Listening to a radio commentary on the Catholic Channel, over Sirius Radio this morning, the theme today was 50% of Catholics do not believe in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. This is not good since the Holy Eucharist is the essence of the Holy Mass and the very center of our belief in Christ and all that He taught us about His Father, the forgiveness and mercy of God, and the ultimate Resurrection of our bodies to our immortal souls.
Take that information and chew on the tenets of what faith in God is all about, from the perspective of the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, it’s adherence to the Paschal Mystery, and why Almighty God created us and all that we enjoy, through Him.
My most recent article How Beautiful! “The Holy Mass” delves in ways that behoove the skeptics’ disbeliefs in what we as Catholics have held onto since the first century AD. One comment a caller to the radio program related was how one priest, after elevating the patten and chalice at the Consecration said, “I do believe this is the Body of Christ and This is the Blood of Christ. Could there be any better way to proclaim these species are not symbols, but the actual living elements of Christ?
Real Flesh and Real Blood. Remember what happened when Jesus told his followers the following how many drifted away with, “This saying is hard; who can accept it?” (Jn. 6: 60) “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.” (Jn. 6: 53) Of all the verses or statements from Jesus, there are no words more profound than these.
If you watch or listen to most of the TV evangelists notice that all of them avoid preaching about or even referring to John chapter 6. The real presence of Christ is not even hinted at. Its all symbolism, in their estimation, and they will expand on that. But real flesh and real blood; never a word. Why? Because to do that would confirm the Catholic teaching about the Theology of the Eucharist and if they believed that, why are they not adhering to the Catholic Church and converting back to the one true religion? I heard an Episcopal priest preach on the section of Jesus handing Peter the keys of the kingdom and professing the gates of Hell would not overcome it. He didn’t take long to deny that this had anything to do with the Chair of Peter (Ex-Cathedra). So much denial to support their distaste with Roman Catholicism, the real presence, Mary, Purgatory, and any other truths we teach.
Once these ministers, (not all) see through the veil of confusion they grew up with, their heads will turn to investigate, using more than just scripture which they misinterpret, and begin to search the Tradition the Catholic Church teaches and demands as part of its belief system. It has taken centuries of living, teaching, and the deep intellect of so many giants like Augustine, Aquinas, Basil, Gregory Nazianzen, and many other Doctors of the Church to prove beyond any doubt the truths the Catholic Church holds dear and lasting.
Cardinal John Wright once said, “It took 400 years for the church to split and may take another 400 years for it to come back together.” We may be on the edge of that prediction and hopefully find those who disbelieve and teach those wrongs will come to realize the errors of their ways.
Of all the different attacks or denials of the Teachings and beliefs of the Catholic Church this perhaps is the most serious. Roman Catholics should be taught, as we were in the 40’s and 50’s, that communion is more than a reward for something, but it is an invitation to share what Jesus told us that he is real flesh and blood and there is no salvation without this sacrament. Not a thing to do, but a way to live with the real presence of Christ within our own bodies. Tastes like bread, but is real flesh. Tastes like wine, but is real blood. Sounds like something out of a Sci-Fi novel, but it is not. We are told that to believe in this theology of the Eucharist is a gift from God and that is Divine Grace.
Ralph B. Hathaway July 2019