The Catholic faith considers the Eucharist one of the holy sacraments. Catholics perform the Eucharist in memory of Christ's Last Supper with his disciples. The Eucharist begins when your child enters confession, just prior to the Eucharist ritual. You can explain this process to your children and teach them how they can participate in the Eucharist sacrament by explaining each step and showing them what they can expect. The Eucharist can be an intimidating ritual, but your children can feel more comfortable if they understand what to expect.
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Explain the importance of giving confession before the Eucharist. Read 1 Corinthians 11:27-28: "Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup." Explain to your child that giving confession is how she can purify herself in preparation for the Eucharist. Remind your child that she should always give confession before taking the Eucharist and after all mortal sins.
Explain the process of transubstantiation: the idea that faith transforms the bread into Christ's body and the wine into Christ's blood. Read Mark 14:22-24, an account of the Last Supper in which Christ refers to the bread and wine as his body and blood. Explain that this is why your child must respect the sanctity of the Eucharist, because he is interacting with Jesus.
Instruct your child to avoid all food or drink, except water and medicine, for the hour preceding the Eucharist ritual. Explain that this is the Eucharist fast and part of the purification that she undergoes prior to the sacrament. If she asks, explain that exceptions exist to this fast requirement, such as the need to take medicine or for people with physical conditions that make the fast impossible.
Describe the process of taking the Eucharist to your child. Explain that the priest will invite everyone to the front of the church in the order that your church uses, such as inviting people one row at a time or inviting everyone at the same time in smaller churches. Remind him to keep his mind focused on Jesus while he walks to the front of the church. Explain that he should take his place on a kneeler and take the Eucharist by raising his hands, right hand under left, toward the priest or by opening his mouth. Remind your child to say a prayer after receiving the Eucharist, before standing and leaving with the others.
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