Engaging Faith | Thu, Jun 12, 2014
Corpus Christi Sunday [a]
June 22, 2014
Copyright @ 2014, Center of Concern
Deuteronomy 8:2-3, 14b-16a
1 Corinthians 10:16-17
June 20: World Refugee Day
June 21: Start of summer in the Northern Hemisphere
June 26: International Day in Support of Victims of Torture
(June is Torture Awareness Month.)
June 28: Anticipated start of Ramadan, the Muslim Holy Month
Catholic social teaching is built on a commitment to the poor. This commitment arises from our experiences of Christ in the Eucharist.
- US Bishops, Sharing Catholic Social Teaching: Challenges and Directions
Just as the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say “thou shalt not” to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills.
- Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, 53
The whole Church as such, is directly called to the service of charity: "In the very early days the Church added the agape to the Eucharistic Supper, and thus showed herself to be wholly united around Christ by the bond of charity. …. charity gives life and sustains the works of solidarity that look to the total needs of the human being.
- John Paul II, Christifideles Laici
Among the mature members of the Community of Nations, however, a strong awareness is needed that considers food as a universal right of all human beings, without distinction or discrimination.
- Benedict XVI, Message for World Food Day 2007
…We are scandalized because we know that there is enough food for everyone and that hunger is the result of a poor distribution of goods and income.
- Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium, 191
Let us pray that God grant us the grace of knowing a world where no one dies of hunger.
- Pope Francis@Pontifex - Dec. 19, 2013
We cannot sleep peacefully while babies are dying of hunger and the elderly are without medical assistance.
- Pope Francis@Pontifex - Aug. 17, 2013
Thoughts for your consideration
Each scripture today refers to a meal that is shared and to the effects of that meal.
- The manna reminded the people of the Exodus that they were not alone on their journey. They needed God. They needed the community. They were on a journey of liberation that was bigger than their personal selves.
- The Eucharist was to remind the Corinthians that they shared one bread and thus were one people. The meal called them to unity and solidarity. The meal called them to move beyond their divisions.
- In the gospel, the dialogue with Jesus reminds all of us that we are nourished for the “life of the world.” The Eucharist sends us forth for a mission of liberation and life in the world. Our Eucharist celebrates and challenges our sharing and our relationship with each other.
We can ask questions on the level of our sacramental celebration:
- Does our celebration of the Eucharist reflect the excitement and joy of being one in community?
- Does our celebration reflect a spirit of deep “solidarity?"
- Are we celebrating our solidarity as the living Mystical Body of Christ?
- Do we recognize Christ in the breaking of the bread?
- Is everyone welcome? Is there diversity in our community?
- Does the Eucharist empower us for action – for life?
We can ask questions on the level of our life as a community:
- How are we in solidarity with the poor in our city or town and in the world?
- Do we offer direct service to those in need?
- Does our solidarity move from the works of charity toward the works of justice?
- Do we work for that “social change” that will heal the structures and systems that keep us apart – that prevent us from being one body?
- How does our solidarity with God help us to bring an end to war and violence?
- How are we the living Body of Christ in the world?
The Eucharist is about sharing food and sharing in God’s life.
Questions for Reflection in your Faith Sharing Group
- What has been the most significant meal that you have shared with a group of people?
- What made it significant? How did it affect your behavior?
- Have you ever experienced hunger?
- Have you been with people who have experienced great hunger? What did you learn?
Actions - Links
Bread for the World
On Corpus Christ Sunday, we may feel called to reflect on the issue of hunger in the world. Bread for the World is a nationwide Christian citizens movement seeking justice for the world's hungry people by lobbying our nation's decision makers. Their web site is at: http://www.bread.org
Sign their petition at: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/dont-snatch-food-from?source=c.url&r_by=10573243
Act Now: Support International Poverty-Focused Humanitarian and Development Assistance at: https://secure3.convio.net/bread/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=193
Message from Pope Francis
The challenging message from Pope Francis for the last world food day can be found at:
It is a scandal that there is still hunger and malnutrition in the world! It is not just a question of responding to immediate emergencies, but of addressing together, at all levels, a problem that challenges our personal and social conscience, in order to achieve a just and lasting solution…What can we do? I think that an important step is to tear down decisively the barriers of individualism, self-withdrawal and the slavery of profit at all costs; and this needs to be accomplished not only in the dynamics of human relations but also in global economic and financial dynamics.
June is Torture Awareness Month
June 26th is the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture
Get ideas and action suggestions from the National Religious Campaign against Torture at: http://www.nrcat.org/
Consider signing the petition to the president at:
New evidence further reinforces the importance of the nutritional status of women at the time of conception and during pregnancy, both for the health of the mother and for ensuring healthy fetal growth and development. 32 million babies are born small-for-gestational-age (SGA) annually—representing 27% of all births in low or middle Income Countries. Fetal growth restriction causes more than 800,000 deaths each year in the first month of life—more than a quarter of all newborn deaths.
Prayers of Intercession
Response: Lord, teach us how to share what we have.
For the millions in our nation who experience some shortage of food, we pray…
For the millions around the world who experience hunger today, we pray…
For farmers who can no longer effectively farm because of the injustices brought about by globalization and various trade policies, we pray…
For all workers who are without a living wage, we pray…
For women who are denied equal opportunity to share in the fruits of their work, we pray…
For children who don’t have what they need to grow up as healthy adults, we pray…
For all those who hunger for justice, especially those without political freedom and those unjustly imprisoned or tortured, we pray…
A Native African Prayer for Peace
the Great Thumb we cannot evade to tie any knot;
the Roaring Thunder that splits mighty trees:
the all-seeing Lord up on high who sees even the footprints of an antelope
on a rock mass here on Earth.
You are the one who does not hesitate to respond to our call.
You are the cornerstone of peace.
God’s Banquet is for All
God of all creation, we give you thanks for the seeds that you sow in our lives, the seeds of faith, hope and love. Help us to nurture these seeds in all your people, that together we may produce a bountiful harvest and in unity enjoy the feast we are all given in your grace. In the name of him who showed us that the banquet is for all, Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.