The Council of Trent summarizes the Catholic faith by declaring: Because Christ our Redeemer said that it was truly his body that he was offering under the species of bread, it has always been the conviction of the Church of God, and this holy Council now declares again, that by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the body of Christ our Lord and of the whole substance of the wine into the substance of his blood. This change the holy Catholic Church has fittingly and properly called transubstantiation. (Page 384, 385)
(1413) By the consecration the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is brought about. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real and substantial manner: his Body and his Blood, with his soul and his divinity (cf. Council of Trent: DS 1640; 1651). (Page 395)
(1374) The mode of Christs presence under the Eucharistic species is unique. It raises the Eucharist above all the sacraments as the perfection of the spiritual life and the end to which all sacraments tend. In the most blessed sacrament of the Eucharist the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ and, therefore, the whole Christ is truly, REALLY, and SUBSTANTIALLY CONTAINED. This presence is called real--by which is not intended to exclude the other types of presence as if they could not be real too, but because it is presence in the fullest sense: that is to say, it is a substantial presence by which Christ, God and man, makes himself wholly and entirely present. (Page 383, 384)
To be saved one must receive Jesus Christ as their personal savior.
However, one must be very careful to define their terminology. Receiving Christ does not mean eating a wafer. It simply means accepting Christ, and believing, trusting in His finished work on the cross. The doctrine of transubstantiation actually teaches nothing more than cannibalism. This is certainly an abominable practice. No child of God, giving serious thought to their actions, would ever consider cannibalism. The Lords Supper dealt with symbolism. The breaking of the bread symbolizes the body of Christ, which was beaten, bruised, and broken for you. The wine, unfirmented fruit of the vine, symbolizes the blood that he shed for you.
By taking the Lords Supper one should understand what these symbolize, and reflect with adoration and worship in what Jesus did for us. He suffered such a shameful death in our place. He did not do it that men could make a mockery of his death by defiling the Lords Supper.
See comments on catechism #1084, and #1131.
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Copyright © 1996 Robert T. Weaver