Weekend Reflections for 1/25/19
The Privilege of Being the Body of Christ
In the second reading for this Sunday, from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, he reminds us what it means for us to be members of the body of Christ. Our union with one another in Christ comes from our baptism with its gift of the Holy Spirit into our lives. Each of us has received this gift and because of this gift each of us has a distinctive role as a member of the body of Christ.
We received this gift and grace from Christ for the benefit of one another. The ultimate goal of this gift is the building up of the body of Christ so that one day all of creation will be renewed in Him. To say that this is a great mystery is certainly an understatement. But as with all faith mysteries, while we can never fully understand it, we can nevertheless continue to delve in the mystery and appreciate it more and more.
Jesus has told us that he came that we might have life and have it to the full. Becoming one with him as his body is for me one of the wonderful aspects of this fullness. It is the fulfillment of his prayer:
I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. (John 17, 22-23)
It brings to mind our Lord revealing to Augustine what takes place as we are nourished by the Eucharist: in partaking of the Eucharist we do not change Jesus into ourselves, but rather He is changing us into Himself. As members of the Body of Christ, the Eucharist is the essential nourishment for our role in it.
May we ever long for and be grateful for so great a gift.
Jim Blumeyer, S.J.