For so long we may have been engaging ourselves with the daily celebration and reception of the Eucharist that we may have lost conscious awareness of our own relational, sacrificial “giving and taking” mission with others to continue molding a grace-filled, joy-invigorating community living, as Jesus would if He were in our place.
The challenge for us is to keep recalling the mission and death of Jesus as unceasing model of our own dying to self or departure from today’s trends towards selfie-ism, a form of Individualism. It is actually Jesus who engages Himself with us, in word and sacrament, that we may remain extensions of His Life-giving gifted-ness to humanity.
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI in his Apostolic Exhortation Sacramentum Caritatis emphasizes how the “Eucharist renews the life of the individual through a reorientation to God in an all-inclusive way. The Eucharist transforms the whole of our lives because it transforms us—the core person we are—into an ever more alive and alert companion of God in the world.” The IEC 2016 reminded the participants that “from our participation in the Eucharist, we are sent forth to be witnesses of God’s compassion towards all our brothers and sisters.”
With humble thanks for God’s daily graces, our engagement with the Eucharist will be the inner strength day by day to accomplish our particular task of witnessing and ‘dying to self for God’, as a poem by Grenville Kleiser put it, “If I can do something today, If I can serve along life’s way, If I can something helpful say, Lord, show me how; If I can right a human wrong, If I can help to make one strong, If I can cheer with smile or song, Lord, show me how; If I can aid one in distress, If I can make a burden less, If I can spread more happiness, Lord, show me how. “