The novel Christian reality is this: Christ's Resurrection enables man genuinely to rejoice. All history until Christ has been a fruitless search for this joy. That is why the Christian liturgy-Eucharist-is, of its essence, the Feast of the Resurrection, Mysterium Paschae. As such it bears within it the mystery of the Cross, which is the inner presupposition of the Resurrection. To speak of the Eucharist as the community meal is to cheapen it, for its price was the death of Christ. And as for the joy it heralds, it presupposes that we have entered into this mystery of death. Eucharist is ordered to eschatology, and hence it is at the heart of the theology of the Cross.
-Joseph Ratzinger, The Feast of Faith: Approaches to a Theology of the Liturgy, p. 65-