Bishop Sheen explained it like this, "As a man must be born before he can begin to lead his physical life, so he must be born to lead a Divine Life. That birth occurs in the Sacrament of Baptism. To survive, he must be nourished by Divine Life; that is done in the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist."
We have a problem in the Church today. There is a spiritual virus that is attacking our very soul and the Church. That problem is that we do not recognize something that is very important. The problem is that we do not even recognize that we do not see it. There that is a true problem- a problem you do not realize or see.
Maybe that is why it is a problem.
When Christ said: I am the living bread which came down from heaven. If any man eats this bread, he shall live forever; and the bread that I will give, is my flesh, for the life of the world. (John 6: 51-52)
. . . a great many of his disciples no longer followed our Lord anymore. They left Him.
The Jews, therefore, strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us his flesh to eat? (John 6: 53) Many therefore of his disciples, hearing it, said: This saying is hard, and who can hear it? (John 6: 61) Many therefore of his disciples, hearing it, said: This saying is hard, and who can hear it? (John 6: 61) After this, many of His disciples went back to their old ways; and walked no more in His company. (John 6: 67)
Every Liturgy we have the real presence of Jesus Christ yet few people actually recognize it. How is this possible? Doesn’t the Church teach us all about this when we are young?
The answers are both amazing and disturbing. Let us look at some of the answers and the disconnect that appears between what is being taught by the Church and beliefs held by people who attend the Church.
Transubstantiation – is the idea that during Liturgy (Mass), the bread and wine used for Communion become the body and blood of Jesus Christ. This is very central to the Catholic faith. Indeed, the Catholic Church teaches that “the Eucharist is ‘the source and summit of the Christian life.”
But an August 2019 Pew Research Center survey finds that most self-described Catholics don’t believe this core teaching. In fact, nearly seven-in-ten Catholics (69%) say they personally believe that during Catholic Mass, the bread and wine used in Communion “are symbols of the body and blood of Jesus Christ.” Just one-third of U.S. Catholics (31%) say they believe that “during Catholic Mass, the bread and wine actually become the body and blood of Jesus.”
In addition to asking Catholics what they believe about the Eucharist, the new survey also included a question that tested whether Catholics know what the church teaches on the subject. Most Catholics who believe that the bread and wine are symbolic do not know that the church holds that transubstantiation occurs. Overall, 43% of Catholics believe that the bread and wine are symbolic and also that this reflects the position of the church. Still, one-in-five Catholics (22%) reject the idea of transubstantiation, even though they know about the church’s teaching.
Is there any wonder why we have this problem? Just look at the Coronavirus and what this has done to fears of people in different Dioceses. Maybe we need to look no further than how we view it a time of worry and panic. On Feb. 29, 2020, Houston-area Archdiocese Cardinal Daniel DiNardo advised Saturday that parishioners limit physical contact at mass. In the wake of the spread of coronavirus, the Galveston-Houston Archdiocese has called upon area parishes to suspend the distribution of Holy Communion from the Chalice and distribute Holy Communion only under the form of the Host, out of precaution.
Typically, at most mass ceremonies, parishioners would drink wine from a chalice for communion, but DiNardo is requesting that practice be limited until further notice. Instead, parishioners will only receive the "Host," typically a form of bread, during the ceremony. DiNardo believes the elimination of Communion from the Chalice "should help minimize any risk for the members of the liturgical assembly who present themselves for the reception of the Holy Eucharist." Additionally, DiNardo said that anyone who is ill is under no obligation to be present for Sunday Mass. He said that parishioners should take some "common sense steps” regarding their health, including respecting that some people may be uncomfortable with physical contact during times of Mass such as the Lord's Prayer and the Sign of Peace. DiNardo also recommended persons receive the Holy Communion by hand, instead of it being placed in their mouth by the ministers, though he is not demanding it.
Here are some issues
- The host typically a form of bread during the ceremony (The Church Teaches It Is the Body of Christ)
- The elimination of Communion from the Chalice (The Precious Blood Of Jesus is eliminated)
- Anyone who is ill is under no obligation to be present for Sunday Mass (How about if you are tired or do not feel like going- what precedent do you establish here by doing this?)
We must remember at all times the Eucharist is the Body of Christ. How can people worry about getting a disease from the Body of Christ or the Blood of Christ? If we use terms like bread and wine, is there any wonder that the people that attend Church are confused and even the people who do attend Church be confused?
During this season we must have the faith of the leper, the faith of the blind man, the faith of the hemorrhaging woman, or the father of the Prodigal Son and remember that Jesus Christ cured people of their disease with his body. He was not afraid to have them touch him, was he? Why should we be afraid to touch him? Sometimes we must think more about our beliefs, believe more in our faith and worry a great deal less about things that we already know the answers all about.
There is a virus that is going around- a spiritual virus that attacks the Church and your soul.
Bishop Fulton Sheen, "When I stand up to talk, people listen to me; they will follow what I have to say. Is it any power of mine? Of course not. St. Paul says, 'What have you that you have not received and you who have received, why do you glory as if you had not?' But the secret of my power is that I have never in fifty-five years missed spending an hour in the presence of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. That's where the power comes from. That's where sermons are born. That's where every good thought is conceived."