THURSDAY OF THE THIRD WEEK OF EASTER, APRIL 30, 2020
A Gospel according to John 6:44-51
Jesus said to the crowds: “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day. It is written in the prophets:
They shall all be taught by God.
Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me. Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. 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.”
REFLECTION: "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever."
This week we have been reading Chapter 6 of the Gospel of St. John.
All these readings talk about the Eucharist, the bread of life, and how without it we won't have eternal life.
For the last 8 weeks we have been in quarantine; we have not received Our Lord for many, many days.
During this fasting of Our Lord, many have learned to love Him more.
By this fasting itself. By longing for Him.
Just like when people start dating, there are reservations on how much to give from oneself to the other. And I am not talking in the physical sense. We reveal who we are little by little every time we meet. We long to see each other soon, and talk to the other about what happened when we were separated, and also listen to what the other person has been going through during this time as well.
A relationship is formed, and the bonds that hold couples together grow stronger. Until one day, God willing, they reach the altar in Holy Matrimony.
In a similar way the Holy Eucharist has not been available to the laity in all this time. And at the same time neither malls or sporting events are open, and restaurants and bars have no dine-in. We have had the time to create a small domestic church. We have decorated our tv sets with candles, images of saints, and crucifixes . We now have time to pray the rosary, read the Bible, and learn about our faith.
We have been making room for Our Lord. We have started to learn more about Him, and not take Him for granted.
We are forming a true relationship with Him. We have started a true intentional journey of faith.
We await for the day we can receive Him again. Maybe even with more love and expectation than when we were preparing for First Holy Communion.
Pretty soon, some churches will have public masses again. The obligation of attending, I think, will still be dispensed, specially for those who are most vulnerable to the pandemic. And social distancing ruling will still apply.
What will your first reaction be when you enter your parish again? What will you feel when you go back to confession, and receive Our Lord, in body and soul again?
The bread of life that is Jesus Himself will be waiting for us. Will we be more in love with Him?
Let's prepare our souls, and let's never take Him for granted again.
God bless y'all!