the Body and Blood of Christ, with
only the appearances of bread and wine remaining.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Guided Exercise
List the arguments found in John’s Gospel that demand the Eucharist
be understood in literal, rather than symbolic, terms.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Focus Questions
What is the mystery of the Real Presence?
In the Sacrament of the Eucharist, the bread and wine really become the
Body and Blood of Our Lord with only the appearance of bread and wine
remaining.
Where was the Eucharist celebrated in the early Church?
In people’s homes.
How does St. Paul speak of the Eucharist in 1 Corinthians 10:16?
He says the Eucharist is a cup of blessing, which is a participation in the
Blood of Christ and bread that is broken, which is a participation the Body
of Christ.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Focus Questions
How does St. Paul speak of the Eucharist in 1 Corinthians 11:23-32?
He says the bread and cup are the Body and Blood of Christ, which the
Corinthian Christians must not consume in an unworthy manner.
What does St. Paul mean by the word “participate”?
In both the Old Testament and in pagan sacrifices, when one eats some of
the thing sacrificed, he participates in the sacrifice.
What does St. Paul mean by “discern”?
He means we must see the difference between the bread and wine of the
Eucharist and ordinary bread and wine.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Guided Exercise
Complete the following graphic to summarize in your own words
what St. Ignatius and St. Irenaeus said about the Real Presence of
Christ in the Eucharist.
Church
Father
St. Ignatius
St. Irenaeus
Two Early Church Fathers on the Real Presence
Date
Message
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Church
Father
St. Ignatius
St. Irenaeus
Two Early Church Fathers on the Real Presence
Date
Message
A.D. 107
He wants people to celebrate the Eucharist
according to the will of God. It is celebrated at an
altar with the bishop, priests and deacons, the
hierarchy of the Church. The Eucharist has to do
with the flesh and blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Late A.D. 100s The cup and bread are elements that come from
creation. The mixed cup (wine mixed with water)
and bread become the Eucharist, the body and
blood of Christ.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Guided Exercise
Read the sidebar “THE MIRACLE OF LANCIANO” and then visit the
following website, which goes into greater detail about recent scientific
investigations on the contents of the monstrance and chalice there:
http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/lanciano.html.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Focus Questions
How important was the Eucharist in the faith life of the early Church?
It was central. The early Church understood that the Eucharist Jesus established at the Last
Supper fulfilled what he said in John’s discourse. The Eucharist was the foundation of the
early Church’s prayer, community, and religious practice.
What does CCC 1376 say about the word “substance”?
By the consecration, a change of substance occurs. The substance of the bread is changed
into the substance of Christ’s Body and the substance of the wine is changed into the
substance of Christ’s Blood.
What does transubstantiation mean?
It is the technical term the Catholic Church uses to explain what happens to the bread and
wine at the moment of the consecration. The whole and entire substance of the bread and
the wine are changed into the substance of Christ’s Body and Blood. By an act of God,
there is no longer bread or wine present. Every single piece of bread and every single drop
of wine have been changed. Though the appearances of bread and wine remain, they have
truly become the Body and Blood of Christ.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Guided Exercise
Review the list of Church teachings in regard to the Real Presence in
the paragraph beginning, “Regarding the real presence” (p. 81).
Guided Exercise
Write five focus questions on the section, “NAMES OF THE
EUCHARIST.”
Exchange your questions with a partner and answer the partner’s
questions in writing.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Closure
Write a paragraph summarizing how the early Church understood
what Jesus meant in his Bread from Heaven discourse in John’s
Gospel and his words at the Last Supper.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Homework Assignment
Reading:
Pp. 83-87.
Questions:
Questions: 1; 17-19.
Workbook: 16-36.
Practical Exercises: 2-4.
2. The Real Presence of Christ in the
Eucharist (pp. 79-83)
Alternative Assessment
Free write on the meaning of the term transubstantiation, first
explaining what it means, and then discussing the mystery that the
term encompasses.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross, and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Anticipatory Set: Mini-lecture on the idea of the Mass as a memorial.
When we have a memorial for someone, we recall the person and his life
after he has died, in order to honor him. This is NOT what Christ meant
by “do this in memory of me.”
At the Last Supper, Jesus commanded his Apostles to repeat his words
and actions and their eating and drinking, saying, “Do this in memory of
me.” The Greek New Testament uses the word anemnesis, for what we have
translated as a calling to mind or remembering. More profoundly, anemnesis
means to see things from God’s perspective.
See diagram on page 50 of Workbook.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
 From God’s point of view, all things are eternally present. For
God, what we perceive as past, present, and future, is eternally and
completely in front of him. So when the priest says the words,
“This is my Body; this is my Blood,” God hears these words
simultaneously with them coming from the mouth of Jesus for the
first time.
 Sadly also when we sin, God sees this simultaneously with his Son
being nailed to the Cross.
 Therefore, when Christ said, Do this in anemnesis of me, he meant
something more like, Relive this moment or Return to this moment. By
extension, Christ was saying something like, When you repeat what I
have done, you will be connecting to this moment and the moment of my
Passion.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
BASIC QUESTIONS
How is the Eucharist related to the sacrifices of the Old Covenant?
How is the Eucharist related to the Cross?
How did the early Church celebrate the Eucharist?
KEY IDEAS
The Eucharist fulfills and transforms the sacrifices of the Old Covenant.
Every Mass is a participation in the Sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. In
his Passion, Christ offered himself in a physical, bloody manner. In the
Eucharist, he offers his Body and Blood in a sacramental, unbloody
manner under the appearances of bread and wine.
The early Church celebrated the Eucharist in essentially the same
manner that we do today, with a Liturgy of the Word and a Liturgy of the
Eucharist.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Focus Questions
How is the celebration of the Eucharist a memorial?
It is a reminder of Christ’s Passion and Death on the Cross.
How is the celebration of the Eucharist more than an ordinary
memorial?
The actual sacrifice of Christ is re-presented in the Liturgy of the
Eucharist.
How is the Mass related to the New Covenant?
The New Covenant, the saving and redemptive action of Christ, is
proclaimed at each Mass.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Guided Exercise
Many non-Catholics hold that when Jesus told the Apostles at the
Last Supper to “do this in memory of me,” he meant it to be a simple
recollection of that event.
Do a focused reading of CCC 1363 (p. 83) using the following
question:
How did the Old Testament understand “memorial?
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Focus Questions
What did Christ do with the tradition of the Jewish Passover?
He embraced it and transformed it into something new as part of his perfecting of the Old Law.
How did Melchizedek foreshadow the Mass?
The mysterious Priest/King Melchizedek offered a sacrifice of bread and wine with Abram
in thanksgiving for Abram’s defeat of four kings.
What are the four requirements of a sacrifice in the Old Testament and how is each
fulfilled in the Eucharist?
(1) In the Old Testament, a sacrifice is offered by a priest. In the Mass, Christ, the eternal
High Priest, offers the sacrifice through the ministry of the human priest.
(2) In the Old Testament, the victim is an unblemished male. The victim of the Eucharistic
sacrifice is Christ himself who is sinless.
(3) In the Old Testament, the sacrifice is offered in remission for sin. In the Eucharist, the
sacrifice of Christ on Calvary for our sins is re-presented.
(4) In the Old Testament, the sacrifice is destroyed in some manner to signify that the
offering is not for our own use but is intended for God. On Calvary, Christ’s Body was
broken. Though Christ is now in his Resurrected form, this same victim is present on our
altar at Mass. He is the offering we make to the Father.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Focus Questions
Why did the priests in the Old Testament consume the burnt
offering?
It was required by the Mosaic Law and united the priests to the sacrifice.
How do we become united to the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross?
By consuming the Eucharist in the reception of Holy Communion.
Extension: This is a mark of the common priesthood of the faithful: we
are priests because we consume the sacrifice.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross, and
the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Guided Exercise
A Think/Pair/Share on the following question:
How do the bread and wine offered in the Eucharist symbolize the one Body of
Christ?
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
THE NEW COVENANT SACRIFICE
Focus Questions
Why were the sacrifices of the Old Testament imperfect?
They had to be offered again and again.
Why is Christ’s sacrifice perfect?
It is eternal, it has infinite value, its benefits encompass all human history, it
repairs the damage caused by all the sins of the world, and it contains enough
grace for every person until the end of time.
How did the Didache in the first century understand the Mass as a
sacrifice?
The author of the Didache exhorted Christians to confess their sins and reconcile
with their neighbors before coming together so that their “sacrifice may be pure.”
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
THE NEW COVENANT SACRIFICE
Focus Questions
What does it mean to say that the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross
and the sacrifice of the Eucharist are one and the same?
It means that each Mass, including the Last Supper, renews, re-presents, or
reenacts Christ’s offering of himself to the Father on Calvary.
What is the difference between a Mass―including the Mass of the
Last Supper―and the Cross?
In his Passion, Christ offered his Body in a physical, bloody manner. In
the Eucharist, he offers his Body and Blood in a sacramental, unbloody
manner, under the appearances of bread and wine.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Guided Exercise
Perform a focused reading of the paragraph beginning, “The sacrifice of
the Mass,” using the following question:
An untold number of Masses have been offered since the Last Supper, and the Mass is
now offered countless times each day all over the world. Has Christ been re-crucified
that many times?
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Focus Questions
How do we share in Christ’s priesthood in the Eucharist?
We can offer up in the Mass our joys, sufferings, work, anxieties, relationships, and
ourselves, which are transformed and found acceptable to God the Father.
THE CELEBRATION OF THE MASS IN THE EARLY CHURCH
How did the first Christians worship?
Being Jews who believed Christ was the promised Messiah, they went to the
Temple or local synagogue on the Sabbath (Saturday) and then met privately on
the first day of the week (Sunday) for the “breaking of the bread,” or the
Eucharist.
What do these two events correspond to in today’s Mass?
The Sabbath worship conforms to the Liturgy of the Word and the Sunday
worship conforms to the Liturgy of the Eucharist.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
THE CELEBRATION OF THE MASS IN THE EARLY CHURCH
When the first Christians met, why did they tell stories about Christ
instead of read the Gospels aloud?
Because none of the New Testament books had been written. Only Oral
Tradition about Christ existed.
Why did Saturday worship end for the early Christians?
Because the Jewish Christians were eventually expelled from the Temple
and synagogues and because of the large influx of gentile Christians who
had no association with Jewish worship, the two parts of Christian worship
became united in one act of worship on Sunday, the day of Christ’s
Resurrection. Extension: The destruction of the Temple and of the
nation of Israel by the Romans also contributed to the separation of
Christians from their Jewish roots.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Guided Exercise
The writings of Justin Martyr give us detailed information regarding
the celebration of the Liturgy of the Mass.
Identify the various parts of the today’s Mass in The First Apology (p.
87).
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Closure
Write a paragraph which explains the relationship between what
Christ did on the Cross, what he did at the Last Supper, and what he
does at each subsequent Mass.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Homework Assignment
Reading:
Pp. 88-92.
Questions:
Questions: 8-12; 33-36.
Workbook: 37-44.
3. Old Covenant Sacrifices, the Cross,
and the Mass (pp. 83-87)
Alternative Assessment
Central to the Old and New Testaments, and something people in the
ancient world understood, was that sacrifices had to be made for sins, that
blood had to be shed to make up for the evil men do.
Free write for five minutes trying to explain this idea to modern young
people.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Anticipatory Set
Overview of the structure of the Mass as presented in this lesson,
especially the two major divisions of the liturgies of the Word and of
the Eucharist.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
BASIC QUESTIONS
What should we do before Mass?
What are the major divisions of the Mass?
What is the Eastern rite liturgy like?
KEY IDEAS
It is important to personally prepare for Mass.
The Mass consists of two parts, the Liturgy of the Word and the
Liturgy of the Eucharist.
The Eastern rite Divine Liturgy and the Latin rite Liturgy of the
Mass are in essentials the same.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Focus Questions
Why are arriving a little early, making the Sign of the Cross with Holy Water,
genuflecting, and praying for a few minutes good ways to prepare for Mass?
Arriving early gives one time to become recollected and to pray. Making the Sign of the
Cross with Holy Water is a way of honoring the Blessed Trinity, recalling our Baptism,
and asking for purity. Genuflecting in the direction of the Tabernacle silently
acknowledges the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Praying helps us focus on
what is to come.
Why does the priest kiss the altar after he enters the sanctuary?
The priest kisses the altar because this is where the Sacrifice of Christ will be renewed.
Extension: It is, in a sense, kissing the Cross of Christ or kissing Christ himself.
How would the author of the Didache recognize the Penitential Rite of today’s
Mass (p. 85)?
In the Penitential Rite we ask God to forgive our sins and failures, just as the author of
the Didache advised the early Christians to “confess your sins so that your sacrifice may
be pure.”
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Focus Questions
What are the sources of the readings in the Mass?
They are taken from the Old Testament, the Psalms, the New Testament
Epistles, and finally from one of the Gospels.
How are the readings different for Sunday and weekday Masses?
The Sunday Masses are on a three-year cycle and daily Masses are on a
two-year cycle.
Extension: One of the reforms of the liturgy from the Second Vatican
Council was to greatly expand the variety of Biblical readings used in the
Mass, so the faithful would have a much wider contact with the Scriptures.
Why was the Liturgy of the Word once also known as the Mass of
the Catechumens?
Because those who were not baptized, i.e., catechumens, were dismissed
(L. mittere, the source of the word mass) before the Liturgy of the
Eucharist began.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Guided Exercise
A Think/Pair/Share on the following question:
What is the most important part of the Eucharistic Prayer and why?
Guided Exercise
A Think/Pair/Share on the following question:
What do you think is the most important part of the Communion Rite for the faithful
and why?
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Guided Exercise
Based on the sidebar, “BYZANTINE RITE LITURGY OF THE
EUCHARIST,” work with a partner to identify the most striking
contrasts you notice between the Eastern rite Liturgy and the Latin
rite.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Closure
Write a paragraph summarizing the structure of the Mass.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Homework Assignment
Reading:
 Pp. 93-98.
Questions:
 Workbook: 45-52.
4. The Liturgy of the Mass (pp. 88-92)
Alternative Assessment
Free write for a few minutes on the section of the Mass that you
consider the most important with the reason why.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Anticipatory Set
How to make a visit to the Blessed Sacrament:
Enter silently out of respect for the Eucharist;
Use holy water;
Genuflect;
Spend a few moments in silent or public prayer while kneeling; and
Genuflect and leave silently.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
BASIC QUESTIONS
Why should we prepare well for and have the proper dispositions toward the
Eucharist?
What are some of the devotions to the Blessed Sacrament outside the Mass?
Who is the proper minister of the Eucharist?
What is koinonia?
KEY IDEAS
We should internally and externally prepare for Mass and have the proper
dispositions in approaching in order to benefit from its infinite riches.
Devotion to the Eucharist outside of Mass, such as in Eucharistic Adoration and
Benediction, manifest love for the Real Presence of Christ.
The proper minister of the Eucharist is the bishop or priest.
Koinonia, or communion, is our deep relationship with Christ and the Church.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
Why might it be a good idea to look over the readings for the day before
Mass?
The Mass readings are specially chosen so they relate to the Mass of the day and to
each other.
Why does it make sense to receive the Eucharist every day if possible?
Because the Eucharist is the summit of the Christian life and each reception brings
us closer to Christ.
In the Mass, how do we participate with both our bodies and our souls?
Extension: We take part in physical signs, for example, consuming Communion,
and perform physical actions, such as standing, sitting, and kneeling. We use our
intellects in listening to the readings and the homily, trying to understand them. We
use our wills, trying to keep distractions to a minimum and making acts of faith,
hope, and love.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Guided Exercise
Free write on the following question:
Of the seven considerations for internal preparation for Mass listed in the student
text (pp. 93-94), which one do you consider personally the most helpful and why?
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Guided Exercise
Free write on which of the six points of external participation you find
the most challenging to carry out and why. Write about how you could
improve in this regard.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
DEVOTIONS OUTSIDE OF MASS
Focus Question
How did the practice of devotion to the Blessed Sacrament outside
of the Mass develop?
In the early Church, some of the Eucharist was reserved to bring to those
who could not attend Mass, such as the sick. Because Christians recognized
Christ was really present in the reserved species, a number of Eucharistic
devotions developed.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Guided Exercise
Complete the following graphic to organize your knowledge of
Eucharistic Devotions outside Mass.
Visit to the Blessed
Sacrament
Exposition
Benediction
Eucharistic Processions
Eucharist Devotions outside Mass
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Eucharist Devotions outside Mass
Visit to the Blessed
Visiting a tabernacle in which the Eucharist is being
Sacrament
reserved to talk to God.
Exposition
The Eucharist is exposed in a Monstrance and
believers gather to pray and meditate in front of
Christ.
Benediction
A quasi‐liturgical service at the end of which the
faithful are blessed with the Eucharist.
Eucharistic Processions
The Eucharist is carried in a solemn procession to
show public adoration of Christ.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
THE MINISTERIAL PRIESTHOOD
Focus Questions
Who is the minister of the Sacrament of the Eucharist?
A bishop or priest.
Where does the bishop or priest get the power to change bread and wine into the
Body and Blood of Christ?
When the bishop or priest says the words of consecration, it is Christ the eternal high
priest who changes the substances of the bread and wine into his substance.
Who are the ordinary ministers of distributing Holy Communion?
Bishops, priests, and deacons.
Who are extraordinary ministers of distributing Holy Communion?
If need exists, lay persons may be appointed to distribute Communion to those present at
the Mass or to those who cannot attend Mass because of infirmity or old age.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
A SOURCE OF UNITY IN CHRIST
Focus Questions
How is the unity of the faithful as the Body of Christ created?
It is established in Baptism and fully expressed in the Eucharist.
What did the Greek word koinonia mean at the time of Christ?
It meant a joint venture, such as a business partnership, in which the
owners worked together for a common good.
What did the New Testament writers use koinonia to refer to?
The relationship between the members of the Church.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
What two dimensions exist for the shared owner of an undertaking?
Each owner has a personal stake in the enterprise and a relationship and
shared interest with the other owners.
What is the vertical dimension of koinonia?
Each Christian has a personal, or vertical, relationship with Christ and is
responsible for responding to Christ’s will for him or her.
Extension: The relationship is vertical because one member is above the
other in a hierarchical relationship, i.e., Christ is our head.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
What is the horizontal dimension of kiononia?
Every Christian has a shared, or horizontal, relationship with the other
members of the Christian community with whom they share a common
goal: love for others.
Extension: This relationship is horizontal, because all the members are
essentially equal.
How does the Eucharist strengthen both dimensions of koinonia?
In the Eucharist, a person receives individual graces from Christ, which
strengthen his or her relationship with God. He or she is also more firmly
united to the other members of the Church.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Guided Exercise
A Think/Pair/Write/Share on the following question based on On the
Way to Jesus Christ (p. 96):
What is Pope Benedict XVI’s understanding of St. Paul’s statement that the Eucharist
is a participation in Christ?
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
Why is it good to receive the Eucharist often, even daily?
Because the Eucharist offers us infinite graces.
Why should we receive Communion at every Mass we attend,
assuming we are sufficiently prepared and in a state of grace?
Because it fulfills the call to become one body in Christ.
Extension: Prior to the 1900’s, there were times when people infrequently
received the Eucharist out of a misguided sense of unworthiness related to
the Jansenist heresy.
How often does the Church require her members to receive
Communion?
At least once per year, during the period from Ash Wednesday to Trinity
Sunday.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
What is perhaps the most important moment to receive the Eucharist?
When death is imminent.
How grave a sin is sacrilege against the Eucharist?
Because of the infinite value of the Eucharist, any act of sacrilege or
disrespect against the Eucharist is a very grave sin.
What did St. Paul say about those who receive the Eucharist in a state
of serious sin?
He said they profane the Body and Blood of the Lord and bring judgment
upon themselves.
How does one keep a good balance between going to Communion
unworthily and being overly scrupulous about one’s worthiness?
Frequent Confession and regular spiritual direction.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Focus Questions
Why is possible for every Catholic to become a saint?
Because we receive enough grace to become a saint in every
Communion.
What limits the infinite graces of each Communion?
Our capacity to receive these graces.
How can we increase our disposition to receive the graces of
the Eucharist?
By following the minimum requirements the Church sets, preparing
internally and externally for each Mass, and cooperating with the
graces God gives us by conforming our wills to his.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Closure
Write a paragraph that explains the idea of koinonia as it describes
the relationship between the members of the Body of Christ.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Homework
Reading:
 P. 99.
Questions:
 Questions: 2-3; 16; 20-32.
 Workbook: 53-73.
 Practical Exercise 5.
5. Getting the Most Out of the Eucharist,
the Minister & Koinonia (pp. 93-98)
Alternative Assessment
Write a letter to an imaginary second grader giving advice on how
best to prepare for his or her First Communion.
The End

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