A HOMILY FOR THE FEAST OF CORPUS CRISTI – JUNE 3RD, 2018 – SMG
+ Pax et Bonum! Peace and goodness to each of you this day!
Wow, all three of our readings today talk about covenants. Our first reading, Exodus, talks about God’s covenant with the Israelites when He save them in Egypt. This covenant is commemorated in the Passover Meal, the lamb, the unleaven bread and the herbs. Our second reading, from Hebrews, reminds us that the new Covenant with Christ, replaces the blood of goats and calves, with the new and more perfect sacrifice of Jesus’ blood. And finally Mark’s Gospel is talking to us about Jesus’ supper, the bread and the wine, that become so much more, at every Mass. These are beautiful passages of Scripture in and of themselves. But they are especially important to us today, as the Church celebrates the Feast of Corpus Christi.
It is so amazing that so many times in the Bible, God’s covenants with His people involve meals, or food, or God feeding us. For all of us who like to eat, some of us more than others, this is good news. We all like to eat sometimes! God has remarkable way of using food to make His agreements and covenants with us. Olive oil, and bread, and roasted lamb, and little honey cakes, and wine, and even manna and quail in the desert, am I making you hungry yet? God used all of these wonderful foods to enter into relationships and agreements with His people. Our God knows how to make an agreement with His people. Just think of what He could do today with Starbuck’s Coffee and some hot Krispy Kreme donuts!
The Ultimate covenant, or agreement, between God and His people, is the Holy Eucharist! This bread and this wine, two of the most basic, simple foods, from so many countries and cultures, are taken by Jesus at the Last Supper, and our transformed into the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ. The Eucharistic forever connects us with Christ’s soul-saving action on the Cross, the next day, His Sacrifice of His Life, for our sins. This is that same Body of Christ that was nailed to that cross. This is the same blood that dripped from His wounds. This is the Sacrifice that opens the gates of Heaven to each one of us, and that on the day that we die, will be what enables us to go to Heaven. The Eucharist is that BIG of a deal. This is the ultimate food of Heaven, and this isn’t just a representation of that covenant between us and God, this is that God Who have saves us!
Today, Corpus Christi, becomes our annual celebration of this extraordinary gift. This Feast is marked all over the world with special celebrations and processions. Today then becomes our day to share the Blessed Sacrament with the whole world, not just Catholics. We should know this, and celebrate this, it is central to our Faith. But Corpus Christi is our day to get the good news out, of what God has done for His people with this food. It reminds us, and it reminds others, even non-Catholics, and even non-Christians, that if we are open to hearing God’s message, that Christ’s redemption is for all of us!
This Feast Day marks the most visible example of a public witness of our beliefs. And yet, it can’t be our ONLY public witness. The Eucharist, True Bread from Heaven, and Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Jesus Christ, needs to be witnessed to, every day, with every ounce of our being, in every way that we can. The Eucharist was never meant to be locked up in tabernacles in our churches. This great gift, this amazing God, demands that we take Him our into the world every day! At the end of every Mass, we become living tabernacles! Not to keep Him locked up, but specifically to take Jesus out into the world today! That’s you, each one of you, and me. We walk out of this church, in just a little while, carrying within us, the exact, same, Sacrifice from the Last Supper, and the last, same Sacrifice from the Cross on Good Friday afternoon. This covenant demands that we do something with Him! You can’t have something as powerful as the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ inside your body, and not do anything with it! It’s impossible. It’s impossible if we really believe! Today, more non-Catholics and more non-believers will hear about the Eucharist than on any other day of the year. It’s true. But what are they hearing, and more importantly, what are they seeing from us, all the rest of year, about the power of the Eucharist? The Eucharist has the power to unite all of us together. But it won’t work if others around don’t see it lived out, or don’t see it making a change in our lives.
We are here on this Feast Day, celebrating because we are in absolute awe of a God Who would not spare His only Son for our sake. We are grateful that our God would make it so simple for us to have Him with us, until the end of time. But this gift is not just for us. It is for all. It is for the entire world. This doesn’t mean that we just start giving Communion to everybody and anybody. It does mean that we call others to share our Faith and our Gift of the Body and Blood of Christ. We need to give public witness to the power of this Sacrament. Others must know this secret to our salvation, that should never be kept a secret!
Let’s pray, and let’s hope, that after our celebration here today, and in every moment of our lives, God would send us into the world as a visible representation of the power of the Eucharist. May we bear its fruits, by building the Kingdom of God! And by letting the Living Bread of Life, live in us!
+ May God bless us on this Feast Day, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit… AMEN !!!
St. Maria Goretti… Pray for us!!!