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Our Unity in the Body and Blood

As I write there are four Eucharistic Pilgrimages crossing the country, heading to Indianapolis for the Eucharistic Congress in mid-July. Impressive numbers have been part of the Marian route which began here in Minnesota. The Eucharistic Congress is the concluding event to our three-year Eucharistic Revival. Today both at Sacred Heart and St. Stephen there will be Eucharistic processions. The pilgrimages across the country and our local processions are visible reminders that Christ is in the world.

The revival and our annual feast of the Body and Blood of Christ, invites us to reflect upon the spiritual food and drink we receive here at every Mass. Our sharing in the body and blood of Christ expresses our unity. The very word communion implies that we are one. Yes, we become one with God, but equally important we become one with one another. Despite our diversity we unite for a single purpose, to make Kingdom of God more visible in the world.

Our sharing of the body and blood of Christ challenges us to reach out beyond ourselves. At the Last Supper Jesus revealed he was going to sacrifice his life for us. Through his death on a cross he freed us from sin and death. Like Jesus we are invited to sacrifice our lives. To sacrifice our time to be with another. To sacrifice our agenda in order to do the Father’s will.

Our sharing of the Body and Blood of Christ needs to make a difference in our lives. Over the centuries much discussion has taken place on what happens to the bread and wine at mass. Eventually the word transubstantiation was adopted to explain what is happening. The Bread and wine truly become Jesus’ body and blood. However, what good is it if the bread and wine are changed and we are not?

Do you accept your own participation in God’s divinity? Are you ready to become the food you receive?” Every time we gather we are sent – Go in peace, Go in peace, glorifying the Lord by your life, Go and announce the Gospel of the Lord, or Go forth, the Mass is ended. We are sent forth to those who hunger for consolation midst their grief, hunger for reassurance midst doubt and despair, hunger companionship midst loneliness, or hunger for food and shelter midst poverty.

Thomas Aquinas insisted that while we believe that the bread and wine are truly transformed into the body and blood of the Lord, the more important goal is the transformation of the communicants into the body of Christ for the world.

Are you ready to become what you eat and drink?

Fr. Ron

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