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Praise and CelebrateThe EucharistThe Eucharist (the word means “thanks- giving” in Greek) is the heart and summit of the Church’s life. In the Eucharist, Christ:• Associates his Church and all her members with his sacri ce of praise and thanksgiving o ered once for all on the Cross to his Father• Pours out the graces of salvation on the members of the ChurchThe Eucharistic celebration, which is also called the sacri ce of the Mass, is one single act of worship that includes:• The proclamation of the Word of God• Thanksgiving to God the Father for all his blessings, above all the gift of the Son• The Consecration of bread and wine• Reception of the Lord’s Body and BloodThe Eucharist is the memorial of Christ’s work of salvation accomplished by his life, Death, Resurrection, and Ascension. This work is made present by liturgical action. Only validly ordained priests can consecrate the bread and the wine so that they become the Body and Blood of Christ.The essential signs of the Eucharist include:• •Wheat bread and grape wine, on which the blessing of the Holy Spirit isinvokedThe words of consecration spoken by Jesus on the night before he died: “For this is my Body which will be given up for you.... For this is the chalice of myBlood...”The transubstantiation, a unique kind of change, of bread and wine into theBody and Blood of Jesus is brought about by thewords of consecration and the action of theHoly Spirit. Christ himself—his Body and Blood, his soul anddivinity—becomes present under theappearance of bread and wine.The Church o ers the Eucharist in reparation for thesins of the living and the dead to obtain spiritual or temporal(worldly) bene ts from God. Anyone who wants to receive the Eucharist must be in the state of grace. Those in mortal sin must receive absolution in the Sacrament of Reconciliation or Penance before receiving the Eucharist.23ICRCI/ercierMenPhotocredit:Corin

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