Gospel Reflection for June 6th – The Feast of Corpus Christi The Body and Blood of Jesus
United to Jesus and to each other
Today we celebrate the feast of Corpus Christi – The Body and Blood of Jesus. By now most of our churches are open and people are returning to pray with each other. Because of various social restrictions and lock downs we were for far too long isolated and separated from our friends and neighbours. We were sadly also unable to go to church and celebrate the sacraments freely, especially the Eucharist. For many people daily mass is a time not only to pray but to meet others in the parish community. A visit to the church for mass is both a spiritual and social experience. Through celebrating the Eucharist we are connected to each other and to Jesus in a most sacred and unique way.
The church reminds us that the Eucharist is the source and summit of Christian life. What does this mean for us today? It is the source of our daily lives as we draw life and energy from the Body and Blood of Jesus. Celebrating the Eucharist with others calls and helps us to live our daily lives as followers of Jesus. It is the summit to which we are called to return so we can be nurtured and nourished by Jesus.
During the celebration of mass we hear these words, Lord, let your Spirit come upon these gifts band makes them holy. It is not only the bread & wine that is transformed, so too are we. Through the power of the same Holy Spirit, we become the Body of Christ. We are enabled and encouraged to be the people of God; witnesses to Christ’s presence in the world. Today’s feast is not only about receiving the Body Christ; it is about becoming and being the Body of Christ. The Body of Christ is not something that we just receive; as the Church, the People of God, we are the Body of Christ.
When Jesus ate his last meal with his friends he gave them and us the gift of his Body and Blood. He said that whenever we share in this sacred meal we are to do it in memory of him. He also washed their feet as a sign of service and said that this was the example that they and we are to follow if we want to be his followers. When we care for and serve each other we are also asked to do it in memory of Jesus. The concluding prayer of the mass asks to go now to love and serve the Lord. How do we do this? Quite simply by loving and serving each other as best we can in our daily lives. Because we have shared in the Body and Blood of Christ we are called to love and serve each other as Jesus loves and serves us. Having been in communion with Jesus, we are called care for each other and be communion with those around us in our families and our community.
Celebrating and sharing in the Eucharist and serving each other are two sides of the same coin; we can’t have one without the other. Through the Eucharist we are strengthened and encouraged to live our lives as best we can followers of Jesus. We show this through how we treat others. As the letter from St. John reminds us; ‘Our love for each other should not be just words or talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action.’ (1 Jn. 3.18)
St. Augustine, and early church writer says that when we share in the Eucharist, ‘believe what you see and become what you are, the Body of Christ. When we say ‘amen’ we are saying, ‘yes’ I believe that this is Body of Jesus and I will become the Body of Christ for others.’
Today and always, may the Body and Blood of Jesus strengthen, encourage and sustain each of us.
|Gospel Sunday June 6th Corpus Christi|
|Mark 14:12-16,22-26 ©|
This is my body; this is my blood
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