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Eucharist is 'extreme giving of thanks,' Pope tells general audience

February 05, 2014

The Mass is not just a way of remembering Christ’s sacrifice, Pope Francis reminded his weekly public audience on February 6; it is a sharing in “the mystery of Christ’s passion, death, and resurrection.”

“The Eucharist is the peak of the action of God’s salvation,” the Pope said. He said that at the Last Supper, “all Jesus’ words, all the signs he had made, were condensed into the gesture of breaking bread and offering the chalice in anticipation of the sacrifice of the Cross.” Thus the Eucharist is “the extreme giving of thanks to the Father for His love and for His mercy.”

The Pope asked the faithful to pray that the devotion to the Eucharist would “keep its presence alive within the Church, and model our communities in charity and communion, in accordance with the heart of the Father.”

As he concluded his general audience, the Pope expressed his sympathies for the residents of Italy’s Tuscany and Latium regions, who are suffering from flooding after heavy rains. He assured the people of those areas that the Church would remember them in their prayers.

The Pope also asked the crowed in St. Peter’s Square to pray for the sick, including those who were unable to attend the audience because of the cold rain. Many sick or elderly people who had hoped to attend the audience had been directed to the Paul VI auditorium for shelter, and the Pontiff visited them there before his own general audience—which they were able to follow on a video screen.


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