How many people in the world today are feeling down, discouraged, depressed… and some even despairing? How many today are at least lethargic (lukewarm) in their faith, and at most have no faith at all?
I once was floundering and uncertain in my faith. I was seeking true meaning in life. I was seeking ways to nourish this insatiable hunger I had to be loved. But I was searching in all the wrong places and coming up empty handed.
Until one day God revealed to me the “food” that would satisfy my hunger. – “I am the living bread come down from Heaven… Unless you eat my Body and drink my Blood you have no life within you!” (Jn 6).
“Corpus Christi” – the Body of Christ– is given to Catholics at Holy Communion so that we can take Him into our own bodies and experience His tremendous, redeeming graces and love. Jesus took on our humanity that we could be drawn into His Divinity.
Truly this “living Bread” is the real presence, the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Redeemer, our “Bridegroom” who longs to be in deep communion of life and love with us.
And it is the answer to what I was longing for. Pope John Paul II wrote to us, “Is this not the greatest of human yearnings? …God has placed in human hearts a ‘hunger’… which will be satisfied only by full union with him. Eucharistic communion was given so that we might be ‘sated’ with God here on earth, in expectation of our complete fulfillment in heaven” (Mane Nobiscum Domine).
Whether or not people can put their minds around this, it is true. Jesus is what fills the God-sized void we all have for love. Jesus, especially in the “breaking of Bread” (Lk 24:35), is truly alive and in our midst. And, He “thirsts” (Jn 19:28) more than we do for this communion of life.
To receive Jesus is to consummate our Baptismal vows of intimate union with the indwelling presence of the Most Holy Trinity.
Outside of receiving Him we are called to remain always in a stance of spiritual communion. And, spending time with Him in adoration helps us to do this.
Who best aids us in disposing ourselves to receive our Divine, Eucharistic Bridegroom, but, Mary – she who is the “Spotless Bride,” who models what we as Church are called to become (Rev. 21).
“Come, come Lord Jesus!” (Rev. 22)
(COLUMNIST’S NOTE: This column is primarily written for Catholics in celebration of the Solemnity of Corpus Christi this weekend. Catholics believe that God is truly present in the Holy Eucharist after the consecration by the priest at Holy Mass.)