Holy Eucharist

CommunionHoly Communion is the receiving of Jesus Christ in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist.

  • Just as it is necessary to nourish our bodies with material food, so also it is necessary to nourish our souls with spiritual food. Our Divine Savior so loved us that He gave us Himself in the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist; the Lord Jesus gave us His own body and blood as food for our souls.
  • It is not necessary that we receive Our Lord’s Body and Blood in the Sacred Host and the Precious Blood. Christ is entirely present when we receive the Host and is also entirely present when we receive from the Chalice. Therefore, we receive Christ, our crucified and risen Lord under the Host alone or the Chalice alone.
  • In the Eastern Catholic Churches the faithful typically receive both the Host and Chalice when their receive Holy Communion. In the Western Church the faithful receive the Host at Holy Communion and may receive the Precious Blood.
  • To receive Holy Communion worthily it is necessary to be free from mortal sin, to have a right intention and to obey the Church’s laws on the fast required before Holy Communion out of reverence for the body and blood of Our Divine Lord.
  • Venial sin does not make us unworthy of receiving Holy Communion; but it does prevent us from receiving the more abundant graces and blessings which we would otherwise receive from Holy Communion.
  • One who desires to receive Holy Communion is to fast from food and drink (except for water) for one hour before receiving Holy Communion. This may be reduced to 15 minutes for those who are sick.
  • On Sundays and holy days of obligation we are obligated to attend Mass. This obligation is satisfied by attending a Mass which is celebrated anywhere in a Catholic rite either on the Sunday or holy day or on the evening of the preceding day.
  • Some fruits of Holy Communion are: first, a closer union with Our Lord and a more fervent love of God and of our neighbor; second, an increase of sanctifying grace; third, preservation from mortal sin the and remission of venial sin; fourth, the lessening of our inclinations to sin and the help to practice good works.
  • The sacrifice of the Cross and the sacrifice of the Mass are one single sacrifice. The victim is one and the same; the same now offers through the ministry of priests, who then offered Himself on the cross; only the manner of offering is different. In this divine sacrifice which is celebrated in the Mass, the same Christ who offered Himself once in a bloody manner on the altar of the cross is contained and is offered in an unbloody manner.

For more information on First Holy Communion – please click on Religious Education