•                             In the parable of the prodigal son, there is mention about the return of the repentant son. “Father, Ihave sinned against heaven and before you. I am nolonger worthy to be called your son”.Forgettingeverything, the father received the repentant son; andhe was given again the title of sonship. To signify this,he was given a bath, robed in the best dress, and a ringwas put on his finger. There was a banquet arranged tohonour him and all rejoiced at his return. (Lk.15:1-24).God has sent His son to redeem sinful man whowent astray from Him. Jesus sacrificed himself andredeemed mankind. He arranged an eternal banquetfor man and fed him with his own body and blood.He invites us to enjoy this banquet in every holy Qurbana We become one with Jesus when we eat hisbody and drink his blood in the holy Qurbana; and thus,become inheritors of the salvation secured for usWe remember this mystery in the reconciliation rite of theholy Qurbana. There are four important divisions in thisrite, namely, the rite of reconciliation, the rite of fraction, the rite of communion, and the conculiding rite.

    The Rite of Reconciliation

    We must adorn the sacred robe of reconciliation in preparation to attend the banquet Jesus arranges with his own body and blood.The rite of reconciliation prior to receiving the holy communion helps us unite ourselves with God.

                 The rite of reconciliation starts with the privateprayer, “O Christ, you are the peace ...” followed by thepsalm of repentance, “Have mercy on me, O God”.Theincensing, at this juncture, leads us to forgiveness ofsins.

    ACTIVITY - 1

    Read the passageGen. 3: 1-19 note theimportant problemsevolved as a result of sin.
    Find out also the aftereffects of sin in ourpresent day life.

    The Rite of Fraction

                                 The rite of fraction that follows reveals the holyQurbana's characteristic power to absolve sins. As theprayer, “ I am the living bread... from heaven..” isrecited or sung, the celebrant raises the sacred host,and after dividing and dipping one half of the host in thesacred blood holds it together with the other half. The sacred body and blood of Jesus sacrificed for theexpiation of our sins is being adored.

    The grace of our Lord Jesus

                             With this prayer, the rite of fraction ends. Theprayer "The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ ..."is thewishing rendered by St. Paul The grace of Jesus, thelove of the Father, and the presence of the Holy Spirit give us a heavenly experience Let us receive thisblessing with a request for the grace to enjoy constantlythe divine presence, the right of every Christian.

    The Karozutha of Reconciliation

                     The karozutha prayer- "Let us approach themysteries of the precious body and blood”- preparesus for the holy communion. This prayer reminds ofhow we must prepare to receive holy communion andwhat are the benefits thereof. The reconciliation rite ends with the celebrant's reconciliation prayer-“Lord,inyour mercy forgive the sins and offences of yourservants

    The Communion Service

                           The most important element of this rite isreceiving the holy communion and the consequentunion with God. All the other elements of the holyQurbana lead to the holy communion.

     

    PREPARATORY MEASURESTO BE FOLLOWED TO RECEIVEHOLY COMMUNION:

                       Make your conscience clearAvoid spite for others.Keep away from quarrel.with enmity.Get rid of ill-will.Be in harmony with everyone.Keep the spirit of love.And be pious.

    OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN

                     The Lord's Prayer is recited as a preparationfor receiving the holy communion. Even though wereconcile with God and correct our evil ways, we stilllive amidst temptations. Hence the  celebrant imploresthe providence of God to be ever with the faithful.

                    ACTIVITY - 2

    Read the text of holy Qurbanaand find out the following:
    1. The prayers and service that
    express contrition for our sins.
    2. Prayers which express
    the holiness of God.
    3. Prayers that enumerate
    the forgiveness of sins through
    the holy Qurbana.

     

    An Invitation for Holy Communion

                                  The celebrant blesses the community as a preparation to receive holy communion We, whoreceive the sacred body and blood of Jesus, the breadof our life, accept Jesus as our Lord. The celebrantprays that all the members of the worshippingcommunity may have this experience. We are, in fact,receiving through the holy Eucharist the resurrected Jesus (Lk.24:13-35).

    Partake in the Sanctity of the Triune God

                                 The holy Eucharist is inseparably connected with the Holy Trinity; so, holy communion helpsus acquire the holiness of our God. The proclamation - “ the holy Qurbana is for the holypeople” -reminds us that, when we receive the holy communion, we intimate ourselves witthe Father, the holiness of the Son and the Holy Spirit, and thus we partake in divine sanctity.

    The Holy Communion

                                In response to the invitation of the celebrant, thecommunity confesses that God alone is holy. Thegrace of God makes us worthy to receive holycommunion. We must mentally pray for this grace and receive the holy communion We, participating in theholy Qurbana, which is both a sacrifice and a banquet,should receive the body and blood, Jesus breaks andserves. It is necessary for the completion of our Eucharistic experience We must, therefore,participate in the holy Qurbana with the necessarypreparation and purity of heart.

    The Fruits of the Holy Communion

                            The holy Qurban is both a sacrifice and a banquet. Weare granted forgiveness of sins, remission of debts,and divine life. This insures us of hope in theresurrection of the dead and a life anew in heaven. So,we participate in the holiness of God and attain divinelife. This provides us with the experience of salvation;and the holy Eucharist is the center of Christian life.

    The Concluding Service

    The celebrant, the deacons, and the community render thanks for the holy Eucharistin the concluding prayers. The important rites and prayers of this rite are the Lord's Prayer (only in the solemn form), concluding blessing, farewell prayer and the kissing of the altar.

    Thanksgiving Prayers

                             The worshipping community who has got a foretaste of heaven through the holyEucharist place their trust in the end of this world and heavenly life, and praise God through their thanksgiving prayers Praises are lavished upon Jesus in honour of his redemptivedeeds. Requests for eschatological salvation and description of the many blessings Jesus granted are also mentioned. They pray that the sacred mysteries received in faith may befor the remission of their debts. Besides, they pray to make them worthy enough to accorda befitting welcome to Jesus on his glorious second coming and praise him in union with allin heaven. While thanking God for making us worthy to partake in the life-giving sacrifice,the community also implore for forgiveness of sins, resurrection, and a new life in heaven.

    The Lord's Prayer

                  If the prayer Our Father is recited at this momentthe community praises the heavenly Father in all happiness

    The Final Blessing

                        Before ascending to heaven, Jesus blessed hisdisciples and said,“Go into all the world and proclaimthe good news” (Mk.16:15). Jesus blesses each andevery one of us to continue this mission; and fills us withthe grace and power of the Holy Spirit.
    Actually, Jesusgrants through this blessing the readiness to bearwitness to the word of God with our words and deeds.
     

    Kissing of the Altar

    The celebrant kisses the altar, a symbol of the'sepulchre' of the Lord and the altar of oursanctification, and recites the prayer of farewell 
                              Jesus has become a sacrifice to gather the scattered people of God (Jn.11:15). He
    longed to unite the people dispelling their disunity, and lead them to togetherness in life.
    With this intention, he nourished them with his sacred body and blood.One who partakes in
    his sacrifice and feeds on his sacred body will attain divine life.
                              Let us unite ourselves with Jesus, participating in his sacrifice and feeding on his
    sacred body and blood. Let us draw sustenance from the Holy Eucharist and be the
    ministers of love and service so as to sacrifice ourselves in the different spheres of our life.
    Thus, our lives will be blessed, and become redemptive.
     

    LET US

    READ AND MEDITATE THE WORD OF GOD

    (Jn.6 : 48 - 59)

    A Verse to Remember

    “Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood
    have eternal life”(Jn.6:54).

    Let us Pray

    O Jesus, who nourished us with your body and blood,
    please make us worthy for your eternal banquet

    My Resolution

    Whenever I participate in the holy Qurbana, I will receive holy communion

    Teachings of the Fathers of the Church

    The people of Israel ate the lamb in Egypt. Its symbol sanctified them.
    If it were so, how much more will the true lamb sanctify the people?
    (St. Ephrem)