June 19, Sunday, 12th Week in Ordinary Time
The Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ.
Daily Readings: Genesis 14:18-20; Psalm 110:1,2,3,4; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26; Luke 9:11b-17
The feast of the body and blood is the feast of the real presence of Jesus in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.
Today, we think about how important it is that Jesus gave us His body and blood in the Eucharist, the highest and most important part of our Christian lives.
A few people in the history of the Church were given the grace to survive only on the Eucharist, eating no food except the Eucharist. Blessed Alexandrina of Portugal lived only on the Eucharist during the last thirteen years of her life.
Marthe Robin, in southeast France, did not consume anything except the Eucharist from 1928 until she died in 1981. There are several Eucharistic miracles where the Eucharistic bread is miraculously turned into flesh in different places worldwide. Some examples are Lanciano, Beanes Aires, and Potta.
Christ's gift of the Eucharist is the source and summit of our life together as the Church. The Council of Trent and the catechism of the Catholic Church declare that in the Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Jesus are, indeed, substantially and abidingly present, together with his soul and divinity. This is because of the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ.
In the Old Testament, Melchizedek brings out bread and wine and blesses Abram. In the New Testament, Jesus feeds five thousand hungry men with bread. Jesus is also the bread of life that fulfills every hungry person.
Therefore, the Eucharist, the real presence of Jesus, has critical messages for our Christian life.
First of all, it teaches us the need for proper preparation, genuine love, and respect for the Eucharist. We are unworthy of this sacrament as sinners. Therefore, there is always a need for repentance before receiving Holy Communion.
Secondly, it teaches us the importance of community, the bond that results from this sacrifice. Jesus humbled himself to be present among us.
Just as numerous grains of wheat are pounded together to make the bread and many grapes are crushed together to make the wine, we are also called to be unified in this sacrifice. Hence, Holy Communion should strengthen our sense of sacrifice, unity, and love.
With St. Thomas Aquinas', let us pray, "O Sacrament most holy!" "O, Sacrament Divine!" All praise and thanksgiving be Thine at all times.
Radio Veritas Asia (RVA), a media platform of the Catholic Church, aims to share Christ. RVA started in 1969 as a continental Catholic radio station to serve Asian countries in their respective local language, thus earning the tag “the Voice of Asian Christianity.” Responding to the emerging context, RVA embraced media platforms to connect with the global Asian audience via its 21 language websites and various social media platforms.