Fall 1969

Page 25

Ernest Lussier, S.S.S .



Sorne Reflexions on the Narratives of the Institution of the Eucharist

Today it is the histo1·ical value of the gospel narratives of the Eucharist and not their literary authenticity which is being questioned.

The last decade has been most fruitful in the renewal of Eucharistie theology especially from the biblical and pastoral viewpoints. It might be useful to cull here what may be considered as the acquir~d results of this recent work, specifying parti cu Jar points, sorne more important than others. There is first the agelong question of the relation of the Last Supper to the Jewish Passover. What is certain is that the Eucharist was instituted by Christ at Passover time, in a Paschal atmosphere, and that in its meaning the sacrament is closely related to the J ewish feast. As St. Paul puts it: "Christ, our passover, has been sacrificed" (1 Cor. 5 :7). The synoptic tradition (Mt. 26:17, Mk. 14:12, Lk. 22:7-8, 15) more interested in theology than in chronological detail has perhaps overemphasized this Paschal atmosphere by presenting the Last · Supper as an actual Passover meal. This first impression would 249