Summary of the presentation of Most Reverend Thomas Collins, Archbishop of Edmonton

 

We should see the Eucharist not primarily as something that we create, but as the Mystery of Faith in which we encounter the Risen Christ, whose coming in glory we await, and as a divine gift that allows us access to the court of heaven. This approach to the Eucharist was found in the earliest days of the Church, in the Apocalypse, which itself arose out of the celebration of the Eucharist, and which gives us insight into its meaning.

 

The Christians of the Apocalypse faced challenges at least as great as ours, but they placed them within the context of a vision of the heavenly court.  We need to see each celebration of the Eucharist as a door into that world of glory, which allows us to place our struggles as disciples within the energizing context of the victory of the Risen Lord. The gift of apocalyptic perspective granted to us by God through each celebration of the Eucharist allows us more clearly to assess the moral questions which we face on our daily journey.

 

To live authentically as Christians, we also need an apocalyptic sense of urgency. When we realize that we are hurrying towards an encounter with Christ we are able properly to evaluate the claims of this passing world of ours, and to live each brief moment to the full.  It is above all in the Eucharist that we are made aware of the coming of the Lord, and this should instill in us a sense of saving urgency so that as we are sent out from the celebration we are moved to bring our life into harmony with the Lord whom we have encountered.

 

Thomas Collins, Archbishop of Edmonton