Body and Blood of Christ Feast   June 1 & 2

How grateful are we to He Who Is The Lamb of God?

I am told that on a little church-chapel in Germany stands a stone lamb which has an interesting history: When some workmen were building the roof over it, one workman fell to the ground. His companions hastened down expecting to see him killed. But he was unhurt. A lamb was grazing below when he fell on it, crushing the lamb. The surviving worker was so grateful that he made an image of the lamb in stone and placed it on the church building as a memorial. The lamb saved him from the fall.

We can spiritually relate to this, can’t we? For all eternity we will remember Jesus as the Lamb of God who died for us. He has kept us from death, taking it upon Himself for us.  He wants to bear upon Himself our sins, as He so planned (see Isa.53:4-7,10), so as to give us the freedom to live on unto eternal life!

When we gather for Christ’ Body and Blood at Holy Mass, such as on this Corpus Christi Sunday, can we not see the connection of what we are presently doing in the Sacred Liturgy and what we will be joining in Heavenly worship, as so clearly shown in Revelations 5?

I saw a scroll* in the right hand of the one who sat on the throne. It had writing on both sides and was sealed with seven seals. Then I saw a mighty angel who proclaimed in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?”But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to examine it. I (St. John, in his vision of Apocalypse) shed many tears because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to examine it.One of the elders said to me, “Do not weep. The lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David,* has triumphed, enabling him to open the scroll with its seven seals.” Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne and the four living creatures and the elders a Lamb that seemed to have been slain. He had seven horns and seven eyes; these are the [seven] spirits of God sent out into the whole world. He came and received the scroll from the right hand of the one who sat on the throne.When he took it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each of the elders held a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of the holy ones. They all sang a new hymn:“Worthy are You (O LAMB OF GOD) to receive the scroll and to break open its seals, for you were slain and with your blood you purchased for God those from every tribe and tongue, people and nation.” 

We celebrate the Real and Present Offering of Christ Jesus the Lord for us—of His Body and Blood—to ransom us out of slavery to sin and death.

The Lamb of God is a title used of the Savior in post-Resurrection references a whole lot.  It is more than any other title of Jesus given in Revelation, as you heard one example of it from Revelations 5.  It is one of 28 times that “Lamb of God” is mentioned in that last book of the Bible.


As we come to a pinnacle prayer in every Mass, it still gives me shivers when I hold up The Bread of Life Jesus and announce: “Behold The Lamb of God Who takes away the sins of the world!”  In that moment of Holy Mass, I use the words once said by John the Baptist (Jn1.29) as recorded by St. John the Evangelist of the prophet recognizing Jesus’ and His identity.  I, as priest-presider in the Mass, am sincerely hoping that many in the congregation are recognizing the One Who is our Salvation as come in Sacrament to our house of worship, so as to be given to His own as like a sheep being fed, of His Flock, the Church.

We indeed address our Lord, God’s Son, in the manner of this great title of Lamb of God, which is bestowed of Him due to His sacrificial love for us.  We recall it every-time in our Holy Mass, in the Lamb of God song-prayer that leads into the Communion Rite. Take special note of it today and what great meaning it is to have for us. Compare what we do in our Mass here to what they do in Heaven in its High Liturgy going on,. Here’s what St. John saw in the eternal liturgy vision:: “I, John, beheld many angels who surrounded the throne and the living creatures and the elders… countless in number, and they cried out in a loud voice: “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches, wisdom and strength, honor and glory and blessing… Then …every creature in heaven and earth cry out: To the One who sits on the throne and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor, glory and might, forever and ever.”  Then the four living creatures there answered, ‘Amen,’ and the elders fell down and worshiped.” 

Heaven adores the Lamb right now, and we on earth look to match it, in our own limited way, but God lets His Spirit come down to our liturgy, even to communicate Christ Jesus among us, as He gives us Himself as Lamb of God in the eternal Christ to our altar and to be celebrated in Sacrament. This is our very special Catholic practice, which differs us from so many other Christians, who don’t celebrate the Real Presence of The Lamb.  On this matter, I urge you to read the book “The Lamb’s Supper: The Mass as Heaven on Earth” by author Scott Hahn for a whole description of that great Catholic reality and its immense meaning:

You have already prayed a prayer at Mass to the Lamb on High: LORD GOD, LAMB OF GOD, SON OF THE FATHER… HAVE MERCY ON US.   Indeed, we plead the Mercy of God, especially on this particular Sunday of the Body and Blood of Christ feast.

I was thinking of putting up an appropriate sign over the doorways going out of our Resurrection church:  It comes from one of those 28 places in Revelation fore-mentioned. Revelation 14:4: Follow the Lamb wherever He goes.”

Lastly, in some personal memories of faith, I can think of times throughout my life when the Eucharistic Lamb has called to me or inspired me, better to say. When I was in fourth grade, I recall a time after a parochial school Mass when the Lord inspired me to ask my teacher to let me stay in church after Mass ended, and for all of a half-hour recess ahead. She asked for my reason, since she knew I loved recess.  I told her that I was having a special experience of Holy Communion, and I needed a longer thank you time. She granted it.  Another memory of Communion goes to my college freshman year first week.  I received a grace to keep going to Mass, as I had a choice to make that first weekend of college life.  Would I go to the Newman Center Mass? The Lord inspired my “yes” or “Amen” to that. It made all the difference of my young adult years ahead.  Now that I am far into a third decade of priestly life, and here with you, God inspires again to have me choose Eucharistic adoration with my time. Every Friday. This parish offers 3 hours of Friday adoration, with confession, and I am inspired by God to now make more time for Adoration in my life.  He inspired our past Friday Adoration time, and I thank Him for keeping me coming to Him, the Lamb of God Who grants us peace.    ###

Below: One of the 12 Ghent Altarpiece panels, which are in St. Bavo’s Cathedral in Ghent, Belgium.

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