St. Mary Catholic Community

The Sacrament of Eucharist

Bishop Robert Barron discusses the Sacrament of the Eucharist as Real Presence in this video?


 Liturgy – “work of the people”  It is a communal act, each of us is a concelebrant.

 Liturgy typically divided into 4 main parts: 

            Gathering Rites

            Liturgy of the Word

            Liturgy of the Eucharist

            Concluding Rites


 I.  Gathering Rite

The gathering symbolizes the call of God into community with one another.  We must be in right relationship with one another.  Gathering is a sign of the kingdom of God.  The Penetential Rite seeks forgiveness for any division.

The gathering symbolizes the presence of Christ.  The gathering is a symbol of justice.  We defend one another because the presence of Christ is in each of us.  The Second Vatican Council spoke of the fourfold presence of Christ in the Mass.  Christ is present in the assembly, in the word, in the ministers, and under the appearance of bread and wine.

1.  Assemble

The procession symbolizes that we follow Christ to the altar so we can offer our lives.  The order of the procession is as follows:

The cross or some symbol of Christ, i.e. the baby Jesus, incense, is first

The Gospel



  1. Entrance Song
  2. The priest bows before the altar, a symbol of God.
  3. Sign of the cross
  4. Greeting: The Lord be with you, Peace be with you
  5. Invitation: Options

Sprinkling – Easter season

Penetential rite – Lent

Confetitor – Lent

Litany of Praise for God’s Mercy

Gloria – except in Advent or Lent

Baptism rites, Passion (Palm Sunday), Liturgy of the Hours, Funeral rites



Liturgy of the Word stems from Jewish synagogue worship where they read from the Torah.  Scripture is meant to be proclaimed, not read.   We carry scripture in with the procession.  Carry the word out in our hearts and lives.  The reader bows to the altar, then proceeds to the podium. 

First Reading

The first reading is from the Old Testament, except during the Easter season when it is from the Acts of the Apostles.  It matches the theme of the Gospel.

Response Psalm – we read from one of the psalms of David

Second Reading

The second reading is from the Epistles.  It is continuous and is not thematically matched with the Gospel.

Alleluia – We sing Alleluia as the Gospel processes to the pulpit except during Lent


The Gospel procession symbolizes the Word of God going out to the people.  The Gospel is carried from the altar to the podium accompanied by candles to symbolize that the Word is Light.  The fanfare originated from the imperial courts.  Ideally the deacon, if there is one, reads the Gospel and the priest gives the homily.  If there is more than one priest, the homilist should not proclaim the Gospel.

Homily -The homily is a reflection on the scripture.  The priest helps apply scripture to our daily life.  It both offers comfort and disturbs the comfort.

Apostles’ or Nicene Creed  

We profess our faith using the creed developed during the Councils of Nicea and Constantinople in 325 and 381.

Prayers of the Faithful - We offer prayers for each other and for the church.


In the liturgy of the Eucharist the presence of Christ is shared in the sacrificial meal.  It is a sharing of life.  A meal shows hospitality.

Our Eucharist has its roots in the Passover meal and the Last Supper.  During the Passover the Jews celebrate the Exodus deliverance of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.  The theme here is liberation and freedom.  Out of love God formed a covenant with them and delivered them.  Jesus celebrated the Passover meal at the Last Supper.  He took the bread and wine from the ritual meal and made it into an expression of his impending death.  Jesus body would be broken and his blood shed for us, for our salvation.  His death delivered us from sin and death. 

Real Presence – We as Catholic Christians believe that the bread and wine is not merely symbolic of Jesus’ body and blood.  We believe that Jesus is truly present in the bread and wine.  Once consecrated it becomes His body and blood.  Most of our Protestant brothers and sisters believe that the Eucharist is a symbol of Christ’s body and blood.

Preparation of the Gifts

We bring gifts of bread, wine and ourselves to the altar as a sacrifice to God.  What is brought to the altar should not be taken back.  The bread is symbolic of our Baptism.  We separate the shaf from the wheat.  We are the wheat.  We enter water (mix the water with the wheat).  We anoint with oil as we put fire to the bread to bake it.  The prayer said prior to the washing of the hands comes from the Book of Daniel and the story of Shadrach, Michak and Abednego are put into a fire because they would not worship the king.  They pray that their lives will be sacrificed for God.  Later there is a fourth person in the fire.  The prayer helps us to live in the Trinity.  This passage in Daniel is followed by a canticle praising God.  The Eucharist helps us to see God in all creation and in each other.

Eucharistic Prayer

There is a choice of nine Eucharistic prayers.  We give thanks to God for sending his son.  We remember our history and pray for the future.  We get a glimpse of heaven, we are all united in Christ, surrounded by God.

1.  Preface

            Priest: the Lord is with you.

            People: And with your spirit

            Priest: Lift up your hearts

            People: We lift them up to the Lord

            Priest: Let us give thanks to the Lord our God

            People: It is right and just

What we give thanks for in the preface changes.

2.  Holy, Holy, Holy

The Holy, Holy comes from Isaiah 6.  It is Isaiah’s image of heaven.  “Holy” means different.

3.  Eucharistic Prayer

Praise to the Father

You are indeed Holy, O Lord,  and all you have created rightly gives you praise, for through  your Son our Lord Jesus Christ, by the power and working of the Holy Spirit, yougive life to all things and make them holy,  and you never cease to gather a people to yourself, so that from the rising of the sun to its setting a pure sacrifice may be offered to your name..

Invocation to the Holy Spirit (Epiclesis)

Therefore, O Lord, we humbly implore you, by the same Spirit graciously make holy these gifts we have brought to you for consecration, that they may become the Body a nd Blood of your Son our Lord Jesus Christ, at whose command we celebrate these mysteries.

In the Epiclesis  we pray for the second coming, we pray that the Holy Spirit come upon these gifts of bread, wine and us.

Narrative of the Institution

For on the night he was betrayed, he himself took bread and, giving  you thanks, he said the blessing, broke the bread, and gave it to his disciples, saying: 

“Take this, all of you, and eat of it: for this is my body which will be given up for you.” 

In a similar way, when supper was ended, he took the chalice, and giving you thanks, he said the blessing, and gave the chalice to his disciples saying:

“Take this, all of you, and drink from it: for this is the chalice of my blood, the blood of the new and eternal covenan which will be poured out for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Do this in memory of me.”

In the Narrative of the Institution we celebrate the sacrifice which Jesus Christ instituted at the Last Supper when he tok the bread and wine and offered them up as his Body and Blood, gave them to his apostles, and told t hem to do the same “in memory of him.”  The Narrative of the Institution begins with Passover and moves to the future.

Memorial Acclamation

     Priest:  The mystery of faith


          1.  We proclaim your Death, O Lord, and profess your resurrection until you come again.

          2.  When we eat this Bread and drink this cup, we proclaim your death, O Lord, until you come again.

          3.  Save us, Savior of the world, for by your Cross and Resurrection you have set us free.

The Memorial Acclamation expresses the Paschal Mystery.   We remember Jesus at the Last Supper and present today.

The Memorial Prayer, (Anamnesis)

Father, calling to mind the death your Son endured for our salvation, his glorious resurrection and ascension into heaven, and ready to greet him when he comes again, we offer you in thanksgiving this holy and living sacrifice.  Look with favor on your Church’s offering, and see the Victim whose death has reconciled us to yourself.

In the Anamnesis, a calling to mind, we call to mind ur Lord’s Death, Resurrection, and Ascension.  We remember the past, look forward to the future at the table with Mary, the saints and all.  We pray for all in heaven, for us all to be united.

Therefore, O Lord, as we celebrate the memorial of the saving passion of your Son, his wondrous Resurrection and Ascension into heaven, and as we look forward to his second coming, we offer you in thanksgiving this holy and living sacrifice.

Invocation of the Holy Spirit

Grant that we, who are nourished by his body and blood, may be filled with his Holy       Spirit, and become one body, one spirit in Christ.

Intercession: In Communion with the Saints

May he make us an offering to so that we may obtain an inheritance with your elect, especially with the most Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of God, with your blessed Apostles and glorious Martyrs and with all the Saints, on whose constant intercession in your presence we rely for unfailing help.

Prayers for the Church

May this sacrifice of our reconciliation, we pray, O Lord, advance the peace and salvation of all the world.  Be pleased to confirm in faith and charity your pilgrim Church on earth, with your servant Francis our Pope and Michael our Bishop, the Order of Bishops, all the clergy, and the entire people you have gained for your own.

Prayers for the Dead

To our departed brothers and sisters and to all who were pleasing to you at their passing from this life, give kind admittance to your kingdom.  There we hope to enjoy forever the fullness of your glory through Christ our Lord, through whom you bestow on the world all that is good.

Concluding Doxology

Through him, and with him, and in him, O God almighty Father,  in the unity of the Holy Spirit, all glory and honor is yours for ever and ever.  Amen.

Great Amen – We cannot be neutral about what God is doing in the world.


The Our Father - We pray for forgiveness.

The Sign of Peace – We offer one another a sign of peace.  “Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift.”   (Matthew 5: 23-24)  We show peace, make peace before we go to the table.  For full unity we must be willing to forgive.

Breaking of the Bread - Commingling of the body and blood is needed for a true sacrifice under the Jewish tradition. 

Lamb of God

The Lamb of God is taken from Scripture.  In Luke 11:28, during the meal Christ shared with the outcasts someone shouts "Rather, blessed are those who hear the word of God and observe it."  And in Revelation 1:3 someone called out “Blessed is the one who reads aloud and blessed are those who listen to this prophetic message and heed what is written in it, for the appointed time is near.”

As the centurian soldier said, we say:  “Lord, I am not worthy to receive you under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”

The term Lamb of God is also used in Exodus.

Communion Antiphon


The rubrics dictate that everyone receive communion together.  The early Christians received Eucharist in their hands.  The Roman Missal rubrics dictate that we should all stand until the last person receives Eucharist as a sign of unity.  However, Christ received Eucharist while reclining at table.  The Bishop of the Diocese of Boise exercised an option under the Roman Missal to sit or kneel after receiving Eucharist.


“misa” – to go

Put Eucharist into action.  Eucharist is a verb, not a noun.