Rev. Stanley M. Moczydlowski, M.B.A., M. Div. (Fr. Stan)

August 18/19, 2018

20th Sunday in Ordinary Time


   I don’t have to tell you how many things about our faith can be difficult to grasp and maybe even seem a little outrageous at times. Trinity, Incarnation, death and resurrection, baptism, and Sacred Scripture are a few of our beliefs that can puzzle us at times. Why did God take on human nature? Why did Jesus have to die? Couldn’t the Father have chosen a different way to reconcile a broken world? Why is baptism the doorway to life in Christ? Why can’t God come to each of us personally and tell us what he wants and expects? You get the picture.


   Sometimes we can have a tendency simply to accept the way things are or accept what we have been taught without thinking about them too much. Faith can be a little like that at times. Yet it is often in the wrestling with what we believe that we come to a deeper understanding or insight. This is especially true when we struggle with the ‘whys’ of our faith - even though we almost certainly won’t fully comprehend God’s intention.


   So, why Holy Communion? Why would our Lord and Savior want to come to us in this one-of-a-kind way? Why does he choose to be real food for us? God could have chosen an infinite number of ways to connect with us, and yet this is one of the most intimate, important, and profound ways he chooses to do so. That, in itself, should tell us something.


   John’s discourse brings home our need for God for everything, and above all, we need life from God. New life. When you think of new life, you automatically assume it will be a change from the old. If you could change anything about your life, what would it be? A better job? More friends? Nicest home? Higher paying job? Changing or mending a relationship…


   But how many of us would answer, “I want to be changed?” “I am the one who wants and needs to be different.” I hope many of us would say that, but the truth is that the number would probably be few. We often sit around thinking, “If only this was different or that was different, my world would be so much better.”


   And maybe that’s one of the reasons why Jesus comes to us as real food. You see, the new life he desires for us will never come about by having only the externals in our life change, no matter how much we would like that to be so. No, the incredible life God wants for each of us, a life with, in, and for him, is possible only when we are changed, when we are transformed from the inside out. It is when I change, that my life truly changes. It sounds a little like a cliché,  and the reason is simple, because it is true: “Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him.” When we come forward to receive the Lord’s Body and Blood, may we be truly open to the new life he is offering us,  and may this communion with our God, the Bread of Life, begin to change us deeply and for all time.

   

God bless you,
Fr. Stan