The Eucharist means thanksgiving. It comes from a Greek. The Eucharist have other titles, He is the Bread of Life, which Jesus said in John 6, “I am the Bread of Life.”
This is not merely symbolic my friend. We Catholics firmly believe the REAL PRESENCE of Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament.
Jesus is truly present, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia the Eucharist is:
(Gr. eucharistia, thanksgiving).
The name given to the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar in its twofold aspect of sacrament and Sacrifice of Mass, and in which Jesus Christ is truly present under the bread and wine. Other titles are used, such as “Lord’s Supper” (Coena Domini), “Table of the Lord” (Mensa Domini), the “Lord’s Body” (Corpus Domini), and the “Holy of Holies” (Sanctissimum), to which may be added the following expressions, and somewhat altered from their primitive meaning: “Agape” (Love-Feast), “Eulogia” (Blessing), “Breaking of Bread”, “Synaxis” (Assembly), etc.; but the ancient title “Eucharistia” appearing in writers as early as Ignatius, Justin, and Irenæus, has taken precedence in the technical terminology of the Church and her theologians. The expression “Blessed Sacrament of the Altar”, introduced by Augustine, is at the present day almost entirely restricted to catechetical and popular treatises. This extensive nomenclature, describing the great mystery from such different points of view, is in itself sufficient proof of the central position the Eucharist has occupied from the earliest ages, both in the Divine worship and services of the Church and in the life of faith and devotion which animates her members.
The Church honors the Eucharist as one of her most exalted mysteries, since for sublimity and incomprehensibility it yields in nothing to the allied mysteries of the Trinity and Incarnation. These three mysteries constitute a wonderful triad, which causes the essential characteristic of Christianity, as a religion of mysteries far transcending the capabilities of reason, to shine forth in all its brilliance and splendor, and elevates Catholicism, the most faithful guardian and keeper of our Christian heritage, far above all pagan and non-Christian religions.
The Catholic Church acknowledge this base on Scripture and Tradition that Jesus is present.
The Gospel is PREACHED with words and BELIEVED to be saved.
The Gospel is more than preaching. It involves believing in all the teachings of Jesus Christ, living the faith, and persevere to the end.
The Eucharist is for Christians only. The Gospel is for the world.
I love the Eucharist, but we must not confuse terms and purposes.
The Eucharist is for everyone. Jesus preached that we must eat his flesh and drink his blood.
John Chapter 6 verse 51-55:
51 I am the** living bread which came down from heaven**. 52 If any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever; and the bread that I will give, is my flesh, for the life of the world. 53 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying: How can this man give us his flesh to eat? 54 Then Jesus said to them: Amen, amen I say unto you: Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you. 55 He** that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath everlasting life:** and I will raise him up in the last day.
Jesus instruct the Apostles to do this in remembrance of me. So we have received the Lord.
If you didn’t know the name Bethlehem in Hebrew means “the House of Bread.”
We know Jesus was born in Bethlehem because not only he is from the House of David, but Jesus is the Manna that came down from heaven.