The real presence of Jesus is felt in the Eucharist

  • Follow Your Faith

The Catholic Church celebrates the feast of Corpus Christi on Sunday. Locally, the Church of the Most Holy Trinity will celebrate with a procession, starting at the front steps of the church at 2 p.m.

This Eucharistic procession represents the full sacramental Catholic belief that Jesus' love is truly expressed at every Holy Mass, with the Holy Spirit consecrating the bread offered into Christ's body and the wine offered into Christ's blood, as Jesus first did at the Last Supper.

What is the Church's teaching about the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist?

Jesus, when he was at the Last Supper, instituted the Eucharist, the sacrament of his real divine personal presence as the body of Christ revealed with the breaking of the bread, the bread which becomes his real being.

Likewise, when Jesus said the blessing and uttered the words over the cup of wine at that Last Supper, the wine was changed really and substantially to become his real blood.

All Catholics believe that the forms of bread and wine at the Eucharist are actually transformed and consecrated by the power of the Holy Spirit to be transubstantiated into the body and blood of our Lord Jesus.

That is why every Catholic church has a tabernacle to contain and preserve the real presence of Christ alive.

All Catholics receive with faith at each Mass the holy sacramental love of Jesus when they eat his body under the form of the bread and drink his blood under the form of wine . It is the real actual presence of our Savior's coming into our hearts and souls to share his divinity with us.

The Rev. Michael Lubinksy is the parochial vicar at the Church of the Most Holy Trinity on Telfair Street in Augusta.

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howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 09:12 am
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I thought "the real presence

I thought "the real presence of Christ" was in the heart of every true believer, not in a piece of bread of cup of wine? According to Paul, the real temple of the Holy Spirit is our body and not some man-made tabernacle.

lovingthesouth72
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lovingthesouth72 06/13/09 - 09:26 am
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How can you know

How can you know howcanweknow? Come to an RCIA class at any local Catholic Church and you will understand the Real Presence. He is there, in the consecrated bread and wine, now the true Body,Blood and Divinity of Christ. Read Mathew 12:26-30, Mark 14:22-26, Luke 22:14-20, John: 6:25-60. All four gospel writers point towards this Truth, Jesus's real presence in the Eucharist. That is not to say that the Spirit is not within us. The Holy Spirit indeed dwells in us, when we are in the state of Grace, which means, when we are in communion with God and free of sin.

lovingthesouth72
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lovingthesouth72 06/13/09 - 09:29 am
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To add to the top comment:

To add to the top comment: God is present as his Son in his Body and Blood in the Eucharist, God is present in the Holy Spirit in our Souls, and God is present as our Father in Heaven. He is present in all, equally, infinitely, and the same time, forever. Father/Son/Holy Spirit, All on same God.

UrbanMeyerHater
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UrbanMeyerHater 06/13/09 - 10:21 am
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Lubi, come on now! that pic

Lubi, come on now! that pic is 20 years old!!!

Son of God
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Son of God 06/13/09 - 10:29 am
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Know ye not that your body is

Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. The church is a meeting place to assemble ourselves together and bear witness. The holy spirit was given to ALL OF US as a GIFT FROM JESUS to comfort us until he returns. God will never leave us or forsake us. God's holy spirit will be with us until the end of the world. We leave God. God doesn't leave us. When we leave God, his grace and mercy kicks in and he just keeps on forgiving us. God forbid if God's grace and mercy runs out and we are not prepared to meet him. We then have to meet satan who we have yeilded our soul to. We do have a choice. God is a spirit and they that worship him MUSTworship him in SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH. THY WORD IS TRUTH. Let God be true and every man be a liar.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 11:33 am
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ML: I'm trying to understand

ML: I'm trying to understand this. I read the scriptures you provide (Matt. must be incorrect, however), but nowhere do I see anything at all that plainly teaches the bread and wine actually become living/dead human tissue. If you want to read it that way, I suppose you could. I can also see how it can be read symbolically or as a memorial too. Same thing happened on the cross. When Jesus looked down on John & Mary, he said they were "mother" and "son". Obviously, he did not mean that he miraculously transformed their DNA into parent/child. It was not a literal thing, but functional rememberance. I have a hard time believing that Catholic priests, via some incantation, can re-crucify Christ every mass/service to reintroduce his actual blood and flesh. Besides, Jesus has a new perfected body now that does not exhibit the typical attributes of flesh and blood as we know it. It seems quite a reach to believe that we're grabbing a piece of Jesus' new perfected body from the right hand of God, and consuming it ourselves. Therefore, I think it far more likely that the eucharist is a symbolic memorial, and not a literal metaphysical / physical transformation.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 11:39 am
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"That is why every Catholic

"That is why every Catholic church has a tabernacle to contain and preserve the real presence of Christ alive." Now this I did not know, and really don't understand. I thought tabernacles were OT foreshadowings that went out when the Holy of Holies was in the temple; then when the veil was ripped, the H of H (i.e., presence of God) was now the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in true believers? How in the world could a tabernacle "contain" the real presence of Christ alive? Are you saying you have the ability to put Christ in a box in your church? Again, Jesus Christ is there in the pews in the people, not in some tent. The PEOPLE are the church, not some mand-made structure. Be it temple, tent, or tabernacle, it's irrelevant. God no longer dwells in a tent, but in the hearts and minds of His children. I'm just really confused by this tabernacle concept.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 12:04 pm
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The greatest commentator on

The greatest commentator on the John 6 passage is Jesus Himself. Don't forget to read the entire passage you gave, and allow Jesus to explain the true meaning to us. He clarifies it for the apostles. In the very same context, Jesus tells us it's not about flesh. He actually says there's nothing good about flesh at all. It's all about the Spirit. According to Jesus, life is in accessing the Spirit of God, not in assimilating flesh. In John 6:63, looks like Jesus tells us that the "bread" He was referring to is actually his words / teachings. That is the "bread" that will provide and sustain life. So, again, I think this idea of having to eat literal flesh and blood is not clearly taught. If you want to assume that is true, then that's your choice. But, I think it is just as accurate and true to the scripture to believe that Jesus is speaking metaphorically about "eating" his blood and flesh, which was not an uncommon Jewish concept when referring to the act of assimilating teachings.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 12:26 pm
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Also, Hebrews clearly tells

Also, Hebrews clearly tells us that Jesus died one time and one time only, and that this single sacrifice effected our forgiveness and restored our relationship to God. Seems to me there is absolutely no need to now obtain the blood of Christ every week. His blood was poured out and the work was was done 2000 years ago. The cross is where we find our forgiveness and restoration. It is not in some religious ritual.
Don't get me wrong: Communion was commanded, and is an important remembrance of Christ's sacrfice. But it in and of itself does not effect our redemption. The cross accomplished that. We come to God in faith and obedience, not ritual.

Taylor B
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Taylor B 06/13/09 - 01:03 pm
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I fed a koala some eucharist

I fed a koala some eucharist one time at the zoo....

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 02:00 pm
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Take a look at Hebrews 10:11.

Take a look at Hebrews 10:11. It describes the continuous action of human priests as they did the daily sacrifices time and time again. They never sat down. Too busy. Jesus, the Great High Priest, however, made the atoning sacrifice ONE TIME, and has now sat down at the right hand of God because the work is done. Looks to me like the time of priests mediating blood sacrifices for people was over a long time ago. No more need for the shedding of blood. Jesus did it once and for all. That settled it. There simply is no need to keep shedding His blood every week. Celebrate salvation already accomplished by the one great High Priest. No more priestly rituals are necessary. Jesus has sat down, and bleeds no more.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/13/09 - 02:21 pm
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Another interesting thought:

Another interesting thought: If you are a Christian, you do not just "receive" the body of Christ. YOU ARE the body of Christ (e.g., Rom 12). No priest gives this to you. You become a child of God via the work of the Holy Spirit in your heart and the work of Jesus on the cross.

Townie
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Townie 06/13/09 - 05:56 pm
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And I thought this area was

And I thought this area was free from anti-Catholism. Apparently not! howcanweknow, you are a perfect example of the ignorant around here. History man! Read it! All!

corgimom
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corgimom 06/13/09 - 06:03 pm
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Howcanyouknow, you need to

Howcanyouknow, you need to read up on your history.That is one of the key differences of Catholics from other religions, and they have every right to believe it.

mable8
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mable8 06/13/09 - 10:07 pm
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I guess you have to be a

I guess you have to be a Catholic if you want to be a believer. Somehow, I don't think Christ meant for everyone to be so divisive over His teachings. Quite frankly, Christ only meant that the bread and wine were symbolic, not a truism. Besides, how does anyone know what Christ REALLY said...it has already been proven that over the course of the centuries that MAN made changes in the Biblical texts...

grouse
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grouse 06/13/09 - 10:44 pm
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Insanity.
Unpublished

Insanity.

kai@reasontostand.org
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kai@reasontostand.org 06/14/09 - 08:20 am
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"Besides, how does anyone

"Besides, how does anyone know what Christ REALLY said...it has already been proven that over the course of the centuries that MAN made changes in the Biblical texts..."

mable8, that's a pretty audacious statement. Would you care to back that up or are you simply repeating an often-used line to try and diffuse a serious discussion?

I think howcanweknow makes some great arguments against the validity of the Eucharist. My favorite argument against the practice, however, is that we were simply told not to practice cannibalism in the OT. Whether the Eucharist is or not actually cannibalism, I find it pretty strange that God would tell us not to have a hint of immorality about us and then command his Jewish followers to do something that was a direct violation of the OT law that, as far as I can tell, was never repealed (we are still not to eat another human today).

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 02:43 pm
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Read up on history? What's

Read up on history? What's that got to do with anything. Look at the Bible and draw your conclusions from there. There's nothing Anti-Catholic here. All that has been done is to examine the facts. If that's anti-catholic, then I'm sorry. But, so be it. I can't change history. I can only report the truth as we have it. I don't see the Catholic position as consistent with scripture. That is the issue, not history.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 02:50 pm
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Have to agree with Kai. There

Have to agree with Kai. There is more solid bibliographic and archeological evidence for the validity of the Bible than any ancient document. For example, the Dead Sea Scrolls (which you can actually look at yourself) prove that there is no significant difference at all from our current Bible and the books included there. We have parchments of original NT Greek texts dated from the first century, and they square very well with our current NT. So, no, there was no tape recorder with Jesus, but the direct evidence supporting the accuracy of Biblical transmission is far greater than ANY OTHER work of ancient literature. There's something very special about the Bible. We know it has not been edited or changed signficantly in almost 2000 years.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 02:56 pm
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Corgi, no one is questioning

Corgi, no one is questioning your right to believe anything. That's your choice. What is being questioned is not history, but doctrinal truth. I noticed that no one has even attempted to address the points I raised. History has nothing to do with it. Personal preference has nothing to do with it. Being "anti-catholic" has nothing to do with it. If you support a church position, which is your right, then the onus falls upon you to defend that belief in light of scripture (and not what a church, priest, rabbi, or preacher says). People say a lot of things, and get people to follow them. That's how cults start. What I'm saying is that if a church claims to be Christian and has as its base the NT teachings, then what it believes must square with what the NT teaches -- the ENTIRE NT, and not just a few selected verses here and there. I raised valid points. I've gotten no responses. That suggests to me that there are no good answers. Therefore, the points raised in the article must be called into question in light of biblical teachings. Not being mean, just trying to be logical and learn the truth.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 03:09 pm
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Don't you find it oddly

Don't you find it oddly consistent that when someone cannot dispute the facts of what you say, they resort to name-calling and insults? Happens in politics all the time. Guess it happens here too. I agree with Mable that Christ never meant for divisions among his people. I was hoping that opening dialogs such as this might help clarify positions and promote better unity. But, I'm told I'm "ignorant" and need to basically stop questioning what Catholics believe. Well, I question what I believe every day. The Bible even teaches we need to test everything and think things through. I prefer to follow that biblical directive. If that contradicts Catholic doctrine, I'm sorry. I'm not a religious lemming. There are far too many man-made cliffs out there to fall off of when one considers what the Bible teaches (and not what someone says it says).

corgimom
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corgimom 06/14/09 - 09:29 pm
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Howcanweknow, I'm not

Howcanweknow, I'm not Catholic. I personally don't care what Catholics believe, as long as they don't force it on me. But I do know that is one of the main differences between Catholics and Protestants, and if Catholics want to believe it, fine by me. Personally, I don't, but that's my belief.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 09:56 pm
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Corgi, your view is typical

Corgi, your view is typical of society today. No real, absolute truth. You believe your truth, and I believe mine. Truth doesn't really matter, as long as our beliefs work for each of us. I say the capital of Ga. is Macon. You say Savannah. As long as our truths work for us, then that's fine. No one should try to force their truth that Atlanta is the real capital. Keep your beliefs to yourself and respect mine. We'll all get along fine that way. Somewhere, somebody needs to stop this insanity and try to discover the real truth of the matter. One of the biggest problems with our nation today is that whatever works for me is my truth. We've forgotten the "historical" fact that only the real truth ever really works. Sad.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/14/09 - 10:25 pm
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You know, if you are secure

You know, if you are secure that your beliefs are accurate and based on fact, then no one can "force" anything on you at all. You'll welcome questions and be happy to discuss the issues.

LynxRHot
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LynxRHot 06/15/09 - 11:33 pm
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I rejoice to know that Christ

I rejoice to know that Christ is my Saviour, and dwells within my heart, whether or not a piece of bread turns to flesh. Partaking of bread does not save one's soul. Acceptance of His gift of forgiveness and repentance of sins leads to a personal relationship with Christ...not a piece of bread or a sip of wine.

LEO
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LEO 06/16/09 - 09:04 am
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I love how people will take

I love how people will take the whole '...God made the world in seven days' statement as literal (not that I'm debunking that), but when Jesus says in the New Testament, '...this IS my body which will be given up for you,' and '...this IS my blood which will be shed for you,' that somehow it was nuanced and open for many other symbolic translations. Just a comment. Unfortunately, there's not enough room in this forum for the Catholic/Protestant debate to adequately take place. We, as Catholic and Protestant Christians should focus on our similarities and fight the good fight against the real forces of evil in this world.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/09 - 11:26 am
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Leo, I agree. Debate can be

Leo, I agree. Debate can be healthy, and should never be destructive. There are many similarities; far more than differences. But, doctrine needs to be based on the entire body of evidence, not just a few selected verses. Yes, Genesis says "days", but the Hebrew words can just as easily be translated "periods of time". Other verses tell us that God spreads out and expands the universe (sounds like a 14 billion-year-old Big Bang to me!). Yes, it is entirely possible that the "IS" could be literal in those few verses. But, if you consider that literal interpretation in light of the remainder of the NT (especially what is said in Romans and Hebrews), it makes that literal interpretation pretty cloudy. In light of the entire big picture of NT teaching, it seems (at least to me) that Jesus must be speaking symbolically about the bread and wine, as he himself indicates to us in John 6. I think we all would agree that the Lord's Supper is there to focus us on Christ's sacrifice and bring us closer to Him. If we keep that idea central, there is far more agreement than disagreement.

Son of God
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Son of God 06/17/09 - 08:45 am
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How can we know you have done

How can we know you have done a good jod of posting your comments. Keep studying to show yourself approved. Rightly dividing the truth from a lie. God will show you the way and guide you. God is never the author of confusion. His ways are not our ways. His thoughts are not our thoughts. High as the Heavens are from the earth so are his ways from our ways and his thoughts from our thoughts. I try to stick close to the King James version as possible. All those other versions are newly created and tend to twist the word somewhat from the originality. May God bless and restore salvation to everyone who posted here.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/17/09 - 08:47 am
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Thank you. As is everyone who

Thank you. As is everyone who follows Him, I continue to be a work in progress. I sure don't have all the answers, but I know Who does.

mhtjlh
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mhtjlh 06/17/09 - 06:19 pm
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As I read the comments posted

As I read the comments posted so far, I see the word "believe" used several times. No one, however, addresses the issue of FAITH. Faith is believing without proof. Jesus told Thomas "You believe because you have seen. Blessed are they who have not seen, yet believe." At the Last Supper, Jesus said "Do this in remembrance of Me." With those words, He gave the first priests, the apostles, the great privilege and honor of doing as He did; sharing the greatest Gift mankind will ever receive - the Gift of His Real Presence to His Mystical Body, the Church(people) on earth. Our Roman Catholic Church believes, with all the graces FAITH bestows, that our consecrated clergy(priests, bishops, cardinals, the Pope) continues the great honor and privilege of enablinig the Transubstantiation at each and every Holy Mass. What a huge blessing for us! Attend a Mass and witness for yourself the deep faith, holy reverence and awe for yourself.

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