'KNEEL'
A Eucharistic Healing

September 2003By Michael Forrest

Michael Forrest is a Catholic apologist and works with Priests for Life. He is also a composer and musician, and plays with his brother Sean Forrest in a contemporary Christian band (for information on the band, go to seanforrest.com).

Este artículo: en español

The following is my personal account of a day I will remember for the rest of my life. It occurred in the late spring of 1996. I have endeavored to be as plainly factual and objective as possible, while also conveying my subjective reactions at the time and in retrospect. While no one is obliged to believe what I am about to recount, I would only ask that one keep an open mind.

During my conversion from Baptist Protestantism to Catholicism, I underwent many challenges, and welcomed most of them. However, one difficulty I faced was particularly troublesome. In the process of my initial catechesis, I had not been sufficiently instructed in the Sacraments. As a result, I suffered unnecessarily in trying to comprehend these profound mysteries.

As a Baptist, I had been taught that the Lord’s Supper (what Catholics call Holy Communion) was strictly symbolic. I was referred to Christ’s words: “Do this in remembrance of me” (Lk. 22:19). I was assured that this scriptural passage was proof that the purpose of the Lord’s Supper was only to remember what Christ had done for us on Calvary. This was my belief for almost 30 years. And as an analytical/rational sort, it certainly made sense. Why would anyone believe differently? The first time I heard that Catholics believe that the Eucharist is Christ’s body, blood, soul, and divinity, I thought it was absolutely bizarre and idolatrous.

We should all frankly admit that this is very unusual and hard to accept. A quick reference back to John 6 will prove that the truth of the Eucharist has been hard to accept from the very beginning. Christ said, “Amen, Amen I tell you. Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him” (Jn. 6:53-56). And afterwards, all of the people applauded and said, “Yes, of course! Brilliant! We believe, we believe!” Right?

Wrong. This is what happened: “Then many of his disciples who were listening said, ‘This saying is hard; who can accept it?’” To which Jesus replied, “Does this shock you? What if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before?” In essence, I believe He was trying to get them to accept His difficult teaching on the Eucharist by telling them that they would see other astounding, miraculous things that they could neither explain nor deny (and, in fact, Jesus had already performed miracles). As such, He was asking them to suspend their intellectual disbelief in humble recognition that man is not always able to explain everything that God does or asks of us.


You have two options:

  1. Online subscription: Subscribe now to New Oxford Review for access to all web content at newoxfordreview.org AND the monthly print edition for as low as $38 per year.
  2. Single article purchase: Purchase this article for $1.95, for viewing and printing for 48 hours.

If you're already a subscriber log-in here.



Back to September 2003 Issue

Read our posting policy Add a comment
Imagination: Language ,music and the arts communicate emotions and concepts derived from the senses,as such,are imitations of nature. No mental copy,however ,can arise in the Mind ,of any kind of sensation which has never been directly excited from without.
" The stream of thought flows on; but most of it's segments fall into the bottomless abyss of oblivion.Of some ,no memory survives the instant of their passage. Of others, it is confined to a few moments,hours,or days.Others ,again leave vestiges which are indestructible ,and by means of which they may be recalled as long as life endures" ( William James, pscychology ,XVI)
Posted by: laguerre12
June 28, 2012 11:52 AM EDT
One of the natural laws of man : Intellectual laws of Man.Reason is given to direct the functions of all the other special powers of the mind, and to bring them into harmony; without being guided by reason,every faculty is lable to errors. Reasons acts according to determinate principles,but it does not furnish the objects on which it operates,hence it will err each time when the premises or objects of it's activity are not truly furnished.
The faculties of man are: ( Desire of Life,Desire of Meat and Drink,Sense of Destroying, Sense of Amativeness,Sense of Parental Love,or Love of Offspring, Sense of Attachment,Sense of Habitation,Sense of Courage,Sense of Secrecy, Sense of Acquiring or Collecting, Sense of Constructing,Sense of Cautiousness,Sense of Approbation and Notoriety,Sense of Self - esteem, Sense of Benevolence,Sense of Reverence, Sense of Firmness and Perseverance, Sense of Conscientiousness,Sense of Hope, Sense of Marvellousness,Sense of Ideal and Perfect, Sense of Mirth and Humor, Sense of Imitation) " Natural laws of man 1875"
Genesis 2:3 " And God blessed the seventh day ,and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made" ( translation history : Wicliff-1380,Tyndale -1534, Cranmer -1539, Geneva -1557, Rheims-1582,Authorized version of the Bible - 1611)
I will also quote George Eliot , Middlemarch,vII,70 " Early in the morning- about six- Mr. B...rose and spent sone time in prayer .Does any one suppose that private prayer is necessarily goes of the roots of action ?Private prayer is inaudible speech,and speech,is representative : who can represent himself just as he is ,even in his own reflections?
The Catholic Catechism of the Catholic Church on The Sacrament of the Eucharist # 1322-1420. I will quote # 1377 " The Eucharist presence of Christ at the moment of the consecration and endures as long as the Eucharist species subsist.Christ is present whole and entire in each of the species and whole and entire in each of their parts, in such a way that the breaking of the bread does not divide Christ"
The truth of Aesthetic experience can be grasped only by the Intellectual faculties- sight,hearing,and thinking and not by the lower senses.
Posted by: laguerre12
June 28, 2012 11:24 AM EDT
The object of the intellect is Truth and Justice: " It is the Torah and Torah alone that puts flesh and bones on the spectral figure of " Jesus the Jew No Halakic jesus ,no historical Jesus. The historical Jesus is the Halakic Jesus " His name is Jesus Ben Sira ( Sirach) . The anchor Yale Bible reference Library volume 4 ( A marginal Jew ) John P. Meier
Jesus Ben Sirah Birth ca 250 / historical context: Ptolemy II Philadelphus and Jexus Ben Sira death : ca 175 / historical context Ptolemy v Epiphanes 203-181
The Greek translation of WIdom of Ben Sira in Egypt after 117.( The anchor Bible : The wisdom of Ben Sira( Patrick Skehan and Alexander A. Di Lella)
The book of Sirach/ Ecclesisticus/ The Wisdom of Ben Sira is Jesus Ben Sira
The New Oxford Annotated Bible has a listed in the section heading of : The Apocryphal/ Deuterocaconical Books



Posted by: laguerre12
June 28, 2012 02:36 PM EDT
Add a comment