The Eucharist and Mary
Fr. S. P. Visuwasam, S.C.
If we want to have an
experience of Jesus in the Eucharist, just go to Holy Mother
Mary. We can learn many things from her life-experience. In word
and deed she displayed sincerity of heart. That is why God had
chosen her to be the Mother of Jesus.
Let me give an example from Mary’s life. I personally admire her
because of her sincerity and her self-surrender to God. She
accepted the plan of God as it came. She had her own doubts and
hesitation at the beginning when the Angel Gabriel approached
her for her help; but then she sought to clarify God’s will
saying to the angel, "I am a virgin. How, then, can this be?”
Many people might ask, “How is Mary the woman of the Eucharist?
She was not present at the Last Supper when Jesus instituted the
Eucharist. Well, even before the celebration of the first
Eucharist, Mary was the living-tabernacle of Christ as she
brought forth Jesus into this world. The Greek word “Eucharist”
means “thanksgiving.” Mary had an extremely grateful heart for
the blessings and graces she had received from God. In Mary’s
prayer of praise known as the Magnificat, Mary said, “My heart
praises the Lord.” (Luke 1: 46f). A person who is generous and
grateful always finds meaning in the Eucharist and draws
inspiration from the same.
Our Blessed Mother stood at the foot of the cross, witnessing
the ultimate Eucharistic Offering of her Son on Mount Calvary.
Mary greatly treasured every moment the life of her Son Jesus.
In the New Testament we come across her last few words: “Do
whatever he tells you.” (John 2:5). This makes her a person of
faith and a person for others. Every Eucharistic celebration is
a treasure and a source of inspiration. Likewise, Mother Mary is
a model of faith in our Christian life.
When we live the values of Jesus in our lives, we gradually
become more like Christ. When we closely admire Mother Mary, we
will realize that the qualities found in Mary are the values
Jesus stood for. Obedience to the will of God, humility,
fidelity, love, etc. easily made her cooperate with the plan of
God. Our visit to the Blessed Sacrament should lead us to be
more humble, more loving, more other-oriented, more sensitive to
the needs of others, more forgiving, more gentle, and, above
all, more human lest we waste our time in front of the Blessed
... Mary said, “My heart praises the Lord.” A person who is
generous and grateful always finds meaning in the Eucharist and
draws inspiration from the same.
(From Pope John Paul II’s apostolic letter, Mane nobiscum Domine,
The “breaking of bread” – as the Eucharist was called in
earliest times – has always been at the centre of the Church’s
life. Through it Christ makes present within time the mystery of
his death and resurrection. In it he is received in person as
the “living bread come down from heaven” (Jn 6:51), and with him
we receive the pledge of eternal life and a foretaste of the
eternal banquet of the heavenly Jerusalem.
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