The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ
The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ Homily Transcript
>>When I listen to the first reading of the young men that Moses instructed to sacrifice these bulls and heifers and have the blood of these animals spilled out, I can’t help but think of the young men who didn’t spill the blood of animals but their own blood.
77 years ago, June 6th, 1944. On the altar of the continent of Europe their blood poured out into the bowls, the beaches of Normandy. These men, these brave men gave their lives for something they believed in. And often, whether it’s ‘D-day’ or ‘Gettysburg’ or any American battle soldiers often, as you all know, would carry the American flag.
The American flag was more than just a symbol though, or is more than just a symbol. It holds the meaning of our nation. The meaning of righteousness, of freedom. So, if I burn an American flag, I’m breaking the law. Versus if I just burn dish towel that happens to have an American flag on it, there’s nothing in that. But there’s something intrinsic about the American flag that’s more than just a piece of cloth with red and white stripes and blue and white stars on it. Right?
There’s something – there’s something about the item. It’s symbolic but also is a real symbol. Like the eucharist, right? The eucharist isn’t just a piece of bread. The wine isn’t just some mediocre wine crushed from grapes. Right? It’s the, as we know it’s the body – the real body and blood of our Lord.
It’s what we believe as Catholics. The most important thing that we have, the most precious thing we have in our world – the body and blood of Christ.
Why we come to church every Sunday. Why those of you who aren’t able to receive, who are at home for whatever reason, why you still want to watch mass. Right? Because this is the symbol of your love for God and God’s love for you.
The eucharist is very meaningful to me as a priest. Obviously I celebrate mass every day. This is the highlight of my life. But when I was a young man, not that much older than those young men who stormed the beaches of Normandy – 21, 22 years old. That’s when I felt my call to be a priest.
I was in college. And the key for my desire to be a priest or the way I was able to hear God call me to this was the eucharist.
Receiving communion wasn’t just some hollow gesture that we do as Catholics and that I did as a Catholic, but it was the symbol – is what the heart of my love. And, I wanted to give my life to God in the eucharist.
Loving the eucharist. Celebrating the eucharist. Bring the eucharist to you all and to the world. I found my vocation. I found the meaning of my life in the eucharist and I hope that you can say the same thing about yourselves.
Jesus body and blood is the meaning of our life.
Mark 14:12-16, 22-26
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