Wednesday, October 26, 2011

"Whether the Eucharist is a sacrament?"

                                                        "St. Jerome's Last Communion," Botticelli

According to a recent survey, many Catholics have forgotten (or never knew) basic doctrine regarding the Eucharist.   To fill this gap in doctrinal education, we will consult St. Thomas Aquinas's Summa Theologica, which he composed "for the instruction of beginners," and transmit the Angelic Doctor's wisdom regarding the Eucharist in a continuing series of short posts.

To the quaestio above, St. Thomas answers:

"The Church's sacraments are ordained for helping man in the spiritual life. But the spiritual life is analogous to the corporeal, since corporeal things bear a resemblance to spiritual. Now it is clear that just as generation is required for corporeal life, since thereby man receives life; and growth, whereby man is brought to maturity: so likewise food is required for the preservation of life. Consequently, just as for the spiritual life there had to be Baptism, which is spiritual generation; and Confirmation, which is spiritual growth: so there needed to be the sacrament of the Eucharist, which is spiritual food"

St. Thomas Aquinas, pray for us.

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