A serious concern in the Church is that a majority of Catholics do not believe communion involves receiving the actual body and blood of Christ. Apparently, these Catholics are unaware of the miracles that prove transubstantiation.
A 2019 Pew study showed that 69% of all self-identified Catholics said they believed the bread and wine are symbolic only and are not converted into the actual body and blood of Christ. Fortunately, about 62% of those who regularly attend Mass believe, but that’s still far from 100%.
So why be Catholic if you don’t believe in the Eucharist? What’s the point of Mass if you don’t think the Consecration transforms the hosts and wine into the body and blood of Jesus? Believing in the Eucharist is central to our faith. It’s essential.
Fixing this terrible problem will require serious educational efforts. Thankfully, the bishops have made this re-education a top priority for the next few years.
The bishops’ plan ought to include the proof provided by Eucharistic miracles. They are overwhelmingly convincing.
Perhaps the most famous miracle occurred in recent history. It is also one of the most compelling because of all the scientific testing that is now available.
In 1996, at a parish in Buenos Aires, Argentina, a host that had fallen on the floor was placed in the tabernacle to soak in water until it dissolved. This is the appropriate process, but instead of dissolving, the host turned into human tissue.
Then Cardinal Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, ordered laboratory testing from experts who were not told of the tissue’s origin. The results showed the tissue to be muscle from a live human heart that had undergone tremendous suffering.
Everything revealed about the tissue matches what we know of Jesus’ crucifixion and death. The blood type is AB, which, by the by, is the same as that found on the Shroud of Turin.
A similar miracle occurred in Tixtla, Mexico, in 2006. Once again, laboratory testing showed heart muscle and AB blood type, with various chemicals and cells in the blood that are human. There was no possibility of outside tampering.
International Exhibition of The Eucharistic Miracles of the World
A database of Eucharistic miracles was compiled by Servant of God Carlo Acutis, an Italian teenager who died in 2006 at age 15 from cancer. (For information on this saint-in-waiting, go to carloacutis.com)
On Carlo’s personal web site and at http://www.miracolieucaristici.org/en/liste/list.html is a description of an exhibition that he created and designed.
The International Exhibition of The Eucharistic Miracles of the World consists of 126 Vatican-approved Eucharistic miracles beautifully illustrated and described on 140 panels.
Many of the miracles tell stories about how the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament stopped lava flows, tsunamis, and other natural disasters. Further miracles involve apparitions, bleeding hosts and boiling blood. Some of the evidence has been preserved for hundreds of years.
For personal viewing, there is a virtual exhibition at http://www.miracolieucaristici.org/galleria/en/galleria.html[Also at carloacutis.com are similar databases with stories and illustrations about Marian apparitions; reports about Hell, Purgatory and Heaven from the apparitions of mystics; and stories and illustrations about the apparitions of angels and demons.]
Sharing the Eucharistic Miracles
Parishes can request permission to download the images from the Eucharistic Miracles exhibition for use in a presentation. Currently, the exhibition, which is available in multiple languages, is being shown on five continents.
The miracles are listed by country. Also included are A) stories of miraculous communions; B) saints and mystics who have had miraculous Eucharistic experiences; and C) explanations of the connection between the Eucharist and the Blessed Mother.
The stories are all fascinating and persuasive. I truly hope the exhibit will make its way into every parish. Further, all Catholics should join in a campaign to share the link to the virtual exhibit on social media.
Considering the American scrutiny of the controversy about whether to give communion to pro-abortion politicians, now is the perfect time to enlighten the public about transubstantiation.
Something good comes out of everything bad. The errant behavior of some prominent Catholics provides a prime opportunity to evangelize about the Eucharist. Let’s seize this teachable moment!