During his general audience, Pope Francis spoke on the significance of the Sacrament of the Eucharist, explaining that it is a banquet which reminds us of the eternal life that is yet to come.
(CNA/EWTN News) - "The Eucharist configures us in a unique and profound way with Jesus," the Pope noted in his Feb. 5 general audience, "renewing our heart, our existence, and our relationship with Him and with our brothers, and gives us a foretaste of communion with the Father in the banquet of the King of heaven."
Addressing the thousands gathered in a rainy St. Peter's Square for his weekly address, the pontiff continued his catechesis on the Sacraments of Initiation, turning specifically to the Sacrament of the Eucharist.
Light up the darkness by going here --
"Dear Brothers and Sisters," he began, "in our catechesis on the sacraments of Christian initiation, we now reflect on the Eucharist, the sacrament of Christ's Body and Blood."
This sacrament "is the heart of Christian initiation and the Church's fountain of life," the Pope explained, which "accompanies every step of our pilgrimage of faith, fellowship and witness."
Shifting attention to the familiar layout of Catholic churches, the Pope observed that in the "center.we find the altar," which is "a table that has been prepared and that makes us think of a banquet," and "on the table, there is a cross to indicate that Christ's sacrifice is offered on that altar."
"He is the food we receive under the species of bread and wine," the Pope continued, adding that "next to the table, there is the ambo, which is where the Word of God is proclaimed, through which the Lord speaks to us."
Recalling how Jesus gave us this sacrament at the Last Supper "when he broke bread and offered the cup," the pontiff noted that this act was a "foreshadowing of his sacrifice on the Cross."
"In the Eucharistic sacrifice, Jesus has thus given us the supreme prayer of thanksgiving to God our merciful Father," he explained, highlighting that the Church "performs the memorial of the Easter of the Lord, in which Christ is made mysteriously present and we are able to participate."
We can say that we "receive communion," in Jesus' "passion, death and resurrection," the Pope stated, and "thus, the Eucharist configures us in a unique and profound way with Jesus."
It renews "our heart, our existence, and our relationship with Him and with our brothers, and gives us a foretaste of communion with the Father in the banquet of the King of heaven."
Concluding his reflections, Pope Francis expressed his hope that "the celebration of the Eucharist always keeps the Church alive, and makes our communities distinguished by love and communion."
"Let us ask the Lord, present in this holy sacrament, always to shape our lives and our communities."
Following his remarks, the Pope offered special greetings to groups of pilgrims present from various countries around the world, and imparted his Apostolic Blessing.
Pope Francis calls for your 'prayer and action'...
By Deacon Frederick Bartels
The dream of God is a dream of unending, divine love. His only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, sacrificed his human life for this Dream: the redemption of humankind and the gift of eternal life and perfect happiness. Heaven is the divine dream that is not but a dream, it ... continue reading
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Pope Francis is said to be considering a trip to Cuba this coming September. The papal visit would tie into his visit to the United States. The gesture could lead to improving relations both between Cuba and the U.S. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Vatican ... continue reading
By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
In a 14th century book, a green-skinned character was painted, resembling Yoda. Just like the Star Wars icon, the painted character in the old religious documents is donning a white cloak and has spiky, long fingers and the pointed ears sticking out. Although there is ... continue reading
By CNA/EWTN News
Pope Francis has warned against gender theories which seek to eradicate differences between man and woman, saying they perpetuate the very problems they are trying to solve. (CNA/EWTN News) - "Experience teaches us: to know each other well and grow in harmony, ... continue reading
By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Women, and men, should be wary of whom they shall live with for the rest of their lives. Marriage is not a temporary commitment, it lasts for a lifetime no matter how you will put it --- two people still shared the same vows to cherish one another through a sacred ... continue reading
By Nikky Andres (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Pope Francis will host a major summit on April 28 entitled "Protect the Earth, Dignify Humanity: The Moral Dimensions of Climate Change and Sustainable Development." MUNTINLUPA, PHILIPPINES (Catholic Online) - The conference will feature famous American economist, ... continue reading
By Deacon Ian VanHeusen
Among many Christians who are honestly seeking to deepen their prayer life, there is a genuine concern about erroneous forms of prayer. People should be careful to accept practices which diverge from the faith they have received, whether through the family or in a ... continue reading
By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
The year-long inquiry into American nuns by the Holy See's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has concluded, and will not take any action against the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), the body that governs around 80 percent of nuns in the ... continue reading
By Hannah Raissa Marfil (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Reverend Percy McCray suggests that leaders of faith should undergo in-depth training programs to better deal with cancer-stricken patients and their hurting families. According to McCray, as it stands now, most churches across the United States lack the proper ... continue reading
By Tony Magliano
According to the New York Times, during a White House luncheon in 1954 Winston Churchill said, "To jaw-jaw [talk-talk] always is better than to war-war." While clearly not a pacifist, the United Kingdom's World War II prime minister had seen upfront the absolute horror ... continue reading