Saturday, June 25, 2011

Transubstantiation

Feast of Corpus Christi, cycle A

The Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI has underscored the unbreakable link between our celebration of Corpus Christi and Holy Thursday when Christ instituted the Holy Eucharist.  In that Holy day, Christ transformed the whole world to himself from death to life, from condemnation to redemption, making us pleasing offerings to the Father.

In the celebration of Corpus Christ, the same transformation is happening: mystery of the transubstantiation or the changing of the substance of bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ.  The mystery of this change connotes three things:

First, that Jesus transforms the darkness of this whole world into his marvelous light.  Because of this redemption, the mystery we celebrate is rightfully called “thanksgiving” for we have so much to thank for; salvation is right before us.

Second, the changing of bread into his body applies to us when we eat the bread and drink the cup – we are assimilated in him.  In normal eating, food is assimilated in us; but in the Eucharist we are assimilated in Him.  We possess the same love Jesus has. We become instruments of Jesus in today’s world.

Thirdly, “in receiving communion” we allow ourselves to enter into the deepest act of unity possible – we become one with God and with one another.  This is the reality of being “Church”, and Pope Benedict reminds us to constantly lift the lives of our suffering brothers and sisters in order to fully realize the true meaning of “being Church” – totally one with the Most Holy Trinity and one with humankind as it is transformed according to the image of the Lord who said, "I will be with you until the end of time!"

May we adore the Lord in His Body and Blood in every mass that we celebrate!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Come, Holy Spirit!

Solemnity of the Pentecost, cycle A


It may be significant to know that when we talk about the Holy Spirit, we are not talking about a ghost but a Concrete God, a Paraclete, One that fills the Church with God’s goodness and power.  He fills us and makes us concrete manifestations of His presence.

The three concrete manifestations of the Spirit are:
1.     Breath or strong wind – wind that can be heard, but this is not a destructive wind but rather, a breath that gives and sustains life. The opposite one does not give breath; it kills.  We breathe God and are breathed upon by the Lord.  If far from God, we cease breathing life to others.  We die and bring others to death.  This anti-life mentality is ruining the core of our very relationship with God, the breath of life.
2.     Tongues of fire – the Holy Spirit rested on the apostles, distributing His presence among them.  Note that this fire doesn’t burn; not like the fires of destruction.  In purification, it brings out the truer part of man and his vocation to truth and love.  Never be afraid with this fire.  Be touched with the fire of Jesus’ everlasting love.
3.     Speaking in different languages – as God self-communicates, he produces unity far beyond we can imaging.  If a person distances himself away from others, he also distances away from the Spirit.   As Pope Benedict says in his message last year, "This Spirit manifests in the plurality of understanding, just as the Church is both one and multiple in nature.  The Holy Spirit involves all people and overcomes all walls and barriers."

How right is this prayer rooted in the very prayer of Jesus, “Come Holy Spirit; kindle us by the fire of your love.”  This prayer of Jesus continues this very moment to transcend space and time, to reach eternity in heaven.  Let us be one this Pentecost and for the rest of our lives.