Saturday, June 6, 2015
The Eucharist--Nourishment for Life: Solemnity of Corpus Christi (Replaces 10th Sunday of Ordinary Time)
Note--I recorded this homily twice this weekend because of First Communion. See below for my regular homily and the homily I gave with input from our First Communion students.
(Listen to this homily here).
(Listen to an adapted version of this homily for First Communion here).
One of my favorite hobbies—my favorite sport—is running. I have run for many years and enjoy distance running, marathons and racing. Yes, I am a little crazy! It has been said that running is partly physical but mostly mental. I can verify this is true. While physical training is essential, often times it is truly mind over matter in a race.
What most people overlook about distance running—especially for someone who is not a runner or a beginning runner—is the importance of nutrition. I mean, if you are going to run a marathon, you have to drink water and eat something! I can’t tell you how many times I have been ready to stagger off a course and die, when a glass of water, Gatorade and a bite to eat gave me a second wind.
Running has many parallels with life. Sometimes you cruise along, feeling like you could go forever. The sun is out, the wind is at your back and you’re going down hill. At other times, things stink. Muscles are sore, it’s raining, going into the wind or up a hill.
What is interesting for me—I don’t have troubles remembering to eat something or drink water if a run is going poorly—I welcome a break for nourishment! However, if things are going well I may think, “I don’t need to stop for water—I feel great!” But what happens four or five miles later? I’m on the side of the road with a cramp!
Often in life, we treat God the same way. If things are rough—we turn to Him. If life is smooth we may forget to allow God to feed us with His love.
Here’s the point—wherever life finds you at Mass this evening, you must be nourished by the Body and Blood of Christ—the Eucharist. If you are cruising along in life—be nourished! If life has brought sadness, grief or difficulty—be nourished! This is what we celebrate at every Mass, but especially here for Corpus Christi.
Here are two promises of Jesus in two short verses. First, in Matthew 28:20 Jesus promised, “Behold, I am with you even until the end of the age.” Second, in John 6:54: “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last day.” You can take these to the bank! How can you know? Because Jesus gives us his Body and Blood at Mass.
This is true of every Mass! Mass is not just about checking a requirement off a list. It’s not just about seeing family or friends. It’s not just about eating a donut. It’s about the Eucharist. If the homily is lame—the Body and Blood is coming. If Father has to lead the music and he is off key—the Body and Blood is coming!
This weekend I want to challenge you—let’s increase our daily Mass crowd. We are very blessed with a faithful daily Mass crowd and I believe they make up the heart and soul of our parish. Join us—I don’t just work on the weekends! We have daily Mass Monday through Thursday at 8:30. Summer affords many of you more free time whether you are a student, retired or on vacation. This can be a great opportunity to be fed by Jesus’ Body and Blood on a more regular basis.Know you are always welcome at Mass on the weekends—and even daily—to receive Christ’s Body and Blood to nourish you no matter what life throws your way.