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Pope Francis asks: are we living the Eucharist well?

CWN - February 12, 2014

Continuing his series of Wednesday general audiences devoted to the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and the Holy Eucharist, Pope Francis asked whether those who attend Mass are “living the Eucharist well.”

Pope Francis asked first whether we are aware that others attending Mass are truly our brothers and sisters and that Mass should lead us to pray for and assist the poor and marginalized. “The Eucharist brings us together with others – young and old, poor and affluent, neighbors and visitors,” he said. “The Eucharist calls us to see all of them as our brothers and sisters, and to see in them the face of Christ.”

Second, Pope Francis asked whether we recognize we are sinners. “We celebrate the Eucharist not because we are worthy, but because we recognize our need for God’s mercy, incarnate in Jesus Christ,” he said. “In the Eucharist, we renew the gift of the Body and Blood of Christ for the remission of sins, and our hearts are enlarged to receive and show mercy.”

Finally, emphasizing that the Eucharist is not our action but the action of Christ, Pope Francis said that Christ encounters us at Mass.

“It is from the Eucharist that the Church receives continually her identity and mission,” he said. “It is in our celebration that Christ fills us with his grace, so that our lives may be consonant with our worship of God in the liturgy. Let us live the Eucharist in a spirit of faith and prayer, with the certainty that the Lord will bring to fulfillment all that he has promised.”

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