A Dialog on the Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament

> My question with regard to the debate about "physical" 
> presence would be -- How can the Body and Blood of Jesus 
> be really present under the accidents of bread and wine
> without Jesus being _physically_  present? If Jesus is 
> not physically present, then what is physically  present? 
> Do we just see accidents with no physical content? It
> doesn't make sense to me. 

Can we always SEE physical? Consider the wind - it's physically present yet we cannot see it. More confusing yet is the question, is GOD physically present on earth? Is physical to be limited to man or man's works? We say God is a 'spiritual being' because He does not have a body like us but is there such a clearcut line between physical and spiritual? Is God the Creator of the Universe not physically present right here with us this very moment as we read email?

You see, we are moving in areas which the most intelligent men have not really been able to understand. And more than trying to understand it, perhaps we should ask if it's possible to understand it.

I am reminded of the reference to another mystery, the Holy Trinity. St Augustine is walking along the beach, an anecdote tells us, with a student who is trying to fathom the mystery. Both men see a child taking a cup, filling it with water from the ocean and pouring it into a hole he dug in the sand. The child told the men he was trying to pour the ocean into his sandhole. Augustine turned to the student and said that our trying to understand the Holy Trinity was like the child trying to bring the ocean into that small hole.

Do we have to understand everything perfectly to make use of it? And if we rejected everything that we do not understand, how limited would be our lives. We would not be able to take medications, drive a car or use a computer because most of us have little understanding of the works of those things.

The only light I can shed on this mystery of Jesus' total Presence in the Eucharist is that it's different from God's other presences in our world because Jesus is all man and all God and therefore, His Body and Blood is physical at the same time that it is Divine.

I looked this up in several reference books and basically, Catholics approach this mystery and embrace it in belief by realizing that when Jesus told us about the Eucharest, He MEANT it to mean LITERALLY HIS TOTAL PRESENCE, physically. We can easily glean this by reading carefully John 6 where the men understood Jesus to be speaking literally and when He did not assure them that it was 'only a symbol', most of them which the Bible calls 'disciples' i.e. followers and not casual strangers, walked away and 'followed Him no more' the Bible tells us.

> I'm open to persuasion. Like many of the faithful, I
> feel  confused. 

There is no question according to the Bible and 2000 years of Catholic theology, that Jesus IS present, totally, including Bodily and physically in the Eucharist. Therefore, if we do believe Jesus was Whom He claimed to be i.e. the Son of God, we can feel confident that somehow, in someway, He manages to be fully and totally present, Physically and other, in the Holy Eucharist.

But here is something else to think about - suppose by some miracle God could infuse into my tiny human brain, a scientific explanation of how this is possible - would anyone be able to understand it? If Albert Einstein stands before us and explains relativity, how many of us would be able to understand more than a vague idea of Einstein's theories? And this is only earthly science - when we are talking about the 'how' of the Eucharist, we are talking God's realm. Remember how large God is (fills the Heavens and the Earth) and how small we are. How much about the complexities of a human being could a grain of sand on the beach understand?

If you are open to persuasion of belief in this, the best One to persuade you is God - you will not be persuaded by a conversation online. Take your Rosary and pray daily. Open your soul to God and He will fill it. His Eucharist is the ultimate Gift, His Ultimate Act of Love. You will end up understanding and believing.

So many faithful become confused with the noise of the world because they have forgotten to listen to the Silence of God.

Sue Widemark