Lo! the angel' s food is given to the pilgrim who has striven;

Dear Visitors and Parishioners,

June 23, 2019

Lo! the angel' s food is given to the pilgrim who has striven; see the children' s bread from heaven, which on dogs may not be spent .

The solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus closes a series of liturgical celebrations that follow the closing of the Easter season. Through today 's celebration we are reminded of  the impor­tance of the Eucharistic mystery in the lives of every baptized person. It is through the Eucharistic mystery that we are fully engaged in the mystery of the Risen Lord in our lives and our world.

You might have noticed that I used the word mystery twice. A mystery in the Christian tradition refers to the sacred reality of what we know about but cannot fully describe or understand; but brings about concrete consequences in the lives of those who  partake  of them.

Whenever we participate in the Eucharist we have a concrete and close encounter with the divinity manifested to us in the Eucharistic species: bread and wine. Bread and wine become the shroud  that hides for us the fullness of the divinity, but the reality of the Eucha­ristic mystery goes even beyond that. We are not only exposed  to the divine mystery, but we are also allowed to become one with the mystery of God. We become what we receive. The presence of the living Risen Lord enmeshes with our lowly and sinful humanity. We become one with the Lord.

There is no higher moment in the life of a Christian than when we become one with the Risen Lord in the Eucharist. It is a moment that goes beyond devotion; it is a moment of deep silence in the presence of the mystery. We ought always to be fully aware of what we are doing when we receive the most sacred Body and Blood of Christ. We are to allow the fullness of God's love to overcome us after receiving the Eucharist. Saint Thomas Aquinas was very much aware of what he was trying to convey to us when he wrote the words quoted above from the sequence for today's Mass. We are not to make light of receiving the Eucharist. It is the greatest gift we can hope to receive from God. It is the opportunity of the close encounter with the divinity. God will be in front of us and become part of us.

-Fr. Alberto Rodriguez, O.P.