Let us reflect for a moment on the gift of the Eucharist as we celebrate its institution nearly 2000 years ago. The Vatican Documents teach us that the Eucharist is the source and summit of our lives as Catholics. As such, the Eucharist ought to be the wellspring from which we draw the strength to live our daily Christian lives and it is the end to which we direct all our actions as it is the celebration of our salvation!

There is no mystery more profound than that of the Eucharist as meal where we eat Christ’s Body and drink His Blood. How can this be the case? It is part of the mystery of God’s gracious provision for the lives and strength of His people. Through the mystery of transubstantiation what seems to be bread and wine takes on the reality or essence of the Body and Blood of Christ! We cannot explain this scientifically, but in faith we believe it and partake of it. The sacrifice of Jesus on the cross is made present to us in a sacramental form and we are able to enter into the mystery of our salvation in a way that is so profound that very few, if any of us really understand its significance!

The challenge we face today is not so much the challenge to be able to explain this mystery but our willingness to surrender our lives to it! Here lies the essence of holiness, surrender to the grace of God and His power to transform us into His own image and likeness. When I read the lives of the saints I rarely wonder at the intellectual profundity of their writings; I am far more in awe of their willingness to let their faith and trust in God do the talking and living in their lives. What I mean by this is that the grace of surrender to God in and through faith is far more important and profound reality than the ability to be able to explain the same in words. In fact, I doubt the latter is even possible to the extent that such an explanation will fully capture the reality of what we mean by our faith response to God.

Do I struggle fruitlessly to try and understand the things of faith that are really only understandable through the submission of my mind and heart to my faith?

Lord Jesus, give me the grace to let go of the need to understand and a greater willingness to surrender to the gift of faith.