Source and summit of our faith

by Father Maurice Moon

North Texas Catholic

Father Maurice Moon during the Liturgy of the EucharistFather Maurice Moon during the Liturgy of the Eucharist
Father Maurice Moon during the Liturgy of the Eucharist. (NTC/Juan Guajardo)

The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith (Catechism of the Catholic Church 1324). Why? Because the Eucharist is none other than Jesus Christ. Thus, everything we do in our faith should lead us, and others, to the Eucharist, to union with God. “Is not the cup of thanksgiving for which we give thanks a participation in the blood of Christ? And is not the bread that we break a participation in the body of Christ?” (1 Cor 10:16). 

For centuries, Catholics have had a tendency to forsake the source and summit of their faith, much like Solomon forsaking the Lord and following strange gods (1 Kings 11:8). It is a temptation we all have: Could that really be God in that tiny host? For 2,000 years, numerous martyrs have given their lives for this belief; men and women have written thousands of theological tomes in defense of this belief; poets and musicians and artists have composed and created some of the most beautiful masterpieces in honor of this belief. These things should encourage us to believe, “Yes, that is the true presence of Christ, the source and summit of our faith.” 

What are some practical things we can do to make the Eucharist the source and summit of our daily life? First, if you can go to daily Mass, go! “Taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8). What could be more important, more salutary, in our lives than uniting our souls to Almighty God in Holy Communion? You will be surprised with all the blessings God will bestow upon you for making time for Him each day, offering Him perfect praise. God may not have angels plow your fields as He did for St. Isidore in reward for going to daily Mass, but in how many other ways may He repay your piety!

Next, prepare your soul for Holy Communion. St. Augustine says, “If you expected a visit from a great person, to whom certain objects in your house would be offensive, would you not remove them before his arrival?” Are we not welcoming a great person under our roof when we receive Holy Communion? So, we should do all we can to remove those objects in our lives that are offensive to this great person, Jesus Christ, by repenting of our sins and going to confession often.  

Third, spend as much time as you can speaking to Jesus after Mass. It was a great horror for St. Charles Borromeo to see one of his priests rush out of the church after celebrating Mass one day and begin talking about worldly things. So the saint sent two altar boys with torches to stand next to the priest to remind him that he was a walking tabernacle right after Holy Communion. Why are we so rushed to leave Church after receiving Holy Communion? St. Teresa of Avila says there is no greater time to accumulate spiritual treasures than just after Holy Communion. St. Aloysius Gonzaga spent his short life in a continual preparation and thanksgiving for Holy Communion. What a beautiful practice to mimic!

I have been a priest now for about a year and it has been my greatest joy to celebrate holy Mass and give people the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, the source and summit of our faith. I have seen this sacrament be strength for the weak, consolation for the sorrowful, health to the sick, food for the journey for the dying, a source of fire for works of charity, a preserver of peace. I pray that a renewed love and devotion to the Holy Eucharist, the source and summit of our faith, floods the heart of every Catholic in the Diocese of Fort Worth, leading them to union with God in this life and for eternity in the next.

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Father Maurice Moon

Ordained to the priesthood in 2018, Father Maurice Moon serves as chaplain at Nolan Catholic High School in Fort Worth and as Vocations Liaison.

Father Moon during the Liturgy of the Eucharist

The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith. Why? Because the Eucharist is none other than Jesus Christ.