Fr. Steve’s homily (08/16/2015)

Our Savior promised to remain with his Church “until the end of the age.” He has fulfilled this promise is the topic of today’s Gospel passage: the Holy Eucharist, which we celebrate during every Mass and receive through Holy Communion.
To keep our human nature alive, we need natural food; to go without eating is to languish and die. But by our baptism we are no longer merely children of natural parents; we are also sons and daughters of God himself, sharers in his divine life. To sustain that supernatural life, then, we need supernatural food. Christ himself is that food.
• Just as children receive life and existence from their parents’ flesh and blood at the moment of conception, so we receive Christian life and existence from Christ’s flesh and blood in the Eucharist.
• During the Mass, when the ordained priest, in obedience to Christ’s own command to “do this in remembrance of me,” pronounces the words of consecration (“this is my body… this is my blood”) over the bread and the wine, those humble substances are changed into Christ’s own body and blood.
• This change is known by theologians as “transubstantiation,” the transformation of the substance of bread and wine into the substance of Christ’s body and blood.
• And since Christ is alive today, residing physically in heaven, wherever his body and blood are really present, he himself must also be present.
Thus, the Church has always taught, and the faithful have always believed, that in the Eucharist, under the appearances of bread and wine, our God is truly and sacramentally present in his body, blood, soul, and divinity.
The Eucharist is God’s most amazing gift to us. Through the incarnation, Jesus, the Word of God, lowered himself to our level, out of love, by taking to himself our human nature. Through the Eucharist, he raises us up to his level, by nourishing us with his divine nature. The Eucharist is par excellence the sacrament of Christ’s love. Only a heart that is a blazing furnace of love could concoct such a wild scheme to enter into unparalleled intimacy with us.
Christ knows we can’t go it alone, and so he goes with us, through the Eucharist.

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