From what I’ve heard at Masses in the couple of years or so, priests at least in my area have been focusing a lot in their homilies on the importance of the Eucharist, and the fact that it is not merely symbolic but truly the body and blood of Jesus.
My question is why does the Church place so much emphasis on this belief? I understand that the concept of sacraments is crucial to Catholicism, but the way I see it the most important aspect of sacraments seems to be the grace they bestow. Why is it so important that we receive Jesus’ actual body?
Probably the most satisfying answer I received was from my father, who basically said that it is the most intimate form of communion…which I guess makes sense, but I still don’t get why it’s such an integral doctrine.
If anyone has any reading material to suggest on the topic that might help me understand the Catholic view on this better, they would be appreciated.