Friday, September 2, 2011

The Eucharist

The Eucharist is a Catholic ritual. "From the Greek eucharistein, 'to give thanks,' the Eucharist was a thanksgiving ritual of bread and wine." (Chidester, p. 68). It commemorates the Last Supper, taking it's cue from the Scripture passages 1 Cor 11:23-25: "For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes." Themes thus are of remembrance and also affirmation of accepting the new covenant. The ritual is rich with meaning and its complexities don't stop short of these few themes here touched upon. It is as dramatic though as it is complex, as is clear, and drama loves art.

Source: David Chidester. Christianity. A Global History. Penguin Books Limited. Great Britain, 2000.

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