Saturday, June 17, 2017
SUNDAY, THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST
June 18, 2017 – SUNDAY, THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST
Dt 8: 2- 3, 14b- 16a / 1 Cor 10: 16- 17
Sequence, Lauda Sian / Jn 6: 51 -58
Originating in France in the mid-thirteenth century, the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi) was extended to the universal Church by Pope Urban IV in 1264. The Feast calls us to focus on the two manifestations of the Body of Christ, the Holy Eucharist and the Church.
2nd Reading: 1 Cor 10: 16- 17
The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a communion with the blood of Christ? And the bread that we break, is it not a communion with the body of Christ? The bread is one, and so we, though many, form one body, sharing the one bread.
GOSPEL READING: Jn 6: 51 -58
Jesus said to his disciples, "I am the living bread which has come down from heaven; whoever eats of this bread will live forever. The bread I shall give is my flesh for the life of the world."
The Jews were arguing among themselves, "How can this man give us flesh to eat?" So Jesus replied, "Truly, I say to you, if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. The one who eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives with eternal life and I will raise him up on the last day.
"My flesh is really food and my blood is drink. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood live in me and I in them. Just as the Father, who is life, sent me and I have life from the Father, so whoever eats me will have life from me. This is the bread which came from heaven; unlike that of our ancestors, who ate and drank and later died. Those who eat this bread will live forever."
Even children ask, "Why did Jesus have to die? And why in such a horrible way?" Standard theology would answer that Jesus offered his body and blood to save humanity from sin and death. For most children, that may suffice.
However, some could question further, "But couldn't God with his infinite power find an easier and less painful way to save everyone?" This may be wishful thinking but it is a valid question. Jesus himself may have wondered about it when he prayed, "Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me." (Mt 26:39)
Indeed, the simpler and more authentic explanation to Jesus' sacrifice of body and blood is that it was God's will and Jesus' choice to follow it. Among the many options and possibilities, this way was chosen, brutal and hear wrenching. It is difficult to make sense of it. Parents shield their children from harm; parents can be so protective of their children that they would willingly sacrifice themselves for their children. How must Jesus have felt when asked by his Father to offer himself to such torture and pain? How would a parent feel when he/she asks his/her child to undergo torture and pain? It must have been a very difficult decision to make.
Nonetheless, Jesus offered his body and blood as a gift on the cross. It did not have to be that way. But it showed the lengths to which love did go. It is a love that endures any pain, accepts insults and rejection, and still forgives, stubbornly refusing to give up on people. This great love is what we remember and celebrate in the Eucharist. At Mass, Jesus does not look at who we are or what we do or did, but simply loves and gives himself freely for us.
So if a child asks why Jesus died on the cross, a better response would be, because sometimes that is what love entails. And we should ask ourselves, "How far is my own love willing to go?"
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER INTENTIONS:
ALFRED JOHNSON GOTAMCO DY
ANNE GRETCHEN CHOA-UY
WILBERT LIM & REGINA SINGSON LIM
IN MEMORIAM (†)
TONY NG CHU CHEE (NOV 1,1919 - JUNE 18, 2005)
For the repose of the soul of William UY
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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