THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYER :The Eucharistic prayer has roots in the Jewish table prayers recited at every meal. Near the start of the meal, the one presiding over the community would take bread and speak a blessing which praised God, saying; “Blessed are you, Lord, Our God, king of the universe, who has brought forth bread from heaven. The bread was then broken and given to the participants for eating the various courses of the meal. In the Passover meal, there also would be a reading which re-told the story of the first Passover in Egypt and interpreted that foundational event in Israel’s history for the current generation. This made God’s saving deeds of the past present and applied the story to their lives. When the meal neared its conclusion, the presider prayed a longer blessing over a cup of wine. This blessing has 3 parts:
Praise of God for his creation :Thanks-Giving for his redemptive work in the past (eg. giving of the covenant, the land, the law) Supplication for the future that God’s saving works would continue in their lives and be brought to their climax in the sending of the Messiah who would restore the Davidic Kingdom. These ancient Jewish elements are also found in the Eucharistic prayers of the Mass today.