WE, who believe in Christ, of course, know that this Bread of Life is Christ himself who, even if he died and resurrected on the third day and ascended into heaven, continues to be with us with his living presence, offering us the merits of his redemptive work and giving us his very own self as the imperishable food that brings us to our ultimate state, eternal life in heaven.
He does not leave us only with some picture or souvenir or symbol. He is truly and really with us even while he sits at the right hand of the Father in heaven. And he accompanies us in our earthly sojourn, giving us the ultimate means we need to tackle whatever we may encounter in this life.
Itâ€™s a madness of love to which we have to correspond as best as we could. God himself gives us the grace in abundance to enable us to correspond to that love. We should not be scared of the tremendous prospect before us. But itâ€™s up to us if we choose to love him or not. We should do everything to make use of what God is making available to us.
We are told that if we are generous with God, God will even be more generous with us, for he cannot be outdone in generosity. He assures us that whatever little we give to him with our whole heart will yield us a hundredfold. Itâ€™s always good to keep this divine assurance in mind.
That is why we have always been encouraged to develop and grow in our Eucharistic piety. We are prodded to know and appreciate more deeply the real nature, character and purpose of the Holy Eucharist, studying and assimilating the relevant doctrine, actively participating at Mass, receiving Christ worthily in Holy Communion, paying pious visits to the Blessed Sacrament, etc.
But we should not stop there. Being the Bread of Life, Christ actually is showing us how to deal with all the situations, issues, challenges and trials that we can encounter in life. And we have to be quick to discern his will and ways.
We have to be wary of a subtle tendency to convert our Eucharistic piety into something too personal as to be individualistic. An authentic Eucharistic piety would increasingly involve us in the issues and affairs of the world.
After all, God by becoming man and by remaining with us the Holy Eucharist certainly would want us to engage the world as fully as possible for the sake of God. And it is the things of this world that provide us with the occasions and ways to develop our love for God and for others.
To be sure, to be Christ-like as we ought to be, we should see to it that our piety and our whole spiritual life is not confined only to prayers and spiritual isolation. It has to be actively involved in the things of the world, even if we happen to be physically alone in a given moment or even for lifetime.
That is why we have to develop a special sensitivity to any development in the world, monitoring the different events in the various fields, and then clarifying things, sanctifying them and reconciling them with Godâ€™s will and providence.
Though each one of us can only have a particular take on things based on oneâ€™s circumstances, competence, etc., we all should try our best to work in solidarity with everybody else so that we can move toward our ultimate common good, making use of our temporal affairs and concerns.
In our Eucharistic piety, whether we are attending Mass, receiving Christ in Holy Communion, or visiting the Blessed Sacrament, we should always ask our Lord what things of the world, what temporal concerns does He like us to get involved in, and how should we handle them.
At the moment, there are many worldly concerns and issues that are practically screaming for human and Christian clarification. They now appear to be in the hands of ideologues with theories and principles that may appear convenient, practical and popular but are actually dehumanizing.
We should not be indifferent to this development. Rather, we have to be active in upholding the truth that comes from our human nature and ultimately from God, our Creator and Father.
Our Eucharistic piety, our recourse to the Bread of Life, should sharpen our sense of awareness and concern over the issues in the areas of politics, social life, entertainment, human sexuality, and faith and religion itself, etc.Â Â (By Fr. Roy Cimagala)