“As this broken bread, once dispersed over the hills, was brought together and became one loaf, so may thy Church be brought together from the ends of the earth into thy kingdom.”— The Didache
At the Last Supper Jesus offers a special prayer for his disciples. Turning to his heavenly Father, Jesus says, “I pray not only for them, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you” (Jn 17:20–21). One grace of the Eucharist is union. Just as the many heads of grain are gathered and baked into bread, so the countless faithful are united in Christ in the Eucharist. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says, “By this sacrament we unite ourselves to Christ, who makes us sharers in his Body and Blood to form a single body” (No. 1331). That’s what we mean when we call this sacrament holy Communion. The Eucharist is the sacrament of union.
LET US PRAY
Lord Jesus, may we be fashioned into one body by partaking of the Eucharist. May each holy Communion we worthily receive bind us more completely to our brothers and sisters in Christ. Amen.
PRAYER TO THE EUCHARIST
O God, who in this wonderful Sacrament have left us a memorial of your Passion, grant us, we pray, so to revere the sacred mysteries of your Body and Blood that we may always experience in ourselves the fruits of your redemption. Who live and reign with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit, God, for ever and ever.
-Collect for the Feast of Corpus Christi, composed by St. Thomas Aquinas