Homily on the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of our Lord
Dearly Beloved, on this feast of the solemnity of the Body and Blood of our Lord, Holy mother the church reminds us of the ever presence of Christ in his church. This great mystery of Christ’ presence is made possible in the context of the mass through the action of the priest. Permit me to use this occasion to reflect on the mass as a whole in the face of one Catalina Rivas, originally from Bolivia but currently residing in Merida Yucatan in Mexico. This lady is believed to be receiving messages from our Lord and our blessed mother. Please note that the Vatican as yet, has not confirmed or otherwise, the authenticity of these messages. However, the local ordinary of the diocese has given support to these messages. It is in this light that I wish to share some few highlights of her messages with you as we celebrate the solemnity of the Body and Blood.
According to her, the blessed mother appeared to her to observe the mass and give testimony to the whole world, hoping that the message will enkindle many hearts in their devotion to the Holy Eucharist and the celebration of the Mass.
The first thing was how the entrance hymn was sung, not just by those present but a voice she could not identify. At the penitential rite, she was encouraged to seek forgiveness after she insisted that she was at confession just the night before. She was instructed to ask for forgiveness for not making enough time for personal preparation before mass.
It was a feast day, and the Gloria was to be recited. Our Lady said: “Glorify and bless with all your love the Holy Trinity, in your acknowledgement of being one of Its creatures.”
How different was that Gloria! Suddenly she saw herself in a far off place full of light, before the Majestic Presence of the Throne of God. (Can you gently close your eyes and go through this similar experience with me) Imagine yourself before the majestic throne of God and repeat these words in your mind.
Glory to God in the highest,
and peace to His people on earth.
Lord God, heavenly King,
Almighty God and Father,
we worship You, we give You thanks,
we praise You for Your glory.
For You alone are the Holy One,
You alone are the Lord,
You alone are the Most High,
Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit,
in the glory of the Father.
The moment of the Liturgy of the Word arrived, and the Virgin Mary made her to pray that the Words from scripture inspire her. She observed how the reader was well prepared and proclaimed the message from scripture and not just reading a piece of literature. The preparation of the lector makes a big difference.
At the Offertory, when the gifts of bread and wine are brought forward, an invisible offertory procession is also taking place. It was as if from the side of each person present in the Cathedral, another person emerged, and soon the Cathedral became full of young, beautiful people. They were dressed in very white robes, and they started to move into the central aisle and, then, went towards the Altar. The guardian angels of every person present in church are bringing forth gifts of love and trust and self-surrender—except some of these angels are empty-handed, because the human beings entrusted to their care are only physically present in church, with their hearts and attention elsewhere. These are mostly those who have been conditioned to be present but actually don’t want anything to do with the celebration.
The final moment of the Preface arrived, and when the assembly said, “Holy, Holy, Holy”, suddenly everything that was behind the celebrants disappeared. Behind the left side of the Archbishop, thousands of Angels appeared in a diagonal line, small angels, big angels, angels with immense wings, angels with small wings, angels without wings. Everyone knelt with their hands united in prayer, and bowed their heads in reverence. Beautiful music was heard as if there were many choirs with different voices, all singing in unison together with the people: Holy, Holy, Holy...
Our Lady told her those shining without wings are
“the Saints and the Blessed of Heaven, and among them are the souls of your relatives who already enjoy the Presence of God.” She was surprised to see the blessed mother behind the bishop kneeling. These were the words of the blessed mother to her: “It surprises you to see Me standing a little behind the Archbishop, does it not? This is how it should be... With all the love that My Son gives Me, I don’t have the dignity that He has given the priests of being able to perform the daily Miracle with My hands as they do with their priestly hands. Because of this, I feel a deep respect for priests and for the miracle that God carries out through them, which compels Me to kneel here behind them.”
Then again she saw before the Altar, there appeared some shadows of people in a gray color with their hands raised. The Holy Virgin said: “These are the blessed souls of Purgatory, who await your prayers to be refreshed. Do not stop praying for them. (When was the last time you prayed for the dead? Have you ever requested the mass to be said for any dead person before ?).
She described the celebrant at the time of consecration in these words. “He was a person of normal height, but suddenly, he began to grow, becoming filled with light, a supernatural light between white and gold that enveloped him and grew very strong around the face. And because of it, I could not see his features. When he raised the Host, I saw his hands, and on the back of his hands, he had some marks from which emanated a great deal of light. It was Jesus! It was Him Who was wrapping His Body around the celebrant, as if He were lovingly surrounding the hands of the Archbishop. At that moment, the Host began to grow and became enormous, and upon it the marvelous face of Jesus appeared looking at His people.
By instinct, she wanted to bow her head, and Our Lady said: “Do not look down. Look up to view and contemplate Him and pay your homage to the King of Kings.” She wondered how Jesus was taking on the body of the celebrant and, at the same time, He was inside the Host. And as he lowered the Host, it returned to its normal size. Tears ran down her cheeks.
The first time she heard the Lord himself speak to her was at the Lord’s prayer. She was asked to focus and make meaning from the words and not just recite as a poem as some do.
At the sign of peace she saw the flash of light flowing from the altar in-between those who were genuinely wishing others peace. Those who have let go their bitterness and were at peace with themselves.
At communion time she saw the difference between those who glowed after receiving and those who remained just themselves. Our Lady explained why to her. Your guess is as good as mine.
At the end of communion Our lady asked her to pray for the priest because they face enormous difficulties and challenges by virtue of their calling.
Then at the concluding prayer, she was asked not to be in a hurry but to wait always for the final blessing the Holy Virgin said: Those consecrated hands are giving you the blessing in the Name of the Holy Trinity. Therefore, make the Sign of the Cross with respect, as if it was the last one of your life.”
Dearly beloved, this a brief reflection from a very long article I read. I hope it is enough to encourage some of you and your faith in this celebration of the Most Holy Body and Blood of or Lord. May you always feel and experience his loving presence any time you attend the mass.