Chapter Ten: The Body of Christ

In this chapter we are looking at the words the priest says as he distributes the host and the chalice – “The Body of Christ” and “The Blood of Christ” and how Christ is present in the bread and the wine. Talk about the transformation that takes place, during the Consecration of the bread and wine at Mass.

Link this to Easter and the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, to bring new life – and how he gives himself to us, his disciples today, under the appearance of bread and wine. We think about how Christ is present in the bread and wine.

Keywords in this chapter are: Consecration, Body of Christ, Blessed Sacrament, Tabernacle, Sanctuary Light, Good Friday, Easter Sunday (see the chapters 9 and 10 keywords sheet)

Remember to do the online quiz (one for each chapter) – reading through the chapter and completing the quiz are the two things that must be completed, everything else is optional and there to support you if required.

Some questions to ask

Most of these are open ended and should be used to help your child explore these ideas/their feelings:

Q. What happened on Good Friday and Easter Sunday?
A. Good Friday is the day that Jesus dies on the cross. Easter Sunday is the day that Jesus rose again from the dead.

Q. Who does Jesus appear to after he has risen from the dead?
A. Mary from Magdala and the two friends on their way to Emmaus.

Q. What happens at the Consecration during Mass?
A. The Priest says the words spoken by Jesus and lifts the host. The chalice and the bread and wine are changed into the body and blood of Jesus.

Q. What should we say when we receive Holy Communion?
A. Amen

Q. Why might we recognise Jesus when we hear the words he said, spoken by the priest, at Mass and when we receive Holy Communion?
A. Your child may be able to make a link here with the friends going to Emmaus, who recognised him in the sharing of a meal with Jesus. Or they may link to the Last Supper, as the words of the priest echoes the words said by Jesus asking us to do this to remember him.

Q. Why might we try to be quiet after receiving communion and what might we want to say to Jesus?
A. Answers could include that we might try and be quiet to take in that special moment. We might also want to give space for God to speak in our hearts in the silence. A quiet moment can also help us feel peaceful. We might want to thank Jesus for giving us his life.

The Readings

New Testament Readings:

Mary meeting the Risen Jesus and the Disciples on the Road to Emmaus – These two stories have been chosen to illustrate the fact that Jesus looked different because of his resurrection (continuing our theme in this chapter of changes in outer or inner appearances). Death no longer has any effect on Jesus’ body. The fact that he is only recognised by the disciples going to Emmaus at the breaking of bread is significant.

NB Believing is not the same as having all the answers! Belief requires faith, which allows for mystery and wonder to be a part of our relationship with God.

Colouring Page

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Children receiving Holy Communion
Children receiving Holy Communion

Suggested Activities

  • Talk about the day they will make their First Holy Communion, who will be there and how special the day will be.
  • Ask your child to spot the part of the Mass where the Consecration takes place.Practise saying the Children’s Prayer, which is inside the front cover of their book, they will be saying this on the day.
  • Talk about how they will take the host and the wine. Reassure them they will get chance to practise before the big day.