Before you go to Holy Communion next time, read this…

A Eucharistic Meditation from St Justin (d. 165), an early Christian martyr and saint:

”There is then brought to the president of the brethren bread and a cup of wine mixed with water; and he taking them, gives praise and glory to the Father of the universe, through the name of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and offers thanks at considerable length for our being counted worthy to receive these things at His hands. And when he has concluded the prayers and thanksgivings, all the people present express their assent by saying Amen. This word Amen answers in the Hebrew language to genoito [so be it]. And when the president has given thanks, and all the people have expressed their assent, those who are called by us deacons give to each of those present to partake of the bread and wine mixed with water over which the thanksgiving was pronounced, and to those who are absent they carry away a portion. 
And this food is called among us Euxaristia, of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that the things which we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins, and unto regeneration, and who is so living as Christ has enjoined. For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Saviour, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh. 
For the apostles, in the memoirs composed by them, which are called Gospels, have thus delivered unto us what was enjoined upon them; that Jesus took bread, and when He had given thanks, said, “This do ye in remembrance of Me, this is My body;” and that, after the same manner, having taken the cup and given thanks, He said, “This is My blood;“ and gave it to them alone.

First Apology 65-66

Father Z: “Reflect on what these people believed… the faith in which they believed fuel like a fusion reactor by the faith by which they believed.

They were willing to die [for their Faith].”

CP&S comment: Have we become any wiser or grown more pious in our devotion for our Eucharistic Lord after almost two thousand years from the times of those early Christians? They went willingly to go to their death rather then renounce even one iota of their Faith. May their testimony be a leading star for us to follow, and to awaken in our sluggish hearts a revival of that same heroic courage and love of Christ and His Holy Words.

*****

UPDATE

From a comment on Father Z’s blog:

“It is clear that our liturgy is timeless through this saint’s writings. Justin Martyr (probably more correct to say Justin the Martyr) stands as one who was faithful to the end. With the predominance in most catholic circles of effeminate, clownish men in the hierarchy it is no wonder that we are in the situation we are in today in the Church. Unclear encyclicals, wrong-headed edicts, and watered down liturgy have led the Church to the precipice of the pit. While Christ told us that Hell would not prevail, many in the Church today are trying their best to prove Him wrong (and we know where that will end!). 

Would that we all take St. Justin’s words to heart!”

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3 Responses to Before you go to Holy Communion next time, read this…

  1. Pingback: Before you go to Holy Communion next time, read this… – Zero Lift-Off

  2. kathleen says:

    What struck me most about that quote on receiving Holy Communion coming from such an early Christian martyr were these words: “… of which no one is allowed to partake but the man who believes that the things which we teach are true, and who has been washed with the washing that is for the remission of sins”.

    Nowadays it seems that everyone joins the queue to receive Holy Communion at Novus Ordo Masses. Are all those people in a state of grace? Let’s hope so. But considering the fact that the Sacrament of Confession is often hard to come by in most parishes today (certainly in mine that is the case, unfortunately), and even when it is available before Mass, or at specific times, not many appear to make use of it…. then one could ask oneself that question.

    St Paul’s hard-hitting words about receiving the Body and Blood of Our Lord “unworthily” (that St Justin surely knew and had in mind here in this quote) should shake us all up a little.

    Like

  3. Mary Salmond says:

    Kathkeen: I love that quote too. I copied it for future reference.

    Like

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