Monday, June 8, 2009

Body and Blood of Christ

We have a saying: "You are what you eat!". This means that whatever we take, it somehow becomes part of ourselves. Not only becoming part of ourselves but gives something good within ourselves. Take for example the food we take. It gives nourishment which made us strong. Moreover, when we take something inside ourselves it gives not only something good to us but in fact, does something within us. Take another example when we take medicines or an antibiotic pill. When the pill dissolves, a substance begins to work in order to inhibit or kill microorganism or the virus inside our body. In this way, it makes us feel good and restore our health.

This leads us to think on the food that our Lord Jesus is talking about in the Gospel reading today. "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."(Jn 6:51). For the Jews, it was hard for them to imagine taking the very flesh of Christ for their food. But they missed the point of Jesus in saying that He is giving his flesh for the life of the world. This promise finds its fulfillment in the celebration of the Eucharist, as mentioned in the second reading, where the bread and wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ. This is a real food. And we have to partake of it, as Jesus wished to do so. This happens when we receive the Sacred Host in the Holy Communion. So much so that he really enters into our being and becomes one with us.

But does he make something different within us after we received him in the communion? It should!

I had a chance in seeing and venerating in Lanciano, Italy, the very species of the bread became real flesh and the wine turned into real blood of Christ. What touched me much is the result of the scientific investigation conducted in 1970 by a group of scientists and experts when they found out that the flesh came from the muscular tissue of the heart: the myocardium. This made me conclude that whenever we received the Body of Christ, we also received His Heart, the seat of his unfathomable love. I can imagine love passing through our own veins, mixed with our own blood that supplies our mind, our extremities, our whole being. Indeed, my whole body is full of love.

This finds full meaning at the end of the Mass when the priest says, "Go, the mass is ended!". What is next?

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