Corpus Christi: The Eucharist as Preparation

Today we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, often called by its Latin name, Corpus Christi. The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith, and today we take the time to ponder the mystery and the great gift that is available to us in the Body and Blood of Christ.

Monsignor James Patrick Shea, president of the University of Mary, stopped by Morning Air® recently to discuss this feast of Corpus Christi, and how we can experience this feast day more fully.

“It’s a first class preparation for the way that we are meant to spend eternity,” Msgr. Shea said. “The encounter between the believer and Jesus – our Lord, our Savior, our Master, the One we love and the One who loves us – that encounter draws us into the heart of God, into a kind of contemplative peace in His presence. That very encounter is what we’ll be about for the rest of eternity in heaven.”

And while it’s difficult to imagine what eternity will be like, Msgr. Shea explained that the Eucharist gives us a foretaste both in its simplicity and in its inexhaustible mystery.

“God is fundamentally simple,” he said. “Of course, that means that our encounter with God in the simplicity, in the beauty, in the potency of His love is a mystery that we can go into forever and ever, without exhausting it and without ever coming to the end of it. I think that the simplicity of the adoration of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is so beautiful. And it prepares us, because we can’t go to the end of it here in this life, it prepares us for being with Him forever in heaven.”

Many parishes around the world will be holding Eucharistic processions today to celebrate the Feast of Corpus Christi – a tradition that goes back centuries. Msgr. Shea explained why this practice is such a beautiful opportunity to share the beauty of the Catholic faith.

“That power of the Eucharistic procession is one of the great geniuses of the Catholic faith,” he said. “Because our faith isn’t some kind of a private matter that we keep to ourselves. There’s a boldness, there’s an energy, there’s a joy about our faith in the Eucharist that at Corpus Christi we have the opportunity to share with others.”

Listen to the full conversation below:

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Stephanie Foley serves as a Digital Media Producer at Relevant Radio®. She is a graduate of Franciscan University of Steubenville, where she studied journalism, and she has worked in Catholic radio for 12 years. Stephanie is a wife, a mother of three boys, and in her free time she enjoys reading, running, and really good coffee. You can find more of Stephanie’s writing at and on the free Relevant Radio mobile app.