The Bread of Heaven and the Blood of the Covenant

The Eucharist has always stood at the center of the life and worship of the Christian Church.  The sacrifice of the Eucharist is the preeminent act of Christian worship, the central focus of Christian life, and the constituent element of the church as community.  Sacrifices are meals, meals shared together by the community with the community’s God.  Several past posts have focused on the sacrificial nature of the Eucharist and its nature as a meal.  There is also much to be said about the elements themselves, the food which constitutes this meal.  Beginning by at least the seventh century and especially in the West, there has been considerable discussion and debate as to how the body, blood, and indeed the…