CORPUS CHRISTI, YEAR A.
14th June 2020
Deuteronomy 8:2-3,14-16; 1 Corinthians 10:16-17; John 6:51-58.
Today the church celebrates the sacrament of the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ. This sacrament is the real presence of Jesus Christ under the appearance of bread and wine. The dual focus of the readings is – the divine source and communion – remind us of the intention of Christ to unite with us in order to make life happy and eternal.
The divine nature of the Body and Blood of Christ is pictured in the first reading when allusion is made to the mana the ancestors ate in the desert – he fed you with manna which neither you nor your fathers had known, to make you understand that man does not live on bread alone but that man lives on everything that comes from the mouth of the Lord. They did not know the source but it quenched their hunger for food. But in the gospel, in the same manner of quenching thirst and hunger, Jesus Christ speaks of life eternal. Eternal life is achieved by eating of the flesh and drinking of the blood of the son of man. Anyone who does eat my flesh and drink my blood has eternal life, and I shall raise him up on the last day. The body and blood of Jesus Christ shows a progression from just satisfying hunger to gaining eternal life.
The communion with Christ is the participation in the Holy Eucharist. It is a divine help capable of releasing us from this earthly bondage of sin. We share in the Eucharist the same love that Jesus Christ expressed in his passion death and resurrection. According to the second reading – The fact that there is only one loaf means that, though there are many of us, we form a single body because we all have a share in this one loaf. Reconciliation between enemies is possible around the Eucharistic table. The hatred that motivates revenge, rivalry and envy, gradually melts away. In the Holy Mass, sinners and the righteous have the opportunity to exchange handshakes of peace.
Fr Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.