For My Flesh is true food, and My Blood is true drink. Whoever eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood remains in Me and I in him. John 6:55
This week I received a phone call from my Parish Church secretary telling me that starting May 1st I would once again be able to serve as an Extraordinary Eucharistic Minister. I last served about a year ago; prior to the pandemic. There were several months last year without public Mass. Once the church doors opened to the public, there were a very limited number of Eucharistic Ministers and only His Body was distributed. Still, it was a joyous occasion to once again be apart of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass and partake of Christ’s Body.
I know that the Host I consume is all of Christ, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity; however, I find myself longing to also drink from His Spiritual Cup. A meal consist of food and drink. Christ asked His disciples to break bread and drink wine in memory of Him. It greatly saddens me that the Blood of Christ seems to be an afterthought, practically discarded as unnecessary and of less importance.
The times I have served as a Minister of the Eucharist, I have favored giving the Body of Christ. Most of the mass attendees receive the Host lovingly and respectfully, bowing before their Lord before stepping up to receive Him. This is not the case with our Lord’s Blood.
A few years ago, I was waiting to get in the communion line when my eyes settled on my Christ in the Chalice being held by an Extraordinary Eucharistic Minister. My mind and heart were greatly troubled as I saw several people after receiving the Holy Host, bypass the Chalice without so much as a glance His way or a bow. After mass, I was relaying this to my husband, who was driving. I was adamant that Jesus was being dishonored and disrespected by the people not recognizing Him in His Chalice. My husband disagreed. He calmly told me that I was overreacting, (which I sometimes do). He reminded me that the Body of Christ contains all of Jesus as he added, “I see nothing wrong with people…” Suddenly he stopped speaking as the truck he was driving jerked as if my husband jammed his breaks! Just as fast as we were jolted to a stop, the truck again returned to a normal speed. All of this occurred without my husband’s foot ever leaving the gas pedal! Without missing a beat, my husband continued speaking, “…And I think you are absolutely right!”
I have heard people say that they do not drink from the Chalice because of the possibility of catching other people’s germs or sicknesses. I find it hard to believe that the vessel that holds my Lord could be contaminated. Just as Mary was made pure to hold Jesus in her womb, I believe any object that contains the Body and Blood of Christ must also be made pure and immaculate by the Holy Spirit.
I am very much looking forward to May and once again being able to give Christ to people. I also look forward to the day that I can also partake of Him in my Spiritual Drink. When that day comes, it is a choice whether or not to receive His Blood along with His Body. I ask that if one chooses to not receive the Chalice; they remember to be reverent while walking by. It is not wine that you are passing up, it is Jesus Christ Himself.
Then He took the bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is My Body, which will be given up for your; do this in memory of Me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup is the new convenant in My Blood, which will be shed for you.” Luke 22:19-20