Becoming Eucharist for others

This blog post was 1st posted by Sister Therese Ann Rich Aug., 16, 2009

Don and Annie were “empty nesters” as far as their children were concerned.

However, for 12 years Annie’s mother had lived with them. At first, she was a great help, but as the years rolled by, age was not kind to her and she began to diminish in energy and enthusiasm. Then she was diagnosed with a terminal illness. She had only a short time to live and wanted to die in familiar surroundings. Annie and Don agreed to round the clock care and continued their loving.

Their heartaches were many – the pain, the constant demands, family obligations, work obligations. However, the biggest heartache was expressed by Annie when she shared with me her longing for Eucharist. She had not been to Mass for so long because she didn’t want to leave her mother nor did she have the energy to get to Mass. Little did this overburdened daughter know that Eucharistic acts are as common as bread and wine, as common as the self-sacrificing love we freely give to others.

In the Gospel today, Jesus’ self-giving is made present in the Eucharist. Our eating this bread and drinking of this cup draws us into the mystery of self-giving. And in sharing in this bread and drinking of this cup, we become Eucharist for others.

Annie and Don became Eucharist for their family.