And the Word Became Eucharistic Bread
There is a video by Fr. Fernando Armellini with English subtitles
commenting on today’s Gospel reading:
Caress is a way of saying to the other: you are my confidant and I’m glad you trust me. But if the other draws back, you feel rejected or misunderstood. The handshake, the flowers, the lighted lamp to the patron saint express feelings, emotions, and moods that no words can tell. The blowing out of candles, followed by the friends’ applause and song of greetings mark the climax of the birthday party.
Gestures alone are seemingly illogical. The ritual, even if different from the positivist reasoning, is loaded with meanings and messages.
How can friends manifest their joy at our birth, if they were not there when we gave out the first cry? That day, long gone, cannot be reached, but it is possible to replay it … through the ritual. The wind that blows out the candles cancels our years, brings us back to the time of birth, replays our first breath and offers the opportunity to celebrate our coming into the world. It would not make sense to just eat the birthday cake.
A human being is of the earth, is closely related to other living beings and material creatures with which he is called to build a growing harmony and feels a deep need to make the invisible and divine things concrete, perceptible by the senses.
The sacraments are God’s answer to this need.
At the Last Supper, Jesus instituted the rite with which to make present his supreme act of love, the total gift of life. The Word of God, bread from heaven, now can really be assimilated, not only with the mind and heart but also through the sacrament. Even with this visible sign we, as long as we are pilgrims in this world, will always be hungry.
To internalize the message, we repeat:
“One does not live on bread alone, but also of the Word made bread.”