2cornucopias

Most Holy

In 13 Today's Church on 2017/05/26 at 12:00 AM

 

  • On the Feasts of the Ascension and Pentecost, I spoke about the divine indwelling, i.e., that through the Sacrament of Baptism, the Holy Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, comes to dwell supernaturally within our souls.
  • This divine indwelling is a special intimacy all the baptized share with God, so long as we remain in a state of grace. For mortal sin robs our souls of our Lord’s supernatural presence, and it can only be restored through the grace of a good confession.
  • Of course we would never want to lose this divine indwelling through sin, even though it can be restored in the confessional, for the divine indwelling is a special gift – a gift enabling us to know God as He truly is, and thereby love Him as He desires to be loved.
  • Because we have been gifted with our triune’s Lord supernatural presence within our souls, we are called to live lives of faith, hope, and charity. In fact, we know from God Himself that His greatest desire is for His creatures to love and worship Him.
  • And because our Lord has commanded that we worship Him and love Him above all else, it’s important that we love and worship Him well! As Catholics, we do this primarily through the offering of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
  • As I mentioned last Sunday, at Mass we are transported to Calvary, where our Lord’s redemptive sacrifice there is re-presented to us in an unbloody fashion, and ordinary bread and wine are changed into our Lord’s Body and Blood for our consumption.
  • Stop and ponder these mysteries for a moment!
  • In His benevolence the Lord of all creation comes to dwell within our souls through theSacrament of Baptism.
  • If we forfeit His supernatural presence in our souls through mortal sin, in His mercy He iswilling to pardon us and come back to us through the Sacrament of Reconciliation.
  • And in His great love, our Lord is humble enough to give us His flesh and blood as true food and true drink in the Eucharist. As St. John tells us today, “whoever eats [His] flesh and drinks [His]blood has eternal life, and [God] will raise him on the last day.”
  • My brothers and sisters, is there any love that can compare with this love?
  • While the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is our central and most important form of worship, thereare other ways to worship our Lord. There are other ways to love our Lord!
  • I know that many of you have participated these past few days in our annual 40 Hourscelebration in honor of our Eucharistic Lord.
  • These annual 40 hours of Eucharistic adoration, as well as the 33 hours of Adoration we havehere every week, are an opportunity for us to be with God and thank Him for His love. They arean opportunity for us to love God in return.
  • So often when we think about our spiritual lives, so many of us worry about how close we are toGod. So many people tend to consider their spiritual lives only from their own vantage point andfor their own benefit.
  • But do we ever truly consider how close God is to us – regardless of how we may feel? Do weever really consider His undying love for us? Do we ever just consider God in Himself andmarvel at Him in wonder and awe?
  • In our decadent western society, we have been conditioned to think first and foremost aboutourselves. We are told that we need to take care of ourselves, that we have to do what’s best for ourselves, and we are all too quick to assert our personal rights.
  • We can see the evil fruits of our decadent selfishness most appallingly in our society’s willingness to abort unborn children for the sake of convenience.
  • Our society as a whole has become so selfish that we can think we can even change the nature of things inviolable, like marriage and the marital act, so that people can be free to pursue whatever form of gratification they desire – even if it be deviant in nature, detrimental to their well-being, and devoid of all dignity.
  • Demanding rights to self-expression and self-gratification, we have come to believe that we can define reality for ourselves and demand that others respect, honor, and even celebrate our selfish and depraved choices.
  • My brothers and sisters, this type of thinking and acting – which has become all too common in our society – is not only crazy, but it’s antithetical to a life of holiness and the proper practice of our Catholic Faith. This is why we need the Eucharist.
  • When we understand the Eucharist for what it really is: the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ – and not merely a symbol of His body and blood, then we can begin to understand what a tremendous gift it is!
  • It’s not simply that our Lord is giving us food and drink. He’s giving us His very self through an act of self-sacrifice! Jesus died for us so that we might live eternally!
  • Through the regular and worthy reception of His Body and Blood in the Eucharist, we are given all the grace we need to stay on the steep and rocky path to Heaven.
  • When we receive Holy Communion worthily, all of our venial sins are forgiven, we are fortified against future mortal sins, and our bonds with Christ, His Church and one another are strengthened so that we truly become one body in Christ.
  • It truly is the Bread come down from Heaven! It is a completely gratuitous gift!
  • But while there are tremendous graces to be found in receiving Holy Communion worthily, thereare tremendous graces as well in coming before our Lord in Adoration!
  • When we adore our Lord in Eucharistic Adoration, Jesus gives us a deeper understanding of Hissacrificial love, for the Eucharist is the great sign of our Lord’s self sacrifice; it is the great signof His love.
  • When we adore our Lord regularly, we begin to desire to imitate His sacrificial love and drawcloser to Him.
  • Indeed, adoration He teaches us that true joy and peace come not from seeking to satisfyourselves, but in humble union with Him!
  • In our humble union with Him, not only do we grow in faith in God’s goodness and come todesire Him more ardently as our final end, we are filled with the desire to love God by servingothers. True adoration always leads us to charity.
  • In other words, when we make a habit of adoring our Lord in the Eucharist, we learn to makethat fundamental shift from focusing always on ourselves to focusing on God and others. And then, not only do we grow in holiness, but we experience true joy – a joy that this world with all its pleasures can never give.
  • My brothers and sisters, as we celebrate this marvelous feast of Corpus Christi, may we each be given the grace to turn away from all selfishness and turn toward God in humble adoration.
  • May we show Him proper thanks for this great gift of the Eucharist by putting the needs ofothers before our own.
  • O Sacrament most holy, O Sacrament divine, all praise and all thanksgiving be every moment Thine!

 

© Reverend Timothy Reid

Fr. Reid is the pastor of St. Ann Catholic Church, Charlotte, NC

Homilies from June 17, 2012 onward have audio.
To enable the audio, lease go directly to Fr. Reid’s homily homilies and select the matching date.

Link to Homilies:
http://stanncharlotte.org/content/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&id=8&Itemid=61

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