Christian theology refers to (a) the physical blood
actually shed by
Christ primarily on the Cross, and the
Christianity teaches was accomplished thereby; and (b)
the sacramental blood present in the
Eucharist or Lord's Supper, which
is considered by Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, and
to be the same blood of
Christ shed on the Cross.
The Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox churches, the Oriental
Orthodox churches, the Assyrian Church of the East, and Lutherans,
together with some Anglicans, believe in the
Real Presence of Christ
in the Eucharist. The Roman
Catholic Church uses the term
"Transubstantiation" to describe the change of the bread and wine into
the body and blood of Christ. Eastern Orthodox to have authoritatively
used the same term to describe the change, as in The Longer Catechism
of The Orthodox, Catholic, Eastern Church and in the decrees of the
1672 Synod of Jerusalem.
Lutheran churches follow the teaching of
Martin Luther in defining
the presence of
Christ in the eucharistic elements as sacramental
union (often misconstrued as consubstantiation), meaning that the
fundamental "substance" of the body and blood of
Christ are literally
present alongside the substance of the bread and wine, which remain
present. Lutherans too believe in and teach the Real Presence. Most
Protestant churches reject the idea of the Real Presence; they observe
eucharistic rites as simply memorials.
2.1 Roman Catholic
126.96.36.199 Litany of the Most Precious Blood
2.2 Eastern Orthodox
3 Artistic depictions
4 Relics of the
Blood around the world
5 See also
7 Further reading
8 External links
In the early Church, the faithful received the
Eucharist in the form
of consecrated bread and wine. Saint Maximus explains that in the Old
Law the flesh of the sacrificial victim was shared with the people,
but the blood of the sacrifice was merely poured out on the altar.
Under the New Law, however, Jesus' blood was the drink shared by all
of Christ's faithful. St. Justin Martyr, an early Church father of the
2nd century, speaks of the
Eucharist as the same body and blood of
Christ that was present in His Incarnation.
The tradition continued in the Church in the East to commingle the
species of bread and wine, whereas in the West, the Church had the
practice of communion under the species of bread and wine separately
as the custom, with only a small fraction of bread placed in the
chalice. In the West, the communion at the chalice was made less and
less efficient, as the dangers of the spread of disease and danger of
spillage (which would potentially be sacrilegious) were considered
enough of a reason to remove the chalice from common communion
altogether, or giving it on only special occasions. However, it was
always consecrated and drunk by the priest, regardless of whether or
not the laity partook. This was one of the main issues in the
Protestant Reformation . As a consequence, the
Catholic Church first wanted to eliminate ambiguity, reaffirming that
Christ was present both as body and as blood equally under both
species of bread and wine. As time went on, the chalice was made more
available to the laity. After the Second Vatican Council, the Catholic
Church gave a full permission for all to receive communion from the
chalice at every Mass involving a congregation, at the discretion of
See also Shroud of Turin#
Blood stains for laboratory researches.
Main article: Eucharistic theology
Main article: Procession of the Holy Blood
Blood relic in Santa Maria della Scala, Siena.
Catholic Church teaches that the bread and wine, through
transubstantiation, become the body, blood, soul and divinity of
Christ—in other words, the whole Christ—when consecrated. Until
its removal from the
General Roman Calendar
General Roman Calendar in 1969, the Feast of the
Blood was assigned to July 1.
Devotion to the Precious
Blood was an especial phenomenon of Flemish
piety in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, that gave rise to the
iconic image of Grace as the "Fountain of Life," filled with blood,
pouring from the wounded "Lamb of God" or the "Holy Wounds" of Christ.
The image, which was the subject of numerous Flemish paintings was in
part spurred by the renowned relic of the Precious Blood, which had
been noted in
Bruges at least since the twelfth century and which
gave rise, from the late thirteenth century, to the observances,
particular to Bruges, of the procession of the "Saint Sang" from its
Various prayers are part of the Roman Catholic devotion to the
Precious Blood. Those that mention the
Blood include the Anima
Christi, the Chaplet of Mercy of the
Holy Wounds of Jesus, and the
Chaplet of Divine Mercy.
May the most Precious Blood
which flowed from the Most Holy Wounds
of our loving Lord
Jesus pour over us,
to wash, cleanse, purify, heal, guide,
and protect us from all evil, harm, sickness,
and bless and make us as holy as we can be.
We ask this in the Holy Name of Jesus
and through His Most Precious
Blood and His Most Holy Wounds.
Litany of the Most Precious Blood
LORD, have mercy on us.
Christ, have mercy on us.
LORD, have mercy on us.
Christ, hear us.
Christ, graciously hear us.
God, the Father of Heaven, have mercy on us.
God the Son, Redeemer of the world, have mercy on us.
God, the Holy Ghost, have mercy on us.
Holy Trinity, One God, have mercy on us.
Blood of Christ, only-begotten Son of the Eternal Father, save us.
Blood of Christ, Incarnate Word of God, save us.
Blood of Christ, of the New and Eternal Testament, save us.
Blood of Christ, falling upon the earth in the Agony, save us.
Blood of Christ, shed profusely in the Scourging, save us.
Blood of Christ, flowing forth in the Crowning with Thorns, save us.
Blood of Christ, poured out on the Cross, save us.
Blood of Christ, price of our salvation, save us.
Blood of Christ, without which there is no forgiveness, save us.
Blood of Christ, Eucharistic drink and refreshment of souls, save us.
Blood of Christ, stream of mercy, save us.
Blood of Christ, victor over demons, save us.
Blood of Christ, courage of Martyrs, save us.
Blood of Christ, strength of Confessors, save us.
Blood of Christ, bringing forth Virgins, save us.
Blood of Christ, help of those in peril, save us.
Blood of Christ, relief of the burdened, save us.
Blood of Christ, solace in sorrow, save us.
Blood of Christ, hope of the penitent, save us.
Blood of Christ, consolation of the dying, save us.
Blood of Christ, peace and tenderness of hearts, save us.
Blood of Christ, pledge of eternal life, save us.
Blood of Christ, freeing souls from Purgatory, save us.
Blood of Christ, most worthy of all glory and honor, save us.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, spare us, O LORD!.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, graciously hear
us, O LORD!.
Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.
℣ Thou hast redeemed us, O LORD, in Thy Blood.
℟ And made us, for our God, a kingdom.
Let us pray.
Almighty and everlasting God, Who didst appoint Thine only-begotten
Son the Redeemer of the world, and hast willed to be appeased by His
Blood; grant unto us, we beseech Thee, so to venerate (with solemn
worship) the price of our redemption, and by its power be so defended
against the evils of this life, that we may enjoy the fruit thereof
forevermore in Heaven.
Through the same LORD
Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who liveth and reigneth
with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end.
The Orthodox teach that what is received in
Holy Communion is the
actual Resurrected Body and
Jesus Christ. In the West, the
Words of Institution
Words of Institution are considered to be the moment at which the
bread and wine become the Body and
Blood of Christ. But for the
Orthodox there is no one defined moment; rather, all that Orthodox
theology states is that by the end of the Epiklesis, the change has
been completed. The Orthodox also do not use the Latin theological
Transubstantiation to define the conversion from bread and wine
into the Body and
Blood of Christ, they use the word metaousia without
the precise theological elaboration that accompanies the term
According to Saint John Damascene, the
Sacred Mysteries (under the
form of bread and wine) do not become incorruptible until they are
actually received in faith by a believing Christian in a state of
In the Eastern Orthodox churches, and those Eastern Catholic Churches
which follow the Byzantine Rite, there is no individual devotion to
Christ separate from the Body of Christ, or separated
from the reception of Holy Communion.
When receiving Holy Communion, the clergy (deacons, priests and
bishops) will receive the Body of
Christ separately from the
Christ. Then, the remaining portions of the consecrated Lamb (Host) is
divided up and placed in the chalice and both the Body and
Christ are communicated to the faithful using a liturgical spoon (see
The blood shed by
Christ was a common theme in early modern Italian
art. Paintings of
Christ depicted on the cross and as the Man of
Sorrows have consistently been some of the bloodiest images in
Christian art. The blood of
Christ was a compelling artistic symbol of
his incarnation and sacrifice. As a theme for contemplation, it
provided worshippers with a means articulate their devotion.
Relics of the
Blood around the world
See also: Relics associated with Jesus
Basilica of the Holy Blood, Bruges, Belgium
Weingarten Abbey, Germany
Abbey of the Holy Trinity, Fécamp, France
St. James's Church, Rothenburg ob der Tauber, Germany
Basilica di Sant'Andrea di Mantova, Mantua, Italy
The Sudarium of Oviedo
The Shroud of Turin
The Relic of the Holy Blood, Westminster, England
Anglican eucharistic theology
Christ (military order)
Body of Christ
Missionaries of the Precious Blood
Blood Catholic Church
Feast of the Most Precious Blood
^ "The bread and wine are changed, or transubstantiated, into the very
Body of Christ, and into the very
Blood of Christ" (question 339).
^ "In the celebration (of the Eucharist) we believe the Lord Jesus
Christ to be present, not typically, nor figuratively, nor by
superabundant grace, as in the other Mysteries, nor by a bare
presence, as some of the Fathers have said concerning Baptism, or by
impanation, so that the Divinity of the Word is united to the set
forth bread of the
Eucharist hypostatically, as the followers of
Luther most ignorantly and wretchedly suppose, but truly and really,
so that after the consecration of the bread and of the wine, the bread
is transmuted, transubstantiated, converted and transformed into the
true Body Itself of the Lord, Which was born in Bethlehem of the
ever-Virgin, was baptized in the Jordan, suffered, was buried, rose
again, was received up, sitteth at the right hand of the God and
Father, and is to come again in the clouds of Heaven; and the wine is
converted and transubstantiated into the true
Blood Itself of the
Lord, Which as He hung upon the Cross, was poured out for the life of
the world" (Decree XVII).
^ Evelyn Underhill, "The Fountain of Life: An Iconographical Study,"
The Burlington Magazine 17.86 (May 1910, pp. 99-101) p.100.
^ The first historian of the "Saint Sang" was the Abbé Carton, "Essai
sur l'histoire du Saint Sang," Bruges, 1857. (noted Underhill 1910:100
^ Hiller, Diana (2015). "Saintly blood: absence, presence, and the
alter Christus". Parergon. 32 (Journal Article): 183–.
ISSN 0313-6221. – via Academic OneFile
^ Origenes Theol., Contra Celsum Book 1, section 66, line 13
Παίζων γοῦν τὸ ἐπὶ τῷ σταυρῷ
προχυθὲν αἷμα τοῦ Ἰησοῦ φησιν ὅτι
οὐκ ἦν ἰχώρ, οἷός περ τε ῥέει
Faber, Frederick William. The Precious Blood: or, The Price of Our
Salvation. 5th ed. 1860. London: Burns & Oates; Baltimore: John
Murphy. Reprint: Rockford, Ill.: TAN Books, 1979.
Sollier, J.F. (1913). "Precious Blood". In Herbermann, Charles.
Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
access-date= requires url= (help)
Vincent, Nicholas (2001). The Holy Blood: King Henry III and the
Blood relic. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Heinlen, Michael (1998). "An Early Image of a Mass of St. Gregory and
Devotion to the Holy
Blood at Weingarten Abbey". Gesta. 37 (1):
55–62. JSTOR 767212.
Bynum, Caroline Walker (2002). "The
Christ in the Later
Middle Ages". Church History. 71 (4): 685–71.
Missionaries of the Precious Blood
Structure of the Mass of the
Roman Rite of the Catholic Church
Mass of Paul VI
Pontifical High Mass
Chapter and Conventual Mass
Order of Mass
Vesting prayers in the sacristy
Vidi aquam in Eastertide
Sign of the Cross
Confiteor / Kyrie
Responsorial Psalm or Gradual
Gospel verse / sequence
Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed or Apostles' Creed
Orate fratres / prayer over the gifts
Sursum corda /
Sanctus / Hosanna
Eucharistic Prayer/Canon of the Mass
oblation / epiclesis /
Words of Institution
Words of Institution / elevation / anamnesis
texts and rubrics
Eucharistic Prayer II
embolism / doxology
Sign of peace
Ite, missa est
Ite, missa est / Benedicamus Domino
Extraordinary minister of Holy Communion
Parts of the
Sanctuary / Altar
Candles and lamps
Sacramental wine (or must)
of the Roman Rite
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Communion and the developmentally disabled
Communion under both kinds
Denial of Communion
Thanksgiving after Communion
Blood of Christ
Corpus Christi (feast)
Jesus and substitutionary atonement
Grace ex opere operato
In persona Christi
Historical roots of Catholic Eucharistic theology
Mysterium fidei (encyclical)
Origin of the Eucharist
Year of the Eucharist
Ad orientem and versus populum
Calendar of saints
Code of Rubrics
General Instruction of the Roman Missal
Holy day of obligation
Intercession of saints
Ordinary and propers
effects of prayer
Congregation for Divine Worship
Council of Trent
Ecclesia de Eucharistia
Eucharistic adoration and benediction
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Fourth Council of the Lateran
History of the Roman Canon
Lex orandi, lex credendi
Liturgical reforms of Pope Pius XII
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Pope Paul VI
Sacraments of the Catholic Church
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Tra le sollecitudini