We have spoken about not complaining, and hopefully that helps to calm our minds and hearts. Then, last week, we went into the importance of listening. By listening, we open ourselves to the other, and perhaps we begin to really pray. This week, we have to learn to eat, spiritually speaking. There are of course many ways to eat spiritual food. Reading the Bible is an obvious way to feed your soul, praying the Rosary is another. But there is a special place put aside for the Eucharist. Christ says, “For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.”
Receiving Communion at Mass is perhaps the greatest act that we can do on this earth. “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.”
If I were to pinpoint one thing that is perhaps the most important thing that Jesus Christ gave us, it would be the Eucharist. The Second Vatican Council calls the Eucharist “the Source and Summit of the Church”. I believe we would be hard pressed to find words that could put the Eucharist in a higher place.
Why is this the most important food for us?
- He is the Sacrificial Lamb: This passage takes place during the Passover, and they are discussing bread and wine and eating the flesh and drinking the blood of the Lamb. Jesus Christ is the New Lamb that is given to us. Like the first Israelites who ate the flesh of the lamb and were saved from the 10th plague, the angel of death that was passing over their houses, so we are called to eat the flesh of the new Lamb in order to be saved and therefore have eternal life.
- He is given to us and for us: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.” Communion with Him, gives us life.
- He is there: Jesus Christ, the true mediator between God and man, really gives us His Body and Blood, under the appearance of Bread and Wine. This means that He is truly there! God has loved us so much that He is giving us His Heart through the Eucharist. It is not merely a symbol or a nice action. God is truly there. The first Christian knew this, they kept the Eucharist as their greatest secret, the earliest writers attested to it, many even were martyred for it.
Thus, the key word for today is “Food”. Do you seek out spiritual food throughout your day? Is spiritual food more important or less important to you than physical food? Finally, and above all, do you see that the greatest spiritual food that you can have is the Eucharist?
Fr Michael Therese Scheerger