June 25, 2012 St Francis Prayer Group
V: O God, come to my assistance.
R: Lord, make haste to help me
Precious Lord, Take My Hand 702
Litany of the Holy Name of Jesus page 113 Treasures Holy & Mystical
O Sacrament Most Holy 325
Eucharist Continued: More about the meal aspect
(from Bread of Life Cup of Salvation, John Baldovin, SJ)
(disclaimer: one must always read the NT in light of the OT; consider that Christianity and Judaism are “siblings”, not parent-child; it is possible to claim Christianity as the older religion since Rabbinic Judaism did not come about until 70AD, BUT we must remember and re-affirm Jesus’ Judaism)
*Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, 47 (pg. 12)
*What does the NT tell us about how to celebrate the Eucharist?
No detailed rules;
, 1 Cor 11-12 assumes they already know how. St Paul
*Eating and drinking in the ancient world:
-food and with whom you share it was very important
-Ritual Purity (ritual impurity = inability to offer sacrifice at the
): touch, Temple
under same roof, eat meal
-Scarcity of Food: particularly meat – usually only shared after sacrifice; “we
need to remember that Jesus’ teaching and actions took place in a world of
poverty where a banquet would be truly extravagant because people were hungry
most of the time.” (18) and there was little separation btwn religious and social, so
feasts would inevitably have a religious character.
-Jewish meals were framed by formal blessings: (1)recognize how God blesses
people/things (“the Lord bless you and keep you….”; (2)God is blessed for
something, to “bless God” – we adapt this notion: “Blessed are you, Lord God of
all creation….”. Pious Jews blessed God continually, morning, noon & night.
“…nothing seems to be accessible to men and women unless God is blessed for it.
There is a profound spirituality here and it lies at the basis of the Mass: things are
good and holy for us only when we put them in the proper perspective – when we
recognize God as their source.” (19)
*Formal Jewish meals were framed by blessings: first cup of wine – for bread broken and shared and the second cup of wine at the end of meal (cup of blessing), this most likely being the major blessing. (berakah – to bless). “One cannot understand our Eucharistic prayers without recognizing that they have their origins in Jewish formulas of blessing and prayers of thanksgiving for favors that God has granted.” (19)
Take a look at the Last Supper narratives:
Matthew 26:26-29 (Palestinian tradition)
Mark 14: 22-25, Luke 22:15-20; 1Cor 11:23-26 (Antiochene tradition)
*was it a Passover meal? (the evening of the first full moon of the first spring month of the year) – discrepancy among the Gospels: Mt, Mk, Lk all place the meal on the evening after the Passover lambs are slaughtered, but in John Jesus dies at the same time as the slaughter of the lambs – still debated! So it took place at the time of /atmosphere of the Passover: “For Christ, our paschal lamb, has been sacrificed.” (1Cor 5:7)
*Pray the Novena Sacramentum Caritatis, pg 14 Treasures Holy & Mystical (start Tuesday to end on July 4)