"The Christianity of history is not Protestantism. If ever there were a safe truth it is this, and Protestantism has ever felt it so; to be deep in history is to cease to be a Protestant." (-John Henry Newman, An Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine).

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church". -St. Ignatius of Antioch (ca 110 AD)a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

“But if I should be delayed, you should know how to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth.” 1 Timothy 3:15

"This is the sole Church of Christ, which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic." -CCC 811

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Corpus Christi! My Lord and My God!

(Photo Credit: stpatricksmithtown.org):

"I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst."

"I am the bread of life.

"Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."

The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us (his) flesh to eat?"

Jesus said to them, "Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day. For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him."
John 6:35,49-56)

No doubt, the Holy Eucharist adored in Catholic Churches tabernacles around the world is the same Body of Christ which he instituted in the Last Supper. Chapter 6 of John is not a symbolism of his Body-- he meant it literally. So that at His words, the same chapter 6 says "many of his disciples who were listening said, 'This saying is hard; who can accept it?'", meaning they understood the words of Jesus well. If Jesus was referring to this bread to be a "symbolism" only of his body then he must have corrected their wrong thoughts for he (in this same chapter) have read their inner rambling thoughts. But of course Jesus never did because he meant it LITERALLY!

That is why, the Catholic Church, throughout its more than 2,000 years of life, nourished by the same Spirit who descended upon the Blessed Virgin Mary and the apostles on Pentecost Day worship Christ in the Holy Eucharist with deep devotion.There is no other greater Catholic devotion than this. This is the summit, the climax, the heart of all our celebrations for without the Eucharist our Churches are useless entertainment theatres with dancing and singing on stage while someone is preaching Christ in Christless church. And it is in this same true Church which He established in St. Peter that Christ's Body is really venerated, adored, loved with deep devotion and eaten.

At the last supper:

"While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, 'Take and eat; this is my body." Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, "Drink from it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins." (Matthew 26"26-28)


St. Paul strictly warned every Christian NOT to receive his Body under the state of sin, rather one has have been purified his heart before receiving the bread which is his REAL BODY.

"For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus, on the night he was handed over, took bread, and, after he had given thanks,
broke it and said, "This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of
me."

In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes. Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord unworthily will have to answer for the body and blood of the Lord. A person should examine himself, and so eat the bread and drink the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself.

That is why many among you are ill and infirm, and a considerable number are dying. If we discerned ourselves, we would not be under judgment...(
1 Cor.11:23-31)

In today's Catholics, I saw a lot of communicants who lined up to receive his Body (and Blood) not mindful that they are about to enter into Christ's own body. While lining for communion, some would be playing, chatting. Seldom I see anyone genuflects before receiving His Body or making the sign of the Cross after receiving his holy Body. I think there should be basic catechism to Catholics before the Mass or before the Holy Communion to avoid profaning his Body and Blood. Of course we cannot judge a person's heart but we can remind them of the consequences of what they are about to do and to help them discern, a helpful and prudent reminder could instill in every Catholic how much we revere Christ in the Holy Eucharist. Teaching them to set aside some few moments with the Lord before and after communion and have a brief conversation with him in their hearts would be a nice and sincere gesture of loving the Lord in the Blessed Eucharist.

May the Body and Blood of Christ bring us all to everlasting life.
Amen.

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