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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.

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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Sunday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time Download This Homily

 

JUNE 23, 2019


Sunday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time 


Genesis 14: 18-20

Ps 110: 1-4

1 Cor 11:23-26

Lk 9: 1b-17


The crowds learned about it and followed him. He welcomed them and spoke to them about the kingdom of God, and healed those who needed healing.


12 Late in the afternoon the Twelve came to him and said, “Send the crowd away so they can go to the surrounding villages and countryside and find food and lodging, because we are in a remote place here.”


13 He replied, “You give them something to eat.”


They answered, “We have only five loaves of bread and two fish—unless we go and buy food for all this crowd.” 14 (About five thousand men were there.)

But he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of about fifty each.” 15 The disciples did so, and everyone sat down. 16 Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke them. Then he gave them to the disciples to distribute to the people. 17 They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over.

 

The Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ


In a world that is reacting to the extreme Christian view of the human body as negative, with the proposal of a body culture with the proliferation of cosmetics, implants, facelifts, attires that accentuate the shape of the human body, body-building apparatus for men and women, gymnasiums and many more, the feast of the Corpus Christi comes as a blessing.The feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus points to three different dimensions of the feast all of which have a direct implication for the life of a Christian.


First of all, we reflect on the human body of Jesus, the flesh that he assumed in the event of the incarnation. That undifferentiated flesh that God received from Mary, that grew into a male foetus and then to a baby boy, boy and a man. On the one hand, his body was a means to communicate with us human beings in a way that we were able to understand; communication between God and human beings became by far easier as he had assumed our own human body. It is this story that the author of the letter to the Hebrews is trying to tell us when he observes: “Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son.” (Heb 1:1-2). On the other hand, by assuming the human body, God is reiterating the fact that what he had made in the first act of creation is still “very good.” (Gen 1:31). This sends us the message, that unlike the negative view of the body that the Church had held at least for some time, the body is good and hence, we are to take care of our body that is the temple of the Holy Spirit. Any harm done to the body under any pretext would be an affront to God and his creative wisdom.


The second dimension of the feast is the Eucharistic body of Jesus. The Eucharist is the way in which Jesus is present among us in his bodily form. The Blessed Sacrament is the body of Jesus given to us human beings in perpetuity. There are several theories by which theologians have tried to understand and explain the way the bread is turned into the body and wine is turned into the blood of Jesus. However, all of them have failed miserably to explain the way it really works. Hence, we are not trying to add to such theories. As a believing Christian, even with the help of the attempts made by our ancestors to understand how it works, suffice it to know that taking the bread in the context of a Passover meal Jesus said: “This is my body.” If I cannot believe the words of the Lord, whatever theory, dogma, and doctrine produced by the theologians will not help me either. Hence, I pray with St Paul that I be given the eye of the heart in order understand what the Eucharist really implies for the eye of my intellect fails miserably to grasp the depth and breadth of it.


The third dimension of the body of Christ is the Mystical body. The Church is the body of Jesus as indicated by the experience of Saul of Tarsus on his way to Damascus. He had enough documents and warrants to curb the growth of the young Church in its infancy, and to obliterate it off the face of the earth. And, being a conscientious and trained Pharisee he had all the valid reasons for what he had set out to do. However, on the way he had experience so dramatic or traumatic, that he took a U-turn in the believed that he had held so far. As he would repeatedly tell his listeners, the voice that he heard at the time was “why do you persecute me?” Not my Church, not my disciples, not my believers, but me! Did he hear well? Saul clarifies: “Who are you, Lord?” Came the answer loud and clear. There is no mistaking this time. “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.” (Acts 9:4-5). Perhaps it is from this experience of Saul that he later recognizes the Church as the Mystical Body of Christ. He depicts the Church as the body of Jesus and Jesus himself as its head (Eph 5:23).


Corpus Christ, the Body of Jesus means all these at once. They cannot be separated from each other. Without the human body of Jesus, there is no Eucharist, which is the centre of the Church whose head is Christ himself. As we celebrate the Feast of the body and blood of Jesus we pray for the grace to understand the depth of the meaning of the feast and then for the strength to keep Eucharistic Body of Jesus the centre of our life that our own human bodies and the mystical body that the Church is, might be maintained spotless, even as the head himself is spotless.

Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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