“Through Eucharist earthly flesh is deified and having been deified enters into communion again with earthly flesh”

The Eucharist … is the Gospel in action. It is the eternally existing and eternally accomplished sacrifice of Christ and of Christ-like human beings for the sins of the world. Through it earthly flesh is deified and having been deified enters into communion again with earthly flesh. In this sense the Eucharist is true communion with the divine. And is it not strange that in it the path to communion with the divine is so closely bound up with our communion with each other. It assumes consent to the exclamation: “Let us love one another, that with one mind we may confess Father, Son and Holy Spirit: the Trinity, one in essence and undivided.”

The Eucharist needs the flesh of this world as the “matter” of the mystery. It reveals to us Christ’s sacrifice as a sacrifice on behalf of mankind, that is, as his union with mankind. It makes us into “christs,” repeating again and again the great mystery of God meeting man, again and again making God incarnate in human flesh. And all this is accomplished in the name of sacrificial love for mankind.

But if at the center of the Church’s life there is this sacrificial, self-giving eucharistic love, then where are the Church’s boundaries, where is the periphery of this center? Here it is possible to speak of the whole of Christianity as an eternal offering of the Divine Liturgy beyond church walls. What does this mean? It means that we must offer the bloodless sacrifice, the sacrifice of self-surrendering love not only in a specific place, upon the altar of a particular temple; the whole world becomes the single altar of a single temple, and for this universal Liturgy we must offer our hearts, like bread and wine, in order that they may be transubstantiated into Christ’s love, that he may be born in them, that they may become “Godmanhood” hearts, and that he may give these hearts of ours as food for the world, that he may bring the whole world into communion with these hearts of ours that have been offered up, so that in this way we may be one with him, not so that we should live anew but so that Christ should live in us, becoming incarnate in our flesh, offering our flesh upon the Cross of Golgotha, resurrecting our flesh, offering it as a sacrifice of love for the sins of the world, receiving it from us as a sacrifice of love to himself. Then truly in all ways Christ will be in all.

St Maria Skobtsova

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9 Responses to “Through Eucharist earthly flesh is deified and having been deified enters into communion again with earthly flesh”

  1. Mary Holste says:

    This is terrific! Where can I find more of her writings? Thank you, Father Aidan!


    • Fr Aidan Kimel says:

      I don’t know, Mary. I found it on the web. Please do some searching and let us know what you find!


  2. jrj1701 says:

    Father bless,
    Knowing that Saint Maria was martyred in a Nazi death camp makes these words even more powerful to me.


  3. orthodoxchristian2 says:

    Did they kill her for being a Slav? Oh, think what they would have done to me and my family, if I lived back then. Perish the thought! She is truly a Saint of God.


  4. Dana Ames says:

    There is 1 book of her writings that I know about: Mother Maria Skobtsova: Essential Writings (Modern Spiritual Masters), published by Orbis Books.

    Also, the Orthodox Peace Fellowship web site http://www.incommunion.org/ has a section on St Maria, link in the right-hand “Resources” column.



  5. Nelson says:

    Reblogged this on Byzantium on Brew.


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