The Eucharist, the living and real presence of Jesus Christ, completes Christian initiation. Through this sacrament of initiation we participate with the whole community of believers in the Lord’s own sacrifice.
The Eucharist (from the Greek word eucharistia 'thanksgiving') is the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ in which he is present under the forms of bread and wine offering himself in the sacrifice of the Mass and giving himself as spiritual food to the faithful.
At the Last Supper, the Lord instituted the eucharistic sacrifice of his body and blood. He did this in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again, and so to entrust to the church a memorial of his death and resurrection.
The Eucharist is the source and summit of the Christian life. As Catholics, we fully participate in the celebration of the Eucharist when we receive Holy Communion. We are encouraged to receive Communion devoutly and frequently. In order to be properly disposed to receive Communion, participants should not be conscious of grave sin and normally should have fasted for one hour.
A person who is conscious of grave sin is not to receive the body and blood of Christ without prior sacramental confession, except for a grave reason where there is no opportunity for confession. In this case, the person is to be mindful of the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition, including the intention of confessing as soon as possible (Code of Canon Law, Canon 916). A frequent reception of the sacrament of reconciliation is encouraged for all.
Religious Education Requirements for First Holy Communion:
- Children receive their First Holy Communion during their second grade year after fulfilling all the necessary requirements. Children must have been baptized to receive the Sacrament of Penance.
- A two-year preparation program is required before the reception of the sacraments of First Penance and First Holy Communion. Attendance at a Catholic school for at least two years prior to receiving the sacraments or, if not enrolled in a Catholic school, attendance for at least two years prior to the sacrament at weekly parish school of religion, CCD classes. First Holy Communion is celebrated in 2nd grade. The preparation program begins in 1st and 2nd grades.
- At this time, Our Lady of the Rosary Parish does not have enough young people to support our own CCD program. Therefore, we recommend that parents contact one of our neighboring parishes (St. Dominic Parish, St. Pius X, and/or St. Anthony of Padua).