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Contents: Volume 2 - Solemnity of the
Body and Blood of Christ






1. -- Lanie LeBlanc OP

2. -- Carol & Dennis Keller

3. -- Brian Gleeson CP

4. --

5. --(Your reflection can be here!)





Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ 2019


   The readings of today remind me that as we partake of the Body and Blood

of Christ, we ask that we become more like the Jesus we receive.  The text from 1 Corinthians tells of the institution of the Eucharist, a gift of Jesus's remembrance and love for all times.  The selection from the Gospel according to Luke relates the good that can come from sharing the Good News through the Eucharist and doing what Jesus Himself did.


If you are like me, you have a few precious items that you cherish, items from family and close friends that spark a memory of their love and remembrance.  Such a memory can never be taken away and is often "re-lived" when the person or item is seen.  So, too, with the Eucharist.


The Eucharist is part of a very familiar and often fast ritual. There is

still hallowed time and

space for private prayer, before and after the Reception, however.  It is the love and remembrance of Jesus then that can flood our minds and hearts ... and sustain us until............


The Eucharist can sustain us through doubts and fears, confrontations and

hardships.  In times of loneliness, Jesus is there within us.  In times of need, there is Encouragement Supreme. In times where boldness is needed, well, there is Jesus.


The nourishment we receive spiritually from the Eucharist may not always

catch our attention.  Wiggly kids, noise around us, and the movement of people can be distracting.  If we take the time to savor the taste of the transformed bread and wine, we can more readily realize that all of our senses have been touched and graced by Jesus.  We have receive ALL, all that we need.


May we approach Jesus in the Eucharist with heightened awareness and with

open hearts and open hands to receive this ALL and then share the gift of Jesus's love and remembrance with all we meet.



Dr. Lanie LeBlanc OP

Southern Dominican Laity





Solemnity of the Body and Blood of the Lord June 23, 2019


Genesis 14:18-20; Responsorial Psalm 110; 1st Corinthians 11:23-26:

Sequence Lauda Sion:

Gospel Acclamation John 6:51; Luke 9:11-17


The first reading from the book of Genesis is a curious selection. Of course there is an offering of bread and wine, the elements that are consecrated into the Body and Blood of the Lord. But the focus in this reading is on the very mysterious Melchizedek. He is king but also, priest in the Jerusalem of Abraham’s time. He appears suddenly without any explanation or genealogy. He just appears as king and priest of the city on Mount Sion named Salem in this narrative. He appears and then disappears except in later Scriptures in Isaiah and in the Letter to the Hebrews.  The etymology of the name Melchizedek means King of Justice. Justice in this context means more than the social order that comes from applying codes of law to relationships among citizens. Justice in the Biblical sense has to do with what is right for humanity. God’s justice is defined as the intention of God that all life has what it needs to flourish. It is more about the common good of each person and all of society than it is about regulating the actions and rights of persons according to human establishment of relationships.


In addition to being named the King of Justice, Melchizedek is the king of

peace. He is king of Salem that is king of peace. He is priest. He blesses, he leads worship of the creator of all that is.  He is priest without beginning. He is priest not by being born into the tribe of priests. And his priesthood has no end. During the ordination liturgy, Catholic priests are consecrated into the order of Melchizedek. They are priests forever whose function is to bless and lead worship.


Paul writing his first letter to the Corinthians presents the ritual of the

Lord’s Supper. He claims it is what he has received from the apostles. It is how the Lord’s Supper is remembered. In the ancient traditions of Hebrew liturgies, remembering God’s interventions and compassionate mercy makes those interventions and work of God for the people real and present yet again. In giving thanks for those interventions, God is called upon to re-enact those events. As the presider calls upon the Holy Spirit to consecrate the gifts brought to the Lord’s Table, the presider re-enacts the actions and words of the Last Supper. The ritual has several parts – taking bread (and wine) looking up to the heavens, blessing, breaking, and giving. This parallels the action of the head of household at the Seder Meal which remembers the release of the Hebrew nation from Egypt’s slavery. In every narrative of the four gospels of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, those five actions are attributed to Jesus actions. Thus, the evangelists want to teach something about the Eucharist when they present the multiplication of loaves and fishes.


The background of this section of Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians is very important. The Corinthians are very much like us. They tended to respect classifications of members of their assemblies according to wealth, power, influence, and education. The Eucharist was celebrated as part of a fraternal meal. They divided themselves, some sitting down to a sumptuous meal while others were kept outside till that feast was finished. In this context Paul writes that before approaching the Table of the Lord each was to examine their behavior. Had they carried a grudge against another: had they disrespected another because of their social status, wealth, or power?  Corinth was a seaport and the diversity of its population was significant.  The Eucharist and its celebration caused a unity among the people that denied the separation of the assembly into language, skin color, national origin, and social status. To deny such unity was to eat and drink the Bread and the Wine to one’s condemnation. Sharing in the Body and the Blood of Jesus the Christ brought each person into the Body of the Christ and in union with each other. To become one with the Body of Christ through the Eucharist and yet hate and seek to harm another who has also become one in the Body of Christ is to condemn oneself.


Luke’s presentation of the miracle of loaves and fishes intends to give

meaning and understanding to the Lord’s supper. The actions of Jesus are the actions of the priest who elevates break and wine, blesses, breaks the bread and gives to those assembled.  Luke tells us Jesus instructs his disciples to seat the people – five thousand men, not counting women and children – in groups of fifty heads of household. With those men were the families of those men. This seems like a strange action. We gain understanding for the groups of fifty when we learn that in the first century Christian communities worshipped in house-churches. Those churches seem to have been limited to fifty households because of the size of the gathering place. These house-churches were where persons gathered for celebration of the good news and the Lord’s Supper would be in groups of fifty.


When Jesus speaks at the Last Supper the words, “do this in memory of me” does this mean that we are instructed to perform this ritual of consecration, of eating, and of sharing? If we limit our understanding to ritual we tend to leave our faith experience of the Eucharist in the building where we gathered. If we are to take the Eucharist out onto the street, to our work, to our recreation, to our homes, then we must broaden our understanding of the Eucharist. The instruction of Jesus of doing this in memory of him is not merely about celebrating the Mass.  Doing in memory of Jesus is to do what Jesus did in the whole of Jesus’ life and ministry. It is for us to heal those who suffer; to teach those seeking truth. It is for us to take on the suffering of others and make it a sacrifice to the Creator of us all. By our living we invite others to enter our Eucharistic community and to live in the Way of Jesus. It is for us to love each other as we would love ourselves. There is no room in the Eucharist for hatred, for violence, for dishonesty, for theft, for murder, and clearly not for the idolatry of the way of the world. Our efforts are to fulfill the prayer of Jesus in John’s gospel at the last meal before his passion. “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are.” The work of Jesus, the Christ, is to unite us together as one in faith, in hope, and in charity. Whatever divides us, whatever polarizes into violence, into hatred, into distrust is from the evil one. We come together to hear the great mysteries of our Faith. We bring our gifts to the altar so that the ordinary of our weeks of family, of work, of play, and of citizenship can be consecrated and made a part of the Body of the Christ. When the ordinary bread and ordinary wine are consecrated by the Holy Spirit into the Body and the Blood of the Body of Christ our gifts become extraordinary. Our human endeavors lose their insignificance and are raised up and serve to build up the Body of the Christ. When we become One in the Body of Christ our lives change and take on the aspects of the covenantal meal offered by Melchizedek to Abraham. We are blessed in the meal with God’s Justice and God’s peace.


We come to the Table of the Lord to share and to receive. We should prepare and participate in this work of the Lord with longing hearts and willing hands. May it be so!


Carol & Dennis Keller (edited by Charlie)







In a nursing home the residents were gathered in the chapel for the feast we are celebrating today, the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ, the feast of the Eucharist. One old woman, wheelchair bound, was wearing two hats. A carer from the home tried to take one off, but the woman clung on tightly to her two hats. In her efforts to tidy up the situation the carer saw that she was now defeated. So she backed off, and let the old lady be.


Perhaps that lady, like the old-time prophets, was acting out a message to the gathered group. Perhaps she was saying: you all should wear two hats, i.e. you all should be your own individual selves - Ann, Bob, Brian, Paul, Carol, Kevin, Anne. Peter, Helen, Erick, Sylvia, whatever - but you should also be what you are as a baptized follower of Jesus - i.e. another Christ.


Speaking of Holy Communion, St Augustine in the 400s in North Africa, said many wise and wonderful things about who we are as members, cells, limbs, of the body of Christ. Among other things he said: 'You are what you have received.' In fact, the first of the signs in which we receive Christ is the sign of bread. In the course of digestion, the bread and the person eating it become one. The bread is assimilated into the body of the one eating. When we receive Christ as our Bread of Life for our journey of life, we become ever more one with him. But Christ is not changed into us, into our bodies. No, we are changed, we are assimilated into Christ's body. It means that we are incorporated into that extension of himself that is his Church, the body of Christians in the world, his body on earth.


Profound implications follow for living our communion, our being joined and bonded to Christ and one another. These could hardly be better put than in the words of St Teresa of Avila – her striking and beautiful words:


            Christ has no body now but yours,

            no hands, no feet on earth but yours.

            Yours are the eyes through which he looks with compassion on this world.

            Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good.

            Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world.

            Yours are the hands. Yours are the feet. Yours are the eyes.

            You are his body.

            Yes, Christ has no body now on earth but yours.


At the Last Supper, in a stunning way, Jesus acted out his care and concern for, his bonding and union with, his followers. He got down on his knees like a slave, went round the group, and washed the feet of his followers, one by one. It's interesting that St John, in his gospel of the Last Supper, does not mention the action of Jesus with the bread and wine. Instead he tells us of the action of Jesus with a basin of water and a towel. In this way John tells us the meaning of both actions of Jesus.  It is all about belonging to one another in the same community of Christ, the community of faith, hope and love, the community which is the Church. It is all about bonding and union with one another. It is all about humbly serving one another. It is all about reaching out with warmth and care, with welcome and hospitality to our neighbour, the neighbour who could hardly be better described than 'any person who needs me now - right here, right now’. As Mother Teresa, now St Teresa of Calcutta, has said so eloquently:


I know you think you should make a trip to Calcutta, but I strongly advise you to save your airfare and spend it on the poor in your own country. It’s easy to love people far away. It’s not always easy to love those who live right next to us. There are thousands of people dying for a bit of bread, but there are thousands more dying for a bit of love or a bit of acknowledgement. The truth is that the worst disease today is not leprosy or tuberculosis; it’s being unwanted, it’s being left out, it’s being forgotten.


Love and service, welcome and hospitality, kindness and compassion, self-forgetfulness and generosity, that’s what it means to follow Jesus, that’s what it means to live his two commands. The one which we hear in the gospel today – ‘Give them something to eat yourselves.’ The one too which we hear in the story of the Last Supper every time we pray the Eucharistic Prayer: ‘Do this in remembrance of me.’


"Brian Gleeson CP" <>









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