What material food produces in our bodily life, Holy Communion wonderfully achieves in our spiritual life. Communion with the flesh of the risen Christ, a flesh “given life and giving life through the Holy Spirit,” preserves, increases, and renews the life of grace received at Baptism. This growth in Christian life needs the nourishment of Eucharistic Communion, the bread for our pilgrimage until the moment of death, when it will be given to us as viaticum. (CCC 1392)
In his encyclical, Ecclesia de Eucharistia, Pope John Paul II observed:
When for the first time Jesus spoke of this food, his listeners were astonished and bewildered, which forced the Master to emphasize the objective truth of his words: “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life within you” (Jn 6:53). This is no metaphorical food: “My flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed” (Jn 6:55).
Sadly, many Catholics have abandoned the practice of going to Mass and receiving Holy Communion. By doing so, they deprive themselves of the spiritual nutrition that is needed for eternal life. If you know of any such individuals, please pray for them and share with them the importance of receiving Our Lord’s Body and Blood. If you are one of them, please consider this as an invitation to join in the banquet!