Third Sunday of Easter (C)
“It is the Lord” (Jn 21:7), the disciple exclaimed. Here Jesus would invite His disciples to a meal of what He Himself provided for and of what they have worked for at His command. He will also provide for the needs of those who listen to Him, obey His commands, and remain in His love.
He continually supported the first Christians, who “devoted themselves to the teaching of the apostles and to the communal life, to the breaking of the bread and to the prayers…. they would sell their property and possessions and divide them among all according to each one’s need…. Every day they devoted themselves to meeting together in the temple area and to breaking bread in their homes. They ate their meals with exultation and sincerity of heart, praising God and enjoying favor with all the people” (Acts 2:42-47).
He is alive in the Church today; and coming to partake of Jesus does not cease when the Mass ends. This meal with Him continues in our daily responsibilities and relationships, in our endeavors and plans, and in our growth in all aspects of human life. Our relationship with Jesus grows especially in our never-ending obedience to His commands. It will also be because of love for Jesus that we will recognize Him in any situation that we are in. As we all belong to the Body of Christ, we recognize Him in one another and in our service to the Church, and proclaim: “It is the Lord.” In the end of time, we hope to hear Him say: “Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world…. Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me” (Mt 25:34-40).
Yes, it is the Lord, as:
– when the priest consecrates the bread and wine, and proclaims, “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” he brings down God to our celebration and to the whole church. He can live up to his calling to holiness and to service of God’s people;
– when parents can say silently with the priest at consecration time “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” and partake of Jesus in Holy communion, then meaningfully and full of grace can they offer themselves to one another in the intimacy of their relationship, in their worries and difficulties, in joys and successes, in building their families and in rearing their children;
– when the youth learn to say silently with the priest, “This is my Body….This is My Blood,” and partake of the Lamb of God, then in their youthfulness, they can seek His Will and grow in wisdom and grace;
– when religious men and women learn to say silently with the priest, “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” and partake of the Lamb of God, they grow in holiness and wisdom with Jesus and Mary, and their life and apostolate are spent gratefully to lead people to God;
– when working people learn to say silently with the priest, “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” and partake of the Jesus Holy communion, then they can honestly live by what they earn, and proclaim their oneness with God’s creation and with the joy of the Holy Family;
– whenever the sick, the elderly, the shut-in and the suffering learn to silently proclaim, “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” and when able, to partake of the Eucharist, then their suffering become one with the suffering of Jesus for their growth in holiness and for the sanctification and salvation of the world;
– when children are taught to celebrate the Eucharist, and when ready, to partake of Him in Holy communion, they grow in the love of the Eucharist and the Church, as well as in the love for prayer and the Scriptures;
– when public officials learn to say silently with the priest at consecration time “This is my Body…. This is My Blood,” and partake of Jesus in Holy communion, then their words become meaningful, their service selfless and their office worthy of leaders whose authority comes from above and chosen to be instruments of development and peace.
We celebrate the Eucharist for one reason: It is the Lord. We renew our commitment to the Body of Jesus, the Church. We continue to adore Him, despite our fears, for our courage to live our faith will have its strength and fruit only in Him, who invites us to a meal that strengthens us in every situation of joy or uncertainty. Wherever we are He asks us to cast our nets of honesty and zeal for our faith one more time, and we will certainly encounter Jesus. With Mother Mary, who learned to adore Jesus, we continue to proclaim our oneness in His Church, and respond to His call to holiness, for definitely, it is the Lord.