Reflection: Corpus Christi Sunday, Cycle A

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Dt. 8:2-3; 14b-16a; 1 Cor. 10;16-17; Jn. 6:51-58.

This year A, Mother Church presents to us very fundamental teachings on the Holy Eucharist. The 1st reading from Deuteronomy shows us the prefiguration of the Eucharist in the manna, which the Israelites in the desert called “bread from heaven.” The 2nd reading from 1 Cor. 10 shows us the faith of the early Christians in the Eucharist: the “cup” as the “blood of Christ” and the “bread” as the “body of Christ.” The Gospel reading from Jn. 6 gives us the Eucharist as expressed in the words of Jesus himself. Let us study this passage slowly.

“I am the living bread”: Jesus says “I am”, he is God, and he became man, material and physical, to be the living bread. “That came down from heaven” when he took flesh in the womb of the Virgin Mary. “Whoever eats this bread will live forever… for the life of the world”; giving physical life by the healing of the body: many bodily healings through the Eucharist had been recorded. Emotional healings were also recorded wherein depression was turned into optimism, confusion to calmness, anger and hatred to acceptance and understanding. Spiritual healings were noticed when vices gave way to virtue, and enemies were forgiven. Through the Eucharist life was restored to many persons: physical, emotional and spiritual. “My flesh”: not a symbol of his flesh, not an emblem, not a logo; the words of Jesus are clear. And the Jews understood it that way because they retorted: “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” Up to today many people still object to these words of Jesus: “We are not cannibals!!” This is the second reaction of the Jews that John observed. In v. 41 the Jews “murmured”, but Jesus went on to say, “I am the bread of life” in v.48. Now the Jews “quarreled” but Jesus did not capitulate; rather he insisted, v.53 “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.” “Son of Man”: precisely as God made man, Jesus becomes our bread and drink. He became man not only to suffer, die and rise from the dead for our salvation, but also to leave us his body and blood as food and drink and as continuous sacrifice on the altar.

V.54 “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him on the last days.” V.55 “For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink.” Take note that Jesus does not say “symbol of my flesh” nor “symbol of my blood.” He insists “my flesh” and “my blood” and he calls them “true food” and “true drink.” Surely a symbol cannot be true food nor true drink. Furthermore, is Jesus not the Word of God and “by his Word all things were made?” (Jn. 1:3). Clearly, Jesus has the power to make this bread his flesh and make this drink his blood. Thus, when we eat this bread, we are eating his flesh; and when we take this cup we are drinking his blood (cf. 1 Cor 10:16). Many Eucharistic miracles have been documented wherein the consecrated host bled. The nearest to us is Sis. Julia Kim of Korea who showed to Fr. Jerry Orbos, SVD, the bread in her tongue that was bleeding. “Raise him on the last days”: Our receiving communion is the pledge of our resurrection. St. Paul tells us: “It is no longer I that live but Jesus lives in me” (Gal 2:20).

V.56 “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him.” Jesus now tells us the effect of our receiving him in Holy Communion: he unites himself to us and unites us to himself. In him we become sons and daughters of the Father. Many though we are, we are one body in Christ. When we eat ordinary food, the food becomes us; when we eat him in Holy Communion, we become whom we eat.

V.57 “Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me.” Therefore, the life in us is ultimately because of the Father who is in Jesus. We call it divine life or sanctifying grace. Because of this divine life in us, v.58b “whoever eats this bread will live forever” becomes true. Receiving Holy Communion gives us the promise of the resurrection and of eternal life. Our Mother Church teaches that what we have in the Eucharist is Jesus’ Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity. Do I recognize his presence as such, that in the Tabernacle is not just bread, but the very Person of Jesus? Many non-Catholics have declared that while attending Protestant and Born-Again worships they felt the Presence while the people were there; but when the people have gone, there was no presence, the place felt empty. On the contrary, they testified that when they entered the Catho0lic Church even when empty of people, they felt the Presence. What about us Catholics? Do we feel this presence? And do we behave accordingly?

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena, OAR

Fray Hubert Dunstan Decena, OAR

Priest/Religious/Bible Professor of the Order of Augustinian Recollects in the Province of St. Ezekiel Moreno.

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< 2020 >
October
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  • All day
    October 1, 2020

    LAUNCHING OF ROSARY MONTH

    Note to all Local Priors [for the Book of Masses]: After the feast of the Archangels (Sept. 29), “a Mass is to be offered for the living relatives, friends, and benefactors of the Order” (cf. Add. Code 70d)

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  • All day
    October 2, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Leonardo Pauligue
    Sr. Leah Lachica, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (2004-2020)
    Fray Leo Alaras

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    October 3, 2020

    START OF THE NOVENA TO OUR LADY OF THE ABANDONED (Valencia) / OUR LADY OF THE PILLAR (Baguio)

    POPE FRANCIS’ PASTORAL VISIT TO ASSISI

    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Elyn Joy Olmedo, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1987-2020)
    Fray Bernard Amparado
    Fray Cristituto Palomar
    Fray Joseph Granada
    Fray Jorge Peligro

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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4
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    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR OAR VOCATION (cf. LAMP I,5c)

    BIRTHDAY
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    Fray Joffrey Casusa (novice)
    Sr. Manuela Mandia, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    (2003-2020)
    Fray Celestino Cachapero, OAR

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  • All day
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    WORLD TEACHER’S DAY

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Miguela Obera, AR

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    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Primitiva Berdejo, AR
    Sr. Noemi Mapa, AR
    Sr. Rona Alaza, AR

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    October 7, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Juliet Natinga, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2006-2020)
    Fray Henry Santiago
    Fray Anthony Irineo
    Fray Russell Lapidez
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    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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    BIRTHDAY
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    3rd FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY OF THE COMMUNITY OF RECOLETOS DE URBIZTONDO (Pangasinan)

    BIRTHDAY
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    October 10, 2020

    ST. THOMAS OF VILLANOVA,
    Bishop and Patron of Studies

    PRIOR GENERAL LAUNCHES THE BOOK:
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    (Note: Title and cover are not yet finalized)

    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Raul Dael, DD [Bishop of Tandag]
    Sr. Ofelia Laspobres, AR

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    October 11, 2020

    ST. POPE JOHN XIII

    PARISH FIESTA OF NSTRA. SNRA. BIRHEN DE LOS REMEDIOS PARISH (Tanapag Village, Saipan)
    Time: 9:00 A.M. (Saipan Time)
    Presider: Most Rev. Ryan Jimenez, D.D. (Bishop of Chalan Kanoa)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Samuel Eyas

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    October 12, 2020

    BLD. MARIA THERESA FASCE, Virgin

    SOLEMNITY OF OUR LADY OF THE PILLAR
    TOMA DE HÁBITO
    Time: 9:00 A.M. / CARES, Baguio City
    Presider & Homilist: Fray Edgar Tubio, OAR (Provincial Councilor)

    PATRONAL FIESTA: PARISH OF OUR LADY OF THE ABANDONED
    Valencia, Negros Oriental
    Time: 10:00 A.M. (cf. FB Live Streaming)
    Fiesta Mass Presider: Most Rev. Julito Cortes, D.D. (Bishop of Dumaguete)

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Seiji Ishii (novice)
    Sr. Shirley Nonato, OAR (Bacolod Monastery)
    Sr. Marilyn Gustilo, AR
    Sr. Bernarditha Barnido, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Mo. Dionisia Mitas de Santa Maria Talangpaz

13
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    October 13, 2020

    COMMEMORATION OF THE DECEASED BENEFACTORS OF OAR

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    October 14, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Laura Cabanacan, AR
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    October 15, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Renz Calex Soriano (simply prof.)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (2005-2020)
    Fray Vincent Cadeliña

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Monica de Espiritu Santo, AR

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    WORLD FOOD DAY 2020

    BIRTHDAY
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    Sr. Ma. Linda Peña, AR
    Jhon Paul Dag-um (RAY-Provincialate)

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1988-2020)
    Fray Manuel Lipardo
    Fray Domingo Saladaga, Jr.
    Fray William Emilito Villaflor

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Margarita de Sgdo. Corazon de Jesus, AR

17
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    BIRTHDAY
    Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco, D.D. [Bishop of Cubao]
    Sr. Ma. Cirila Uy, AR
    Shiela Mae Labadia (RAY-Caidiocan)

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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    Sr. Gabriela Garcines, AR
    Sr. Jacinta Mandia Robin, AR

18
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    October 18, 2020

    WORLD MISSION SUNDAY
    (Pope Francis’ Message:http://www.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/messages/missions /documents/papa-francesco_20200531_giornata-missionaria2020.html

    25th FOUNDING ANNIVERSARY (1995-2020) SARF- VALENCIA CHAPTER

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Arnel Diaz
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    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR THE SICK (cf. LAMP I,5c)

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Arlyn Sarmiento, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Ma. Virginia Acha, AR

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    October 20, 2020

    ST. MAGDALENE OF NAGASAKI,
    Patroness of the Secular Augustinian Recollects

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Ken Oliver Lao

21
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    October 21, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Ursulina Balading, AR
    Sr. Ma. Lutgarda Cañete, AR

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    October 22, 2020

    ST. POPE JOHN PAUL II

    BIRTHDAY
    Archbp. Agustinus Agus, DD (Archdiocese of Pontianak, Indonesia)
    Fray Edgar Tubio
    Sr. Teresita Diana, AR

23
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    October 23, 2020

    ST. WILLIAM THE HERMIT & BLD. JOHN THE GOOD, Religious

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Hernando Coja
    Sr. Herminia Catindig, AR

    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1967-2020)
    Fray Dunstan Huberto Decena

24
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    October 24, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Rafael Cabarles
    Fray Jose Prudencio Castillo

    ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1996-2020)
    Fray Glynn Ortega

25
  • All day
    October 25, 2020

    ST. JOHN STONE, Priest & Martyr

    BIRTHDAY
    Sr. Veronica Purto, AR
    Simon Kurt Casupanan (RAY-Cavite)
    Nestor Tala (RAY-Miranila)

    25th ANNIVERSARY OF SIMPLE PROFESSION
    (1995-2020)
    Fray Joel Dequilla

    PRESBYTERAL ANNIVERSARY
    (1983-2020)
    Most Rev. Buenaventura Famadico, DD (Diocese of San Pablo)

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    October 26, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Dionisio Selma
    Fray Renie Villalino
    Sr. Rosalie Ubo, AR

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Sr. Leonora Mercado, AR

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    October 27, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Fray Antonio Limchaypo

    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
    Mo. Presentacion de San Jose, AR
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    October 28, 2020

    PRAYER INTENTION: FOR OAR MISSION (cf. LAMP I,5c)

    BIRTHDAY
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    October 29, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
    Catherine Ildefonso (RAY-Urbiztondo)
    Kristine Ruelo (RAY-Provincialate)

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  • All day
    October 30, 2020

    ANNIVERSARY
    EPISCOPAL ORDINATION
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    BIRTHDAY
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    ANNIVERSARY OF PRESBYTERAL ORDINATION
    (1999-2020)
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  • All day
    October 31, 2020

    BIRTHDAY
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    DEATH ANNIVERSARY
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