CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 17 August 2019

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We are the Body of Christ

SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST Holy Body and Blood of Christ is not merely a liturgical celebration of the Blessed Sacrament. It challenges everyone who believes in Christ to be alter Christus—another Christ. St. Paul makes it categorical when he says, “Now you are Christ’s body and individually parts of it” (1 Corinthians 12: 27). Hence, Corpus Christi Sunday is the celebration of our own identity as part of the Body of Christ.
 
What does it mean to be the Body of Christ in the world today? What must I do to make Christ present through my life in the family, in the community and in the parish? What difference does it make to be part of Christ’s body while I continue to live in the midst of so many who do not believe in him? 
 
These are some of the questions that could help one to stay focused on one’s identity as a part of the Body of Christ. 
 
When Jesus had chosen his disciples, he also granted them the astonishing power to do what he himself did and preached. Thus they went around “healing the sick, driving out demons and telling everyone that the kingdom of God was at hand.” Today the Church, the body of Christ, carries on the same mission. 
 
Since you are part of the Body of Christ, when you touch someone, Christ is touching them; your touch is God’s touch! When you love them, Christ is loving them because the Body of Christ is not just the body of Jesus but is also the body of believers. When you forgive them Christ is forgiving them because your touch is the Church’s touch. 
 
Father Ron Rolheiser provides a powerful insight into the beautiful mission of Christians: If someone whom you love strays from the Church in terms of faith practice and morality, as long as you continue to love that person and hold them in love and forgiveness, they are being held to the Body of Christ and are being forgiven by God because your touch is Christ’s touch! 
 
It is a common experience in a society such as Hong Kong that God-fearing parents have children who no longer go to church and no longer pray, or parents or spouses who no longer respect your faith. What can you do? 
 
The Solemnity of Corpus Christi is a reminder to continue to love and forgive them because through you, they are receiving love and forgiveness from God.
 
In human history, God became man in the person of Jesus. That God continues to be present among his people not only through his Word and the Eucharist, but also through all who sincerely believe in the person of Jesus. 
 
Hence, when we say, God became man we also profess, “I am part of that God, who took the human form.” The incredible power and mercy that came into our world in Jesus is still with us, at least if we choose to activate it. We are the Body of Christ. What Jesus did for us, we can do for each other. 
 
It sounds too good to be true, yet that is the truth!  When I speak to someone, do they feel that Christ is talking to them? When I touch, do they feel that Christ is touching them? jose