Food for the Journey (Homily for Corpus Christi)

Fr. Joel Homilies

Food for the Journey (8:15)

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi). We always ate well when my Mom was out of town. She was sure to prepare meals in advance to keep us going until she got back. Why did Jesus institute the Eucharist before he died and rose? He did it to give us food for the journey.

Our walking pilgrimage starts on Monday. Last year I told the pilgrims to bring bags of trail mix, but that was a mistake — God provided all the food that we needed along the way. God is always feeding and taking care of us. The Eucharist is not the only presence of Christ on earth; nor is the Eucharist the ultimate presence of Christ. It is a dependable presence of Christ. Through the Eucharist we know that God is with us, and He will give us the strength to keep walking.

Where is this journey leading us? To communion with God. We receive the Body of Christ into our body. The closest analogy to communion is the physical intimacy between a husband and a wife. They give their bodies to each other, but the physical sign is meant to lead them to communion of heart and mind. In the same way, we receive Christ’s Body and we give him ourselves. The physical sign is meant to promote spiritual Communion, a union of  hearts and minds with God. We can’t go through the outward sign of receiving communion unless are hearts are ready to receive Christ and give Him ourselves.

Ultimately, we are fed not by bread and wine, but by knowing we are loved, and loving Him in return — this is the food that keeps us walking on our journey to heaven.

(10 Jun 2012)