for Sunday, June 26, 2011
The cup of blessing and the bread we break - the Body and Blood of our Lord
Jesus Christ. This solemnity repeats to us again the lessons of Holy
Thursday, but with the focus simply on the Eucharist and on the True
Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. When a person can say with faith that
he or she believes that Christ is truly present, body and blood, soul and
divinity, in the bread and wine consecrated at Mass, then there is a belief
in what we celebrate today.
This presence of Jesus Christ is foreshadowed in the manna of the Old
Testament. Manna is a food which God sent to His people to feed them.
Thus manna is a heavenly food and one which sustained the life of the
people in the Exodus. Christ is our heavenly food and sustains us in the
daily journey through life to death and to eternal life. We also are
living the Exodus.
The First Letter to the Corinthians helps us understand that we are all
one because we share in the one bread and the one cup. Just as Christ is
always one, even though He is given to us individually, so in Him we become
one. If we could live this mystery of our unity with one another, the
world would be transformed in the twinkling of an eye. It is the same
mystery as when Christ prays that we be one with Him as He is one with the
Father. This mystery is so vast and immense that only poetry can touch on
Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not
have life within you - John's Gospel is always teaching us about the bread of
life, especially in Chapter 6. We know that some of the followers of Jesus
left him because of His teaching about eating His flesh and drinking His
blood. Even today, this is a difficult teaching and many Christian will
not accept it and want to turn it into only a symbol and not a reality.
It is so clear from the writings of the early Christians that the
followers of Jesus did understand that Jesus Christ is truly present, body
and blood, soul and divinity, in the Eucharistic bread and wine. Will we
walk with Jesus and be His followers or will we leave Him? Let us bow down
Readings of the day:
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: