Sunday, October 10, 2010

A short primer on means and ends...

So, I've been hearing some disturbing thoughts on the Eucharist, so I'm going to do the only thing I know how.

Quote: "I use the tools of the faith, like the Rosary, and the Eucharist."(emphasis added)

I'm just going to assume that this meant the prayers of the Mass, and the beautiful vessels, monstrances and tabernacle with which we reverence Him.  Still, without that clarification, there can be confusion, which I don't like very much, and seek to eliminate where I can.

The error that can be gained through lack of explanation is found blatantly in the soundbites from the students who were denied Eucharist by Archbishop Nienstedt; "We were making a statement during the eucharist ... how else to do it than in liturgy?"  As if the liturgy, the very act of receiving Our Lord were a perfectly appropriate place to convey their unorthodoxy and stubborn disobedience.  Reception of Our Lord is now a medium... a tool.

There are two types of things in reality - means and ends.  

Some things may be both a means and an end, for example, the hammer is the end of your expedition to Lowes, but the hammer is in turn a means to hanging the painting your wife made to display how proud you are of her.  

Some things are only ever ends.  They can draw you to them, but they are in fact always an end, never a means.  Namely, people.  A person should never, ever, ever ever be used as a means, for it is the nature of a person to be an end, a recipient.  You love a person, not for what they can do for you, but because they are.

Jesus Christ, Word of God, Second Person of the Trinity, Incarnated Son of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, True God from True God, is a person.  He is THE Person, in many ways, as in his humanity, he showed us what it means to be human.  He showed us what He meant our humanity to be.

He is our end.  He is our goal.  He is our destination, our hope, our home, our reward.  He draws us to him, but he is never a means, for he is The Omega.  In giving us Himself to us to bring us to Him, He has first given Himself to us, putting us in the presence of our End!!!

The Eucharist is not a tool of the faith, or a place to make a statement, it is the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  The danger of these statements and actions is that they hide, and can altogether deny the True Presence.  Are we then surprised when 45% of Catholics don't know about the True Presence in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar?

Let us pray for a return to a true devotion to the Eucharist and His Holy Presence. 

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