Be One in Christ
That all may be one: like you, Father, you are in me and I in you, may they also be in us ”(Jn 17:21).
When Jesus was leaving this world he prayed to God the Father asking for us with these words: “ Holy Father, to those who have given me, keep them in your name, so that they may be one, just as we are . When I was with them in the world, I kept them in your name (…) But now I come to you and I speak this in the world, so that they have my joy fulfilled in themselves ” (Jn 17, 11-13).
Jesus Christ invited us to be one with Him . What a wonderful gift! What an exceptional grace to be able to join Grace itself! What generosity to give us not only the best of himself, but to all himself, being that it is pure Light and pure Love.
We are invited to enter the Father's house, that of the many rooms, that of the resplendent Unity that fills with Peace and full of Wisdom and Joy .
Simple words and an act of love so great that it lasts forever and is updated every day at Mass. Jesus continues to give, continues to offer, continues to invite us to unite with Him, and in Him with our brothers.
But how? How do we respond to Jesus and say yes, that we want to be one with Him, that we want to be like Him, that we want to feel our soul full of the Holy Spirit, full of blessings, floating in the joy he wanted to leave us?
We respond by receiving communion, eating the Bread of Life that he offers us at Mass. Not only has Christ made us a huge and eternal gift but he has also given it to us in a very easy way so that we can receive it without complications! If our heart is thirsty for the Living Water and the Bread of Heaven, it is enough that we open our mouth with faith so that Jesus Eucharist enters us and nourishes us with his Love.
At the last supper with his apostles Jesus “took the bread and gave thanks, and broke it and gave them saying: This is my body that is given for you ; Do this in remembrance of me. In the same way, after having had dinner, he took the cup saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you ”(Lk 22, 18-20).
With simplicity and joy he pronounced us these words by which he gave his body and his blood. We know of the enormous effort and suffering that he had to endure on the cross to finalize his offer . We need his Body and Blood above all things, to be united to Him and live forever. When we receive it, let's not forget to say: My God and my Love, eternal thanks for rescuing us with your body and your blood, thanks for feeding us with them and giving us eternal life .
Communing, eating the Bread of Life, we join Jesus and are part of his Mystical Body which is the Church.
Bread of Life
Teaching in Galilee before his passion Jesus said clearly “I am the bread of life (…) I am the living bread that came down from heaven; if anyone eats this bread he will live forever ; and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world ”(Jn 6, 48-51).
“He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life; and I will resurrect it on the last day . Because my meat is real food and my blood is real drink. He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood in me remains and I in him. As the living Father sent me and I live for the Father, so he who eats me will live also for me ”(Jn 6, 54-57).
Eating Jesus opens the doors to eternal life. But even better, since today we join Him, we remain in Him, we are One with Him and enjoy His Joy by participating in the embrace with the Holy Father.
The Trappist monk Bernardo Olivera explains: “It is true that in the Eucharist we eat Jesus. But it is not the complete truth. The mystery is that it is Jesus who eats us. Instead of changing the bread of our body, we are changed in the body of Christ. And as the Holy Spirit dwells fully in the body of Christ, so he will also dwell fully in those who are assimilated by this body. The Eucharist fills us with the Spirit and unites us all in the one Spirit. The Eucharist builds the Church as the Body of the Risen One! ” (Bernardo Olivera, 2013, p.22).
When Christ enters through our mouths like Bread of Life, assimilated within us, it transforms us, unites us to Him as he said two thousand years ago, and makes us more and more similar to Him. Saint Paul explained “I am no longer I who lives, it is Christ who lives in me ” (Ga 2.20). Communion is surrender and be transformed by the Son of God, to be more and more children of God in the Firstborn.
The Church is the people of God, the Church is the Mystical Body of Christ . Going to Mass with an open heart and with faith we join the Lord and our brothers. We are assimilating in Christ, looking more and more like Him. At least a little! At least we are invited to that!
God is love
Saint John the Evangelist said: "God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him (...) For as he is so we are in this world" (1 Jn 4, 16-17).
Communing we join Christ. And since Christ is Love, we can say that if we commune in spirit and in truth, we grow in love. Trees are known for their fruits: if our fruits are compassionate and loving, we can calmly affirm that we are united to the tree of Christ.
It is not difficult to go on the Way of Love, because Jesus "loved us first" (1 Jn 4, 19). It is easy to love who loves you first, and that is what God has done with us . He gave us his body and his blood, to forgive us for all our sins and to be one with him. And as we are one with him, we resemble him. And God is love. So we, if we are from God, are love too.
Today (6/23/2017), in the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Christ, we worship those who have loved us to the extreme and remain in God loving and respecting all our brothers.
Sources and bibliography
Olivera, Bernardo. Following Jesus in Mary: guidelines for a daily spirituality. Vol. 1 1st ed. Autonomous City of Buenos Aires: Lumen, 2013.
Editor: Cecilia Wechsler, member of the Great White Brotherhood hermandadblanca.org