“This is My Body, that is My Blood” (Mark 14:22-24). Could there be any higher phrases to listen to on Corpus Christi Sunday? The Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus. Jesus within the Eucharist, that which each coronary heart has been eager for all through their lives, realizing it or not. There’s nothing prefer it, is there, in all the world. No different act, no different prayer, no different spiritual expertise. Literally, Heaven coming to earth for us.
Our Lord on this Holy Eucharist feeds us and He leads us and He bleeds for us. First, He feeds us within the Eucharist, and that’s the plain one, isn’t it? Our brothers and sisters of separated Christian communities, they’d all agree on that. We have communal meals, everybody is aware of the picture of the Last Supper that’s on the worship assist or on the bulletin. In the Gospel we hear the disciples saying, “Where would you like us to go and put together so that you can have fun the Passover meal?” (Matthew 26:17) When we hear Passover, after all, we consider that meal that marked the start of the liberty from slavery in Egypt, with the slaughtering of the lambs, the sprinkling of the blood upon the doorpost, and in addition the consumption of its roasted flesh. (See Exodus 12.)
The Lamb was given to them to present them energy on their journey. They have been about to make their means out of Egypt within the route of the Promised Land. And the Eucharist provides us energy on our journeys as properly to sure, please God, the Promised Land.
It’s additionally a meal that jogs my memory of my Italian Grandma as a result of it’s a meal of abundance. Notice these 4 verbs that Jesus makes use of. He takes the bread, He blesses it, He breaks it, and provides it to them. See Mark knew this and he was doing it deliberately. Those 4 similar precise verbs have been those that Mark selected to make use of one different time. You bear in mind when it was, proper? The multiplication of the loaves and the fish. He took them, He blessed them, He broke them, and He gave it to them. This is not only one meal, however it’s a meal of abundance. There isn’t any scarcity. He fed 5 thousand with a couple of loaves and a few fish. And there’s no scarcity of Jesus. We’re not dividing one Body amongst many. It is that reward which matches on, which is one for all. Christ feeds us with abundance.
He additionally leads us within the Eucharist. Jesus informed the disciples “Go into town and a person will meet you carrying a jar of water” (Mark 14:13). That can sound like a throwaway line, I do know, however it’s crucial. Note that, within the first century, males didn’t carry water. Now everybody carries water. But, massive jars of water, that was significantly ladies’s work, until there was a family during which there have been no ladies. Scholars will debate whether or not it was group of celibates or no matter, however the necessary factor was for us to know that this was not some unintended factor like any person with brown hair or inexperienced eyes. Instead this was any person that Jesus knew about. He was main the way in which. He had ready it and he prepares it for us as properly.
He is aware of the place it’s that we’re to go and the way it’s that we’re to reside. And so, actually, He goes with us into the streets within the Eucharistic procession. The Cross, the candles, and the bell, sure, they’re out in entrance, however it’s Jesus who’s main the way in which and acknowledging that He is main His folks. He by no means abandons us. He actually walks with us. Jesus doesn’t selected the worthy, as a substitute He makes worthy these He chooses. And He walks with us and He leads us.
Finally, He bleeds for us. We name this Corpus Christi, after all, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. We can always remember the Blood. The readings today appear to be dripping with it. You know the historical past of it, I hope, that this feast day was added to the calendar after a miracle that occurred again in 1263 again in Bolsena, Italy when a number visibly bled upon the corporal. And they went in procession afterwards.
But return 2,500 years earlier than that and it was the primary Passover when, once more, the blood is poured out, once more sprinkled on the doorposts. And then quick ahead a bit, when they’re out within the desert Moses takes the animal sacrifice, takes the blood from it and sprinkles it in two locations, one upon the altar—the signal of God—after which, two, upon the very folks, the folks of God. We can all push again on it, it sounds terrible having blood sprinkled upon them. But it was an indication of being sure collectively. We nonetheless use the time period generally, don’t we? “Blood brothers”—life-blood being shared between two being sure collectively. How stunning for the blood to be sprinkled on the doorposts, for the blood to be sprinkled upon the altar, and upon the folks. But we don’t cease there. Not simply on our objects, not simply on our our bodies, however into our very selves He pours out His Body and Blood.
He involves this altar below the looks of bread and wine, it’s true, however it’s not only a image, it’s not only a communal meal. It is His life, His Body and Blood. Thus St. Paul says that we mustn’t ever strategy the altar unworthily (1 Corinthians 11:29). If we’re conscious of great sin, we should confess it in order that we might obtain that nice reward. Yes, many in our world will say “You realize it’s a pleasant image of Jesus’ life.” Now, I depart you with the quote of Flannery O’Connor, she was at a desk with associates the place they have been saying that very factor, “What a pleasant image it’s of the religion.” She stated, “If it’s only a image, then to hell with it.” No, it’s His very life poured out for us in order that we might have life.