This Sunday we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi). It is a Solemnity for what greater gift can one have than to receive Jesus Christ Himself, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity? St. Thomas writes of this inestimable gift: –
“O banquet most precious! O banquet most admirable! O banquet overflowing with every spiritual delicacy!”
This solemnity celebrates three feasts in one, i.e. the feast of the Eucharistic sacrifice, the feast of the Sacrament of the Eucharist and the feast of the Real Presence of Jesus in this Sacrament. Corpus Christi is a doctrinal feast established for three purposes:
1) to give God collective thanks for Christ’s abiding presence with us in the Eucharist and to honour Him there;
2) to instruct the people in the Mystery, Faith and devotion surrounding the Eucharist, and
3) to teach us to appreciate and make use of the great gift of the Holy Eucharist, both as a Sacrament and as a sacrifice.”
“Eucharistic theologians explain the Real Presence called transubstantiation: the entire substance of bread and wine is changed into the entire substance of the risen living, and glorified Body and Blood of Christ, retaining only the ‘accidents’ (taste, colour, shape) of bread and wine.”
When access to our Churches comes about how wonderful it will be to again receive the Lord Jesus in Holy Communion. How wonderful also to be able to adore Him in the Blessed Sacrament, especially when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed upon the Altar in a Monstrance.
Probably our fast from receiving the Lord Jesus has intensified our longing. I do hope it has for you.
Sr. Rosaleen Shaw OP