Jesus instituted the Holy Eucharist at the Passover meal the day before He died.

(Lk 22:14-20)

'At the Last supper, on the night he was betrayed, our Saviour instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood.  This he did in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again, and so to entrust to his beloved Spouse, the Church, a memorial of his death and resurrection: a sacrament of love, a sign of unity, a bond of charity, a Paschal banquet 'in which Christ is consumed, the mind is filled with grace, and a pledge of future glory is given to us.'  (CCC 1323)  The Holy Eucharist is the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus Christ.  At Mass, when the people of God are gathered to praise and worship God, and to be fed by the Word of God, they are also fed by Christ himself in the Eucharist.

"This is my body…this is my blood" - the substance of bread is changed into the Body and Blood of Jesus and the substance of wine is changed into the Body and Blood of Jesus.  This is why Catholics fast one hour before receiving Communion and if they are not in a State of Grace, they go to Confession before receiving Holy Communion.  Another way that we show our respect and belief in the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist is by genuflecting or bowing reverently as we enter the Church.

When Catholics receive Holy Communion, they spend some time in a prayer of thanksgiving to Jesus for coming to their souls.  This is a very special time.

Jesus promised, "I will be with you always until the end of time" on Ascension Day (Mt 28:23).  Now His promise is fulfilled in the Holy Eucharist.  We may make a visit to Jesus at any time because He is always present in the tabernacle.

The Holy Eucharist is "the source and summit of the Christian life."