2014 - Triduum : Synopsis

The synopsis of the sermons on the Eucharist preached by Fr. Aniceto Pereira in preparation for the parish feast during the 3 day Triduum.

Triduum on the Holy Eucharist

The celebration of the Holy Eucharist is a very profound sacramental ritual that leads Christians to imbibe a unique spirituality; we can draw out this significance of the Eucharist if only we look at the three Tables in the Eucharist: Table of the word, the Table of the Bread and the Table of life.  

As Christians we could be having different ways in which we read the Bible as individuals. But the Table of the word, at every Eucharistic celebration, teaches us a unique way of engaging in reading the Bible: it is the dynamic of “lectio divina” – “sacred reading”. This dynamic comprises four movements:
Reading in assembly: Christians assemble in order to listen to a reading from the Bible selected by the Church for specific seasons and days.
Prayer : The community that has listened to God’s word responds in prayer to the treasured message.
Meditation : God’s word is considered profound, requiring study and explanation.
Contemplation: God’s word needs to be dwelt on and chewed, in order to facilitate assimilation.

The dynamic of the table of the bread enables Christians to participate in the sacrifice of Christ. The participants need to focus on the gifts of bread and wine and contemplate the transformation that takes place of these gifts into the Body and Blood of Christ. 
We need to ensure that we make an attempt to spiritually place ourselves into the bread and wine being prepared by the Priest on the altar (highlighting these two gifts, rather than carrying many offerings to the altar is a good way of doing this; we think of Cain and Abel). During the Consecration, the Priest then calls down the Holy Spirit upon the bread and wine and says the words of consecration on them; he then shows the people the Body and Blood for them to witness this transformation). As the people continue to kneel, during the Doxology, with the Body and Blood raised, the Priest reminds us that this mystery is the work of the Holy Trinity. Lastly, the Priest will raise the Body and Blood and remind us that this is the “Lamb of God” being given to us in order that we may be strengthened by his grace, and transformed.

The two tables of the Eucharist prepare us indeed for the table of our daily life, with all its challenges. Every Eucharist emboldens us to face our life, but the celebration of a Eucharistic Congress (like the one in Bombay in 1964), forces us to see that the power of the Eucharist is indeed driving us to a deeper engagement in transforming life. Just as we may giant strides in 1964 using the occasion of the Congress by reflecting on contemporary issues of that time in the light of the Gospel, we are called today to admit that the two tables of the word and the bread invite us to search for the meaning of the various crisis situations we face today in the light of God’s word, and to experience the courage to tackle them which comes from the table of the Eucharist.

Fr. Aniceto PEREIRA
Basilica of O. L. of the Mount
Mount Mary,
Bandra (West) MUMBAI 400 050 
Tel: 022-26423152