The Body and Blood of Christ reminds us that Jesus, at the Last Supper, took the bread, blessed and broke it and gave it to the disciples, telling them, “Take and eat. This is my body.” Then he took the cup of wine, gave thanks and gave it to them saying, “This is my blood, the blood of the covenant to be poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. Do this in remembrance of me.“ Matthew, Mark and Luke each tell us the same. John tells us that Jesus said, “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him.”
Each time we participate in the Mass and receive the body and blood of Jesus, we are reminded that Jesus remains in us and we in Him. What a privilege! How often do we think about this as we receive communion? Each of us is a part of Jesus and part of a community of this followers who are called to live in love, to spread love, to be on with God.
Today we also celebrate Memorial Day, a day when we thank God for the freedoms we have in our country and remember those who gave and still give their lives that we might enjoy these freedoms.
As I think about these two reasons to celebrate this weekend, I need to ask myself, what am I doing today to give love and life to others? Am I being part of that community that lives as Jesus did, gives as Jesus did, and loves as Jesus loves? Do I give of myself as the veterans have given so that life can be better for others? When I think about our community here at Nativity, I think we do that well most of the time. I see how well we respond to one another at times of need. We also celebrate with each other the joys of our lives. When something needs to be done for the parish, the response is always great, but are there areas where we could do better? Do I reach out to others that are not yet part of our community? Do I invite others to become part of our community, to celebrate with us each weekend? How do I respond to those who are not like me?
It is my hope that each of us will see being part of this Nativity community important enough to participate in the retreat June 11th, at Sacred Heart Church. During that day, together, we can celebrate what has been good from the past, and share our dreams for the future that could make us better. If you cannot make the day of retreat because of other commitments, share your ideas and dreams with someone who is coming, so they can share them with those there.
Nativity is special today because we worked together in the past. We say “We are here to stay.” That can only happen if each one of us listens to those around us, works together for the common good, and willingly does our part to spread love and live to others.