Tuesday, September 18, 2018
Today, in Mercy, Jesus tells us that we are his Body. How do we keep faith with this when the Body strains against its own parts? How do we look beyond human frailty to the vision of Christ?
No one can deny that the Church struggles with its peace and unity. The current reality of the Catholic Church is fraught with abuse, division and threatened schism. And these things are nothing new. Church history reads like a novel laced with intrigue, power plays, and gratuitous violence.
How are we to reconcile these realities with Jesus’ pronouncement in today’s Gospel?
I think we do so by acknowledging
- that the Living Church has not yet sifted out the chaff from the wheat
- that the Body of Christ is still being crucified
- that our discipleship consists in sharing the continuing act of redemption with Jesus
We strengthen ourselves for this sacred participation by our faithfulness to the Gospel, by our quest for meaningful Eucharist, and by our reverence for Christ’s presence in all Creation.
Pierre de Chardin saw the Body of Christ in cosmic terms which open our understanding and challenge us to an evolution of grace. He says:
“ No, the Body of Christ must be understood boldly, as it was seen and loved by St. John, St. Paul, and the Fathers. It forms in nature a world which is new, an organism moving and alive in which we are all united physically, biologically….
It is first by the Incarnation and next by the Eucharist that Christ organizes us for Himself and imposes Himself upon us. Although He has come above all for souls, uniquely for souls, He could not join them together and bring them life without assuming and animating along with them all the rest of the world. By His Incarnation, He inserted Himself not just into humanity but into the universe which supports humanity, and He did so not simply as another connected element, but with the dignity and function of a directing principle, of a Center toward which everything converges in harmony and Love.”
(de Chardin: La Vie Cosmique)
Music: Song of the Body of Christ ~ David Haas