June 6, 2021: Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ
Mark 14:12-16, 22-26
On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, when they sacrificed the Passover lamb, Jesus’ disciples said to him, “Where do you want us to go and prepare for you to eat the Passover?” He sent two of his disciples and said to them, “Go into the city and a man will meet you, carrying a jar of water. Follow him. Wherever he enters, say to the master of the house, ‘The Teacher says, “Where is my guest room where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?”’ Then he will show you a large upper room furnished and ready. “Make the preparations for us there.” The disciples then went off, entered the city, and found it just as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover. While they were eating, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, gave it to them, and said, “Take it; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, and they all drank it. He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed for many. Amen, I say to you, I shall not drink again the fruit of the vine until the day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.” Then, after singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olive.
Surprisingly, Mark provides more detail about Jesus’ role in the preparation for the Passover meal than the words Jesus spoke that night. Words that Jesus came prepared to say even if his disciples were not yet ready to hear them. A gift they were not yet ready to receive. Their own transformation would take time, just as ours does.
Do we personally prepare for our participation in our liturgy? Without preparation our participation can become routine and our communion something we just do at Mass.
On this feast celebrating the Body and Blood truth of God’s love for us, let us prepare ourselves to hear these words again by being fully mindful of each part of our liturgy. Pay close attention to our many symbols, our words, responses, physical actions, readings, hymns and prayers. And at our reception of the Eucharist, let us ask for what it is we need to be the gift of Christ’s presence to others. Then, do this at every Eucharistic celebration.
This week, be attentive to the needs of those around you. Is someone in need of your heart, ears, voice, arms or legs? Do what you can to meet those needs.