«That bread which God the Word owns to be His Body, is the Word which nourishes the soul, the Word which proceeds from God the Word, and that bread from the Bread of Heaven which is placed upon the table, of which it is written: ‘You have prepared a table before me, against them that afflict me’ [Ps. 22:5].
And that drink, which God the Word owns to be His Blood, is the Word which saturates and inebriates the hearts of those that drink it. They drink in that cup of which it is said: ‘How goodly is Your inebriating chalice’ [Ps. 22:5] ….
Not that visible bread, which he held in His hands, did the divine Logos call His Body, but the Word, in the mystery of which the bread was to be broken.
Not that visible drink did he call his Blood, but the Word, in the mystery of which this drink was to be poured out.
For the Body of the divine Logos or His Blood, what else can they be than the Word which nourishes and the Word which gladdens the heart?»
– Com in Matt., 85
«We are said to drink the Blood of Christ, not only in the rite of the mysteries, but also when we receive His words in which life consists, just as He says, ‘The words which I have spoken are spirit and life’ [John 6:63]»
– Hom in Num., xvi, 9
«The bread and chalice are understood by the more simple people in the ordinary meaning of ‘Eucharist’, but by those who have acquired a higher knowledge in the more divine meaning of ‘the nourishing truth of the Word’.»
– Com in Joan., xxxii, 24
Origen of Alexandria (185-255 AD)