7 August 2015
On Friday 10 August this year Pope Francis met with members of the Eucharistic Youth Movement from many parts of the world. He listened to questions from Magat Diop born in Italy of Senegalese parents, Gregorius Hanzel from Indonesia, Ana Carolina Santos Cruz from Brazil, Pin Ju from Taiwan, Louise Courant from France and Agustin Aschoff from Argentina. The full transcript of the audience can be found on the website of Zenit.org.
Agustin asked this question: Pope Francis, what would you say to young people so that they discover the profundity of the Eucharist?
Here is the Pope’s response.
It always helps to think of the Last Supper, and that word that Jesus said when he gave the bread and wine, his Body and his Blood: ‘Do this in memory of me’. The memory of Jesus present there; the memory of Jesus that, in every Mass, is there - and he saves us there! - the memory of that gesture of Jesus, who afterwards went to the Garden of Olives to begin his Passion. The memory of such great love he who gave his life for me! Each one of us can say this.
The grace of memory, of which I spoke when I talked about grandparents, the grace of memory: the memory of what Jesus did. It’s not just a ritual, it’s not a ceremony. There are very beautiful ceremonies, military ceremonies, cultural . . . no, no. It’s something else: it’s to go there, to Calvary, where Jesus gave his life for me. Each one should say this. And with this memory, seeing Jesus, receiving the Body and Blood of Jesus, one reflects deeply on the mystery of the Eucharist.
‘Oh Father, when I go to Mass I’m bored . . .’ Because it isn’t a ritual. Remember this, if you want to deepen your reflection on the mystery of the Eucharist. This is a good verb, because Paul says it to one of his favorite disciples – I don’t remember if it was to Titus or Timothy, but to one of the two, who were two Bishops whom he had made Bishops.
Remember Jesus Christ (cf. 2 Timothy 2:8). Remember Jesus Christ, when I am at Mass there, he who is giving his life for me. And thus one deepens one’s reflection on the Mystery. And then, when you don’t go to Mass, but go to pray before the Tabernacle, remember that He is there, and that He gave his life for you. The memory. It was the command that Jesus gave his own: ‘Do this in memory of me’. That is, every time you do this celebration, remember me; every time you go to pray before the Tabernacle, remember this. And don’t forget what Saint Paul said to his disciple, also a Bishop: Remember Jesus Christ!