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“My Body Given for You” (Lk 22:19)

The Eucharist and the Logic of the Gift

“In the sacrament of the Eucharist, Jesus shows us in particular the truth about the love which is the very essence of God. … Precisely because Christ has become for us the food of truth, the Church turns to every man and woman, inviting them freely to accept God’s gift”

(Benedict XVI, Sacramentum caritatis, n. 2).


The slogan, “My body, my choice,” is often used in the abortion debate to argue that a mother has a right to end the life of an unborn child. The slogan expresses an idea is also relevant to debates about gender identity and euthanasia: that a person’s body is his/her own possession, and can be isolated, altered, or disposed of at will.

This upcoming conference seeks to present an alternative perspective that sees the body not as a matter of choice but as a gift. The Church has proclaimed this view for nearly two millennia through the celebration of the Eucharist. Christ instituted the Eucharist by saying, “This is my body, given for you” (Lk 22:19). In this way he established the logic of the gift as a paradigm for understanding the body. The Eucharistic body is a “body given for you,” and a person’s human body is a “body given for you” as well.

The conference intends to explore this logic from three perspectives:

– the “body given” in response to a vocation,

– the “body given” as it transforms our moral life, and

– the “body given” as a social body, embedded in the Church and in society, and thus in history and tradition.


21 June 2024
23 June 2024


Franciscan University of Steubenville
Veritas Amoris Project


Franciscan University of Steubenville
1235 University Blvd.
Steubenville, OH 43952 United States
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