What did the first Christians believe about the Eucharist?
How did they follow Jesus’ command, “Do this in remembrance of me”?
How did they celebrate the Lord’s Day?
What would they recognize in today’s Mass?
The answers may surprise you.
In The Mass of the Early Christians, respected author, scholar, and television host Mike Aquilina reveals the Church’s most ancient Eucharistic beliefs and practices. Using the words of the early Christians themselves — from many documents and inscriptions — Aquilina traces the history of the Mass from Jesus’ lifetime through the fourth century. That the Mass stood at the center of the Church’s life is evident in the Scriptures, as well as the earliest Christian sermons, letters, artwork, tombstones, and architecture. Even the pagans bore witness to the Mass in the records of their persecutions.
These legacies from the early Church bear witness to the same worship Catholics know today: the altar, the priest, the chalice of wine, the bread, the Sign of the Cross … the “Lord, have mercy” … the “Holy, holy, holy” … and the Communion.