The Richness of the Eucharist

Ronald Rolheiser
August 16, 2021
Reproduced with Permission

What is the Eucharist? What is supposed to happen when we gather to celebrate the ritual that Jesus gave us at the Last Supper and asked us to perpetuate until his return? Is this meant to be a family meal or a re-enactment of Jesus' sacrificial death? Is it meant to look like the old Latin mass or like it looks in most churches today?

There are no simple answers to these questions because there is no one theology (to the exclusion of all others) of the Eucharist, even in the New Testament. Rather there are various theologies of the Eucharist, complementary to be sure, but each emphasizing different aspects of a reality that is too rich to capture in a single concept. What is the Eucharist?

In essence, the Eucharist is a reality with these interpenetrating dimensions.