A few days ago, a January 15, 1995 video appeared in my FB page, showing then Pope now Saint John Paul II in Manila for the World Youth Day. The video showed about 4 million people attending the closing Mass, singing together, “Tell the World of His Love”. It was such a beautiful sight: the millions of people in attendance, while so many others still watching in their own homes all over the country and the world. Try singing the song with that crowd and I’m sure your eyes will be moist and your heart glowing with inspiration. If we can be touched that deeply, how much more the realization of Jesus’ love for us, the theme of that music, as manifested in His offering of His Body and Blood as nourishment of our souls.
As the past Sundays talk about the miracle in the desert, where God provided the manna for the Israelites, and then the Gospel about the miracle where Jesus fed the five thousand; yet all of these pale in comparison to the number of miracles happening every day, when the Bread and Wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ in the countless Masses celebrated all over the world. It is a treasure we all should know and cherish as the Church reveals to us the real worth and value of the Holy Eucharist. Jesus is the Living Bread who came down from Heaven, and He has promised us Eternal Life if we partake of it.
Yes, while reading through the Gospel today, the discourse of St. John seems to be the emphasis in the past weeks and for a couple more of Sundays to come, telling us the importance of the Body and Blood of Jesus. It is a not-so-easy topic considering that John talks about what is Eternal, Heaven, and God the Father, among others. These are topics that are difficult to explain, more so understand. But for one who has faith in God, there’s no need for an explanation, believing in it is enough.
Thus, given all these, now is the perfect time to ask ourselves, whether we are allowing God to draw us in, and do we embrace Jesus as our Lord and Savior, and let Him feed our souls? Or do we neglect it, get lost in the anxieties and worries of everyday life, so that He just gets pass us unnoticed? Maybe we should take heart in the advice to slow down, being mindful of what’s happening around us, so that as the Psalmist says, we can ‘Taste and see the goodness of the Lord!
‘I am the Living Bread that came down from Heaven, says the Lord; whoever eats this bread will live forever.’ (cf. Jn. 6: 51)