This series is to ready us for our return to regular celebrations of the Eucharist, as the center of our lives, and to give us a deeper appreciation of this wonderful mystery of Christ’s love. We have been considering the wider reality of what is happening. We seek the fullness of Christ in his many real presences or aspects of the Word made flesh to give us share in his closeness to the Father.
We have reached a point of examining what names the Church applies to this great Mystery in the scriptures and in the liturgy. There are various names for the same reality. Each name broadens our view of God’s unmatched love for us. So for your consideration today we shall begin by noting some of the names Church tradition uses. Why the different names? Where do they come from? What implications do they have for us and eternal life?
The Mass is sometimes referred to as the Body and Blood of Christ
The Church refers to this reality also as the Bread of life and the cup of salvation.
She also speaks of it as the Bread of life and cup of blessing.
Sometimes it is called food/nourishment of eternal life.
Sometimes as the pledge of salvation.
Sometimes it is called the Lamb of God
Sometimes it is called the gift of God’s (covenant) love.
Jesus himself identifies what is in the cup as Blood of the Covenant
And the offering/sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins
These all are the same Christ, same Body and Blood. There is something more here than we first realize. Our search for understanding goes deeper.
To understand this use of various names and titles we first go to Liturgy 101 (coming next).
This will help us grasp more of the Mystery of the Body and Blood of Christ.