June 22, 2014

The Gospel Today 

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi)

John 6:51-58

Jesus said to the Jewish crowds:
“I am the living bread that came down from heaven;
whoever eats this bread will live forever;
and the bread that I will give
is my flesh for the life of the world.”

The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying,
“How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
Jesus said to them,
“Amen, amen, I say to you,
unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood,
you do not have life within you.
Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood
has eternal life,
and I will raise him on the last day.
For my flesh is true food,
and my blood is true drink.
Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood
remains in me and I in him.
Just as the living Father sent me
and I have life because of the Father,
so also the one who feeds on me
will have life because of me.
This is the bread that came down from heaven.
Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died,
whoever eats this bread will live forever.”

Reflection (Sem. Edgar Calma):

     In the field of Psychology, Abraham Harold Maslow, an American psychologist and a well known for his “Hierarchy of Needs” asserted that food and drink are some of the basic physiological needs of man in order for him to survive. What motivates man to do something in life is in line with the fulfillment of these basic needs… the need for food and drink. He said that in the event that these needs are fulfilled, a person will seek to satisfy the next level in the hierarchy of needs until he reaches self-fulfillment.  It is a process of reasonably satisfying lower level basic needs and eventually moving to meet the highest level which is self-actualization.

     Today, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi). The Gospel reminds us that Christ is the living bread from heaven and whoever will eat His flesh and drink His blood will live forever. During the celebration of the Holy Eucharist, we are always reminded of this great sacrifice that our Lord Jesus Christ did for humanity. When the simple bread and wine offered in the altar of the Lord becomes His Most Holy Body and Blood that will not only nourish our basic physiological needs, but more importantly our spiritual needs. To be nourished by Christ means living our lives with and for Christ and Christ living in us…will be the highest level of self-fulfillment and self-actualization.

     As we reflect on the Gospel, let us take this opportunity to ask ourselves… what are the things that sustain my life? Who is the source of my fulfillment and provides self-satisfaction?  Am I do engross in satisfying my basic physiological needs? Or do I also give priority in fulfilling my spiritual needs?  The modern world can offer greater things for us to meet the highest level of self-actualization in life such as personal fulfilment, success, and power.  But the greater challenge for us is to be able to see Christ in our journey towards our self-actualization. It is only when we make Christ as the center of our personal fulfilment that inner peace and self-transcendence will be fully realized. As we journey in this life, may the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ sustain and nourish our spiritual longing for us to live and grow in holiness.

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