Eucharistic Prayer Checklist

On a whim I asked myself, “what are the explicit statements in the liturgy concerning what Holy Communion is?”  The list proved quite long as I read through the prayers, so I thought I’d share it with no commentary.  By the way, these are listed in order of their mentioning in the course of the liturgy and prayers, so there’s been no attempt by me to organize or rank them here.

In the 1979 Exhortation to Holy Communion, the Eucharist is described as…

  • A sign and pledge of God’s love for us
  • A continual remembrance of the sacrifice of Christ’s death
  • For a spiritual sharing in Christ’s risen life
  • A mystery in which we are made one with Christ and Christ with us
  • A mystery in which we are made one body in him and members of one another
  • Something Jesus commanded for us to do
  • An act of thanksgiving for God’s creation, providence, love, and redemption
  • Nourishment and spiritual food
  • Beneficial for us if we receive with penitent hearts and living faith
  • Dangerous for us if we receive improperly, not recognizing the Lord’s Body
  • A sacrifice of praise, which is our bounden duty and service

In the course of our liturgy (1979 BCP, Rite I), we affirm that the Holy Eucharist is…

  • A comfort to us regarding God’s forgiveness of our sins
  • A perpetual memory commanded by Christ of his death and sacrifice until his return
  • A celebration of the memorial of Christ
  • An offering we make to God the Father
  • A means by which “innumerable benefits” are procured unto us
  • Bread and wine blessed and sanctified by God’s Word and Holy Spirit
  • A means by which we become partakers of Christ’s blessed Body and Blood
  • A sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving
  • A request for the remission of sins and all other benefits of Christ’s passion
  • An offering of ourselves as “a reasonable, holy, and living sacrifice” unto God
  • A filling of God’s grace and heavenly blessing
  • A making of us into one body with Christ, that he may dwell in us and we in him
  • Something we are unworthy to offer because of our sin
  • Our bounden duty and service
  • Done through Jesus Christ our Lord
  • Offered on the Lord’s Table
  • Approachable only through God’s mercy, not our own righteousness
  • The flesh and blood of Jesus Christ
  • Christ’s body which makes our bodies clean
  • Christ’s precious blood which washes our souls
  • A gift of God for the people of God
  • To be taken in remembrance that Christ died for us
  • To be fed upon in our hearts by faith, with thanksgiving
  • The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world
  • The Body of our Lord Jesus Christ which was given for us
  • The Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ which was shed for us
  • For preserving our body and soul unto everlasting life
  • The bread of heaven and the cup of salvation
  • A holy mystery
  • The spiritual food of the most precious Body and Blood of Jesus Christ
  • An assurance of God’s favor and goodness toward us
  • An assurance that we are true members incorporated into the mystical body of Christ
  • An assurance that we are heirs of Christ’s everlasting kingdom

About Fr. Brench

I'm an Anglican Priest and a sci-fi geek. Therefore, I write about liturgy & spiritual formation, theology & biblical studies, and Doctor Who. But I keep those blogs separate so I don't confuse too many people!
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