Friday Homily - Third Week of Easter - Year I
FRIDAY – THIRD WEEK OF EASTER
Jesus promised / that he would give us his flesh to eat.
This is very difficult to understand and even offensive, especially to Jesus.
Therefore, in today’s Gospel, the Jews quarreled among themselves,
saying, ‘How can this man give us his flesh to eat?’”
At this point, Jesus did not modify or explain his statement.
Instead, he repeated the verb “eat” four times.
Jesus insisted we are receiving his Body and Blood in Holy Communion.
This is not contradictory to reason.
For example, a baby in the womb feeds on his mother’s flesh and blood.
However, the baby does not need to believe in his mother.
Similarly, Jesus has given us his body and blood to sustain our life in him.
Although we see only what appears to be bread and wine,
Jesus insists / that we must believe
that he is really present as the Eucharist.
The Real Presence in the Eucharist is the real Jesus.
It is God become man in the fullness of his divine nature,
in the fullness of his human nature,
in the fullness of his body and soul,
in the fullness of everything / that makes Jesus Jesus.
Pope Gregory the Seventh declared a profession of faith
that has become the cornerstone of Catholic Eucharistic piety.
“I believe in my heart and openly profess
that by the mystery of the sacred prayer and the words of the Redeemer,
the bread and wine placed upon the altar are substantially changed
into the true and life-giving flesh and blood of Jesus Christ;
that after the consecration, there is present the true body of Christ
which was born of the Virgin
and offered up for the salvation of the world,
hung on the cross and now sits at the right hand of the Father;
and that there is present the true blood of Christ
which flowed from his side.
They are present not only by means of a sign
and of the efficacy of the sacrament,
but also in the very reality and truth of their nature and substance.”
That is what our Catholic Faith demands of us / that we believe.
If we believe this, we are Catholic.
If we do not, we are not, no matter what people may think we are.