Yesterday the Church in the United States celebrated the Feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ - Corpus Christi. Here are a few of the thoughts that I shared at the homily.
The quote in the title of this post is something we hear at times. I'm not quite sure what it means, though. Probably it means that if you eat loads of junk food your health will reflect that, and on the other hand, if you eat nutritiously you will be healthy. I shared that a pundit suggested that if there is truth to the saying, then you should not eat a lot of nuts!
But when we look at who we are and what we do in our worship and what we receive at the table and what we become for others, then this saying is indeed true.
We gather for worship as a Covenant People who have given their assent and affirmation to the law of love and the grace of redemption given to us by Christ through our baptism into his body. As a Covenant People, one with Christ, we are the Body of Christ. We gather as the Body of Christ to celebrate in Eucharist the redemptive act that has won for us our freedom - the breaking open of the Word of Truth and the breaking open of his Body as well as the shedding of his Blood, a Blood that seals the Covenant. It is in that gathering that we call forth the power of God's Spirit to take simple elements of bread and wine and change them into the Body and Blood of Christ in the Eucharist. That Body and Blood is then given to us as food and drink for our transformation and nourishment so that we can go forth from that place of worship as the Body of Christ to a needy world, bringing Christ to others. In a real sense, then, we are what we eat.
Someone after the 11:00 am Mass asked me about the quote from Saint Augustine that I do not recall hearing before that speaks of this same reality. Augustine said "Behold what you are: become what you receive." May we rejoice in who we are and strive to continue to be Christ for all people.