The Sunday celebration of the Eucharist, also called the Mass, is the central act of worship for Catholics. In it, we fulfill the command of the Lord Jesus at the Last Supper when he took bread and wine, blessed them and said, “Take and eat, this is my body; take and drink, this is my blood. Do this in memory of Me.”
In the Bread of Life discourse of John’s Gospel, Jesus said, “I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh … Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you.” (John 6:51-53)
The Eucharist is the heart and the summit of the Church’s life, for in it Christ associates His Church and all her members with His sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving offered once for all on the cross to his Father; by this sacrifice He pours out the graces of salvation on His Body, which is the Church. (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1407)
There is no surer pledge or dearer sign of this great hope in the new heavens and new earth “in which righteousness dwells” than the Eucharist. Every time this mystery is celebrated, “the work of our redemption is carried on” and we “break the one bread that provides the medicine of immortality, the antidote for death, and the food that makes us live for ever in Jesus Christ.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1405)
If you are new to the Catholic faith, these resources may help to get more acquainted with Mass:
First Communion takes place during second grade after an extensive period of instruction, and is held on Mother’s Day weekend. St Ambrose uses the Signs of Grace program in its Religious Education for First Communion.
In addition to the weekly classes, there are parent meetings that are required for First Communion and a Saturday retreat for second grade students.
More information on receiving First Communion plus the necessary forms are on the Religious Education page.