ECCE AGNUS DEI (Behold the Lamb of God)
By Larry Peterson*
The following is for all people, the faithful and non-believers, including atheists, agnostics, nones, and secularists. If you do not believe, you can make a choice and try to see with the eyes of a FAITH that is, for the next few moments, open to you. Or you can just not bother. You know, choices.
Something deeply mystical happens during the Catholic Mass that even many Catholics do not understand. The Mass commemorates the night when Jesus instituted the Holy Eucharist giving us His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity forever. He did this within the framework of what we call the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
We must have the Mass to have the Eucharist. They are inseparable for it is within the Mass that the ordained Catholic priest can consecrate simple bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ. Make no mistake, my friends, this is not a “remembrance” or a “memorial” or a “tribute.” It is the unbloody sacrifice of the Cross being offered again and again and again to God the Father for all of us, for all time, in perpetuity.
Our Catholic faith teaches us that Christ is TRULY PRESENT on the altar at Mass. These words are from the Roman canon: “we, your servants and your holy people, offer to your glorious majesty from the gifts that you have given us, this pure victim, this holy victim, this spotless victim, the holy bread of eternal life and the Chalice of everlasting salvation”. Christ is with us and we, the people, are offering Him to God the Father. Our reward is the Risen Christ given back to us in The Eucharist by our Father in heaven. This is The Mystery of Faith and this is what we believe. I know this is what I believe.
The meaning of this is beyond the pale. It transcends human comprehension. For this is when yesterday became today and tomorrow becomes yesterday. The Mass enables us to briefly step into eternity and to take a peek at the life within the Holy Trinity and the love being shared inside it. This Holy Sacrifice is being offered somewhere on planet Earth every day of the year round the clock. Imagine that, somewhere, every day, round the clock. It is the most beautiful thing this side of heaven. (Even during the pandemic, priests are offering Mass every day, all around the world—even though the laity is not in attendance).
I wrote this many years ago and I would like to share it with you.
By Larry Peterson
Every minute somewhere, Upon this Earth, Amid chaos and pain
Shadowed by greed and pride, Perfection.
While within so many, Silent screams resonate, And fade unheard,
Pain unanswered, Yet each minute, A constant Light, Always there for us to share,
Perfection unbridled,That tells us why, And will let us understand If we choose to see,
This splendid Oblation, A perfect purity, This gift called The Mass
Ignored by many yet, Somewhere each minute, For us to share,
The Answer there, The PERFECT LOVE
The focus of life’s journey is preparation for our transition to and participation in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. When our Easter morning arrives and we sing out, “Alleluia, Alleluia! Christ has died, Christ has risen, Christ will come again,” that is what will happen. Eternal life with the Risen Christ becomes ours. All we have to do is follow Him. If you do not know how or where to start, The Answer you are looking for is right here, in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Copyright©Larry Peterson 2020 (revised from 2015)
*About the writer:
Larry Peterson, a former reinforcing Iron-Worker from NYC, is a Catholic/Christian blogger and posts commentary weekly. His work has appeared in such publications as Aleteia, Zenit from Rome, New Evangelists, Top Catholic Blogs, Big Pulpit, Catholic365.com, and others.
His first children’s picture book, “Slippery Willie’s Stupid, Ugly Shoes” was published in 2011. In 2012, his full-length novel, “The Priest and the Peaches” was released. His second novel, “The Demons of Abadon,” was released in the spring of 2016
Larry’s latest novel, “Horizon Homeless,” was released in ebook format in May of 2017, and the paperback followed on July 27, 2017.
Larry belongs to the Catholic Writer’s Guild, The Catholic Writer’s Society, The Knights of Columbus, and the St. Vincent de Paul Society. He has been an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion for over twenty years bringing communion to the homebound and hospitalized.
You can find more at https://cradlingcatholic.com/