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Sunday, August 3, 1997

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18th Sunday Ordinary Time

Exodus 16:2-4, 12-15
Psalm 78:3, 23-25, 54
Ephesians 4:17, 20-24
John 6:24-35

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more than miracles

"I Myself am the Bread of life." —John 6:35

Do you believe that Jesus is "truly, really and substantially" present in Holy Communion? (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1374)

Before Jesus revealed that He would give us His body and blood in Communion, He performed the amazing miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fish (Jn 6:11ff). Then Jesus walked on the water (Jn 6:19ff).

In this context of miracles, Jesus declared: "My flesh is real food and My blood real drink" (Jn 6:55). Under these circumstances, you would think we would believe anything the Lord said, even if we didn't understand it. However, "many of His disciples broke away and would not remain in His company any longer" (Jn 6:66). Only those believed whom God the Father drew and taught (Jn 6:44-45) in the Spirit (see Jn 6:63).

To believe in Jesus present in the Eucharist, we need not only the miracles of Jesus but also the teaching of the Father and the revelation of the Spirit. We must be Trinitarian to be eucharistic. We need the Holy Spirit of Pentecost to cry out in our hearts "Abba" (Gal 4:6; Rm 8:15). Then we will acknowledge the eucharistic Jesus as Lord (1 Cor 12:3).

Glory be to the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit! Glory be to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament!

Prayer:  "Sweet Sacrament, we Thee adore. O, make us love Thee more and more."

Promise:  "You must lay aside your former way of life and the old self which deteriorates through illusion and desire, and acquire a fresh, spiritual way of thinking." —Eph 4:22-23

Praise:  Alleluia! Jesus is risen! He holds "the keys of death and the nether world" (Rv 1:18). Alleluia!

Reference:  (For related teaching, order our booklet, This Is My Body.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, February 1, 1997

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 4, 1997