Pastor’s Reflection | Corpus Christi 2023

My Dear Brothers & Sisters in Christ,
On this Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi) Weekend, the Church draws attention to the connection between Christ’s sacrifice and the Eucharistic sacrifice. While every celebration of the Eucharist is a memorial of Christ’s sacrifice, every time we celebrate the Eucharist, we remember the love of God for us manifested in the Passion, death, and Resurrection of Jesus the Christ – and the beauty of that Last Supper which ties it all
together. There can be no Eucharist if there is no sacrifice.

Even from the moment of the Last upper, Jesus intended the Eucharist to be related to self-giving. He illustrated this with the washing of the feet of the Apostles. We cannot, therefore, separate the Eucharist from self-offering. There can be no Eucharist if there is no victim.

The purpose of the celebration today, the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, is to remind us all of the importance and joy at receiving the Eucharist. We are reminded of Who it is we are receiving and what state of mind (and heart) that we are in when we receive it. The original celebration of the Body of Christ was begun in the thirteenth century promoted by one of our spiritual ancestors named Saint Juliana of Liege, a visionary and an Augustinian nun. Soon after this, Pope Urban IV asked the great theologian, Saint Thomas Aquinas, to prepare a Mass to celebrate this new feast, which he did.

Every time we receive Holy Communion, we are recommitting ourselves to being active members of the community that spreads the Kingdom of God through sacrificial love. The Eucharist is the Body of Christ, the real presence of the Lord. This real presence of the Lord is the reason why we always try to spend some time in silent prayer after we receive. The Eucharist, a word that means ‘thanksgiving,’ is the way that we thank God for the life we have received, and the saved community of which we are part of. We thank God in the Eucharist for giving us His power to make His presence real in the world.

With life’s many difficulties, the Eucharist gives us the sustenance to better face these daily problems.

Happy Corpus Christi!