Piece Work


Now this last example is very interesting. What happened when Christ broke the bread at the Last Supper? He broke a thing into fragments. But each piece contained the whole: that is, his entire body. And, again, what happens if the Host, after it has been consecrated by a priest, falls to the floor of the church and crumbles, and if a mouse then eats the crumbs? Does the mouse eat Christ’s body? I do not wish to develop this argument, merely to remind you that this was one of the arguments used by Protestant reformers to ridicule Catholic practice.

— Jacqueline Lichtenstein, “The Fragment: Elements of a Definition,” in William Tronzo, ed., The Fragment: An Incomplete History, 2009