The Jesuit Father Baby Mupungu introduces us to meditation with the readings of the solemnity of the Blessed Sacrament of the liturgical year C.
First reading: Gn 14, 18-20
Psalm: Ps 109 (110), 1, 2, 3, 4
Second reading: 1 Cor 11, 23-26
Gospel: Lk 9, 11b-17
Dear brothers and sisters,
On this Sunday of the Blessed Sacrament, the Church invites us to meditate on the great mystery of our faith: the Eucharist, the essential of our Christian life. In celebrating the Blessed Sacrament, we give thanks to God for the gift of his Son to sinful humanity; we proclaim his death on the cross, we celebrate his resurrection and we await in glory his coming.
Today’s readings are full of symbols that make us plunge into the historical richness, into the theological and spiritual depth of this great mystery. Already in the first reading we are presented with an emblematic figure: Melchizedek, king of justice, king of peace, priest of the most high, who offers bread and wine; he blesses Abram, our ancestor in the faith, and Abram gives him his tithe. An extraordinary scene of offering and communion. Melchizedek is an enigmatic character, who has no father, no mother, no genealogy, no beginning or end for his life, but remains a priest in perpetuity. His name brings us into the distant depths of the mystery we are celebrating today, that of communion with God. It makes us taste the flavors of eternity of the presence of God in our life.
In the second reading, Saint Paul reminds us of the content of his message, of his Gospel, which is the proclamation of Jesus, dead and risen for us; the announcement of Jesus who gives himself as the supreme sacrifice for our redemption. The Christ whom Saint Paul received and transmitted to his brothers is the one who offered himself completely out of love for his friends, and who continues to give himself to us every day in the Eucharist. It is this Christ who, in the Gospel, feeds an immense hungry crowd. But before feeding her, he speaks to her of the reign of God and heals those who need it. Saint Luke shows us that Jesus gives himself to those who need him. This is the whole meaning of the Eucharist. It is a sacrament intended for those who need God, those who live with their hands stretched out towards God, their eyes raised to heaven from which comes true help and liberation from what prevents them from enjoying the identity of child of God.
If Melchizedek is presented as a priest of the most high, as a priest, and if Saint Paul reminds us of the meaning of the paschal mystery, Saint Luke, for his part, presents Jesus to us as a priest par excellence, who not only offers bread and wine , but is itself the sacrifice, the offering acceptable to God for our salvation. Thus, whoever eats of his body, drinks of his blood and listens to his word, has eternal life.
Today’s Solemnity invites us to admire the greatness of the Eucharist as nourishment for our spiritual growth and to become Eucharist ourselves for others, a gift for our brothers and sisters. Around us there are so many people who are suffering; many thirst and hunger for God, for the God of Jesus Christ. May the Lord rekindle in us the ardent desire to enter into a relationship with Him in order to obtain life. May he make us a people eager to do good, that is to say attentive to the needs of those around us, to be charitable through good actions of justice, peace and comfort, and to promote social friendship and universal brotherhood.
Let us also pray for our priests, our pastors who offer the Eucharistic sacrifice for our sanctification. May the Lord preserve them from all evil, and sanctify them in truth that their words and deeds may be for the building up of the people of God.
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Meditation on the Solemnity of the Blessed Sacrament: “Jesus nourishes us with his life” – Vatican News
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