There is one aspect of transubstantiation that I have difficulty explaining.Doing this "in memory of Him" does not preclude His Real Presence in the Eucharist. It is not an either/or proposition, where doing this in memory of Him must logically mean He is not substantially present. Instead, it is a both/and proposition, in which our participation in the Last Supper is both a reminder of His sacrifice for us AND the reception of His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. The Sacrifice of the Mass is reminiscent of many things. However, it is also a very REAL sacrifice, and a very REAL reception of our Lord and Savior. We must avoid the either/or mindset that utterly plagues protestant theology.
I know that in the french version of the bible, Jesus, at the last supper, when He distributed the bread and wine, said "Vous ferez cela en memoire de moi." which means "You shall do this in memory of me.".
I have trouble consolidating the fact that the bread and wine become the body and blood of Christ when He Himself siad this would be done in memory of Him. I am obviously missing an element somewhere in my thinking and understanding.
A little help please?
Also, to take this from another angle, when the Jews celebrated the Passover, it wasn't just for them a time of remembering what happened so long ago. They believed that the Passover they celebrated was a mystical re-presentation of the first Passover of their ancestors. And so, by instituting the Eucharist on the feast of the Passover, we have the old meal and the new meal literally coming together in the person of Jesus. He has infused his very self into the celebration replacing the old flesh and blood with His own Flesh and Blood.
I hope that helps.