Today we celebrate Corpus Christi, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. The mystery we celebrate makes us dive in the culmination of God’s love to us; the sacrifice of Christ that extends salvation to the whole world. Today’s traditional annual Eucharistic procession expresses that truth.
While we process with the Lord, we also proclaim his true presence in the midst of his people, fulfilling his promise to the disciples: “Behold, I am always with you until the end of the age” (Matthew 28:20). That presence to which we respond by our “Amen” at the reception of the Holy Communion is a comforting and saving presence. We say “Amen” to proclaim that we truly believe Jesus to be present, and that we receive his true Body and we drink his true Blood. By his body and blood Jesus Christ offers himself to us as food for eternal life. He comes to us in order to journey with us teaming up with us in the midst of the daily challenges of our lives. His presence in the Blessed Sacrament is an ongoing invitation to turn our eyes and our hearts to rely on him who sacrificed himself for our sake.
When we receive His Body and drink His Blood we are not expressing just a desire to be one with Him or to be like Him. We are truly made one with Him because His is the head of the body whose members we are meant to be.
This truth remains an ongoing challenge to many among us. A survey has revealed that only 30% of the people in the pews in our eucharistic celebrations believe in the true presence of Christ in the Eucharist. To give more dynamism and to strengthen faith in this truth, which is the foundation of our own lives and that of the Church, our Fathers in faith, the Bishops of the United States of America have decided to launch a three-year program of Eucharistic Revival. This starts today. For three years, we will journey together, striving to deepen our understanding, faith, and devotion to Eucharistic Christ.
This rediscovery of the truth about the true presence of Christ in the Eucharist starts with the step we take to ask the following right question: “Who do we receive in the Eucharist,” instead of “What do we receive in the Eucharist?” The response to the right question will lead us to the confession that we do receive “SOMEONE” rather than “SOMETHING” in the Eucharist. This is because the phrase “THIS IS,” which Jesus utters during the consecration is not figurative. It is the TRUTH realized in what is called TRANSSUBTANTIATION when the substances of bread and wine become the true substance of the body and blood of the Lord. Thus, the first step we take today is to move from the question of “WHAT” to the one of “WHO” I receive in the Eucharist as I say “Amen.”
As we carry Jesus Christ in our hearts at the sharing of His table, let us continue to pray for one another and for our parish family.