Regarding the U.S. bishops upcoming document on the Eucharist, Progressivist Jesuit Thomas Reese proffers some telling theological suggestions:
Reese: “… the document should not use the word “transubstantiation,” which is a theological concept based on Aristotelian philosophy, not the Scriptures. I believe that the bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ, but I do not believe in the Aristotelian metaphysics of prime matter, substantial forms, substance and accidents.
“Transubstantiation was a nice way of explaining the Eucharist to Aristotelians, but it makes absolutely no sense to people in the 21st century. Better to admit that the transformation is a mystery beyond our comprehension. If a person can say “Amen” when the minister says, “The body of Christ,” they should be able to receive the Eucharist.
“Third, the document should emphasize that the purpose of the Eucharist is not to bring Christ down on the altar so that we can worship him. If you want to worship Jesus, go to Benediction. The Eucharist is about worshipping the Father, not Jesus. Jesus never asked his disciples to worship him. His message was all about the Father, not himself.
“The ultimate purpose of the Eucharist is not to change the bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ but to transform those at the Eucharist into the body of Christ so that they can continue his mission in the world…”
Source: Religious News Service. Six suggestions for the Catholic bishops’ document on the Eucharist.
Msgr Thomas J. Reese, SJ (born 1945) is a Catholic Jesuit priest, author, and journalist. He is a senior analyst at Religion News Service, a former columnist at National Catholic Reporter, and a former editor-in-chief of the weekly Catholic magazine America.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
1413 By the consecration the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is brought about. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real, and substantial manner: his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity (cf. Council of Trent: DS 1640; 1651).