Introductory Dialogue to the Eucharistic Prayer
The Lord be with you.
And with you spirit.
Lift up your hearts.
We lift them up to the Lord.
Let us give thanks to the Lord, our God.
It is right to give him thanks and praise.
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One of the tricky things about being a Catholic Christian sometimes is sometimes I take things for granted. I find it can be easy to go into “robot mode” when praying the Rosary or saying the responses at Mass because “I know these words so well.”
These words today are from the Eucharistic Prayer and we hear them every Sunday at Mass. I will be the first to admit sometimes I am not truly aware of what I am saying to God when I say the words. Why is it right to “give Him thanks and praise?” It is very simple, because Jesus is God and we are not. We thank God not because He needs it but because thanksgiving changes the disposition of our hearts. We lift up our heart to Him because of how it changes us from the inside out. When we realize all is pure gift from the Lord, we look at life differently.
The word “Eucharist” comes from the Greek word eukharistia which means thanksgiving or gratitude. Did you catch it too? The Eucharist is the ultimate thanksgiving, the par excellence, the cherry on top of the hot fudge sundae. When we receive the body, blood, soul, and divinity of Jesus we share in the ultimate, most perfect act of thanksgiving. When the priest pours the drop of water into the wine, we put our worries, family members, jobs, marriages, children, and fears into that same chalice. In that way, we participate in offering our own act of thanksgiving to God. We offer our lives, all we have to Jesus.
When you go to Mass on Sunday, close your eyes when you come to the Eucharistic prayer. Listen deeply to what the priest is saying to God and wholeheartedly respond.
Let Us Pray
Jesus, help us not to take You for granted, especially in the Mass. Help us to be fully aware of the words we pray at Mass. The word Eucharist literally translates to thanksgiving, may we always be thankful for the beautiful gift of the Eucharist. Amen.
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Patty Breen is midwestern gal from the Mitten state who finds joy in running, Ignatian spirituality, and reading lots of books. She’s a fulltime youth minister whose learning how to find grace in all things. She is passionate about ministry to divorced Catholics and those battling sexual addiction. You can find out more about her here.