The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

Homily Video

The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ Homily Transcript

A lady on a commuter train was reading a newspaper article about life and death statistics. Fascinated, she turned to the man next to her and said, “Did you know that every time I take a breath, somebody dies?” “Really,” he said. “Have you ever tried mouthwash?” 


Oh, that is really funny. There is a story of a priest who gave fourth graders a complete tour of the church. He showed them the tabernacle, the crucifix, the altar, the confessionals, the sanctuary, the sacristy, the stained-glass windows. He showed the fourth graders everything top to bottom on this tour of the church. Then at the end of the tour, the priest said, “Boys and girls, what’s been the most important thing you’ve seen on this tour?” A little fourth grader raised his hand and said, “the exit sign.” The priest thought to himself, ‘what a smart aleck. The exit sign so I can get out of here, get rid of you, and go play with my friends.’ The priest said, “okay, Charlie, why was the exit sign the most important thing you saw on this tour?” The little boy said, “well, Father, if we listen to the word of God and the readings and take it seriously and then receive holy communion at the end of mass, we go outside those exit doors to live it.” 

The priest was flabbergasted. Here he thought the child was being a smart aleck, the exit sign to get out of here and get rid of you. As the priest was giving the tour, the child was thinking, thinking, thinking, connecting, connecting, connecting-and thought the readings, from scripture, receive holy communion, at the end of mass, go outside the exit doors to now live it. What a profound answer. 

We are the body of Christ if we do and share. We are the body of Christ if we do and care. We are the body of Christ if we offer our lives that others may live. The real Jesus took real bread and real wine and identified himself with it. For the eucharist is an action and not a thing. The liturgy we celebrate should mirror the life we live. And many years ago, St. Augustine once said, “By receiving the eucharist, we are called to become what we have received.” 

Eucharist means we are vulnerable. It sometimes means painfully surrendering and asking, “Am I willing to suffer on behalf of love?” True discipleship is not without cost. Eucharist calls us to a radical dependence upon God, the ability to trust God, to trust life, knowing we don’t have all the answers. 

The eucharist we share should steer us into a holy reverence despite our struggles, pains, and questions. 

We must be a community of believers gathered and called to share in his name and serve in his name. 

As the seasons of the year change, so do we. As the body of Christ always realizes in life, change is inevitable, but growth is optional. 

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