HomeCommentaryThe Living Bread

The Living Bread

Reflection for the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

Blessed are those who beyond the form of bread, can plainly see “the living bread from heaven” who gives himself “for the life of the world.” 

Blessed are those who beyond his inexplicable stillness, can deeply sense the silent love of the Beloved, for only such a love can enable pure and selfless charity to fill their hearts, for only such a love can enable genuine and compassionate justice to emanate from their hands. 

Blessed are those who are “experiencing want”, for they are being humbled in acknowledging their need for the Spirit who provides. 

Blessed are those who are continuously being “tested” and being revealed for who they truly are, for they will become much less proud of themselves, thereby obeying and remembering the God who cares. 

Blessed are those then, who detach themselves and refuse to see the fleeting pleasures of this earthly life, for such a love-centered only on the loving of the self, is doomed to a dissatisfaction and disappointment which will never be fulfilled, to an incurable despair which can only lead to a lonely death.

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Blessed are those who are determined to change and be changed by the Beloved from selfishness to selflessness, from pride and anxiety to humility and joy, from death and despair to life and hope. 

Blessed are those who persevere in transforming from a life of working for self-gratification, to a life of toil and prayer, not in the service only of oneself but of all.  Blessed are those who have ‘died from their old selves’ chained to restless cravings for possessions, prestige, and power, and have been ‘reborn to their new selves’, free and secure in the bosom of the Mystery.

Blessed are those many, though diverse, who are and remain to be unified in one body, through the “one bread” that is shared by all.  Blessed are those living in such a communion, partaking of and feasting with the Beloved who strengthens and reinforces it. 

Blessed are those who struggle to protect and defend in the name of Christ, this unity-in-diversity, this fraternity-among-equals, this community of sustainable prosperity and peace.

God must not be permitted to become merely an illusion of goodness or a mirage of benevolence. 

The absence of his presence is meant to critically examine the firmness of our call to true faith in his divine omniscience and providence, and our resistance to false faith in our faulty concupiscence and ego; it is intended to challenge our comprehension of and trust in the “living bread.”

Unfortunately for the less discerning, God has an ambiguous existence, and for others, has no existence at all.  The Spirit must not be allowed to become someone who “should be there when you need him, and shouldn’t be there when you don’t.” 

The creature cannot become blind to the Creator, or else, creation cannot continue.  We must encourage each other to perceive him as a continuous reality, an undeniable Truth, for the Eucharist is the fuel of our forever, and the Mass the engine of our eternity. 

Brother Jess Matias is a professed brother of the Secular Franciscan Order. He serves as minister of the St. Pio of Pietrelcina Fraternity at St. Francis of Assisi Parish in Mandaluyong City, coordinator of the Padre Pio Prayer Groups of the Capuchins in the Philippines, and prison counselor and catechist for the Bureau of Jail Management and Penology.

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