… I was in Walsingham for the Youth 2000 Festival. It was wonderful. If you missed it - plan now for next year! So I didn't get to post about my sermon for Sunday.
Well, St John's sixth chapter ends with the whole group of disciples being thrown by what Jesus has said to them, and only a few continue with him. The Word of God, when it enters into us, generally does not leave us unmoved, but unsettles us and can make us deeply perturbed about what God's plan for us is. But we are in good company - the Blessed Mother was deeply perturbed by what the archangel said to her, but she admitted her fears and received the grace.
How can we too come to terms with the unsettling call that Jesus makes to us as the Eucharist?
Eucharistic adoration, which is an extension of the Mass, and certainly the elevation, enables us to prolong our contact with him, and to be ennobled by him!
Sometimes the Church needs to step outside the Liturgy in order to appreciate anew the most real and most governing reality in the created Universe - the relationship that Jesus has with the Church, and which is fully expressed in the Eucharist. This is what a Eucharistic Congress is. And what will flow out of the National Eucharistic Congress, if we really seek to engage with the Lord, is the ennoblement of the Church.
Neither society nor our culture is going to ennoble the Church today; we are not going to regain a privileged place in society, nor are we going to gain a new position for imposing Christian values on our prevailing culture - these things are not going to happen. But the Lord wants to ennoble his Church. Returning to him will bring about the reform of the Church. Eucharistic adoration is the great call today.