Fr. Jonathan Meyer and Fr. John Hollowell: 26 Things Pastors Can Do to Emphasize the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist

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August 29, 2019
Founder’s Quote
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Perpetual adoration at the Cathedral of Chihuahua, Mexico

26 Things Pastors Can Do to Emphasize the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist According to Church Law Governing the Novus Ordo  

By Fr. Jonathan Meyer and Fr. John Hollowell, On This Rock

“The pastor is to see to it that the Most Holy Eucharist is the center of the parish assembly of the faithful”

– Canon Law paragraph 528 –

This list is in response to the August 5, 2019 Pew Research Study: Just one-third of U.S. Catholics agree with their church that Eucharist is the Body and Blood of Christ.  Pope Paul VI said, “Modern man listens more willingly to witnesses than to teachers.”  What witness are we as pastors giving to our world about our belief in the true presence of our Lord?  The Church clearly offers us several ways to give witness to this reality.

If any of the following are to be implemented at your parish, do so with ample catechesis inspiring a deeper understanding to the “why” behind each sacred tradition, thus leading the faithful deeper into the mystery of Christ’s real and abiding presence.  For pastoral reasons, never abruptly make changes, but do make adjustments with teaching and explanation.   

1) Reverently genuflect to Jesus in the tabernacle when you enter the Church building and sanctuary and teach your sacristans, liturgical ministers and lay faithful to do the same.  Do this outside of Mass and as you enter and leave the sanctuary during Mass.  The improper custom of bowing to tabernacle is not the proper reverence (GIRM 247).

2) Use a tabernacle veil and catechize about the use of veils in the Old Testament and the tabernacle being the fulfillment of the Holy of Holies and the Ark of the Covenant.  This veil is mentioned in ID 25.

3) Be sure that you have better security surrounding the tabernacle key than you do for the parish safe (CCL 938 p3,5). “The tabernacle in which the blessed Eucharist is habitually reserved …(is) so locked as to give the greatest security against any danger of profanation.”

4) Use a chalice veil, which the GIRM states as “praiseworthy,” and catechize on how we are invited to go behind the veil and enter into the mystery of God’s love poured out for us (GIRM 118)….. Read more at