From the Priest-In-Charge of Sarum St. Martin’s
Corpus Christi 2017
We are all familiar he idea of a Jubilee, a time of rest, a time of celebration, a time of rejoicing. In the past few years they have come thick and fast: the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Magna Carta Jubilee. Wonderful occasions of national rejoicing and celebration. Yes, we are all very familiar with Jubilee, a time for us to rest, to celebrate and to rejoice. And over all of these, a time to give thanks to God. Today as we celebrate the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ we are again celebrating Jubilee, a time to rest, a time to celebrate, and time to rejoice, and a time to give thanks to God.
Corpus Christi, as we continue to name this Solemnity is intimately linked with Maundy Thursday, but whereas on that day our minds are full of sadness that Jesus is going to his Crucifixion, today our minds are full of joy. For today our voices should be full of song and power and melody for we sing out our thanks with power to the Lord.
Last Sunday we celebrated the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity and in that celebration we remembered that the 2nd Person of the Godhead took our flesh, our material, in His Incarnation. He took matter and made it live with His Life. Today, Corpus Christi, we celebrate how Our Lord took the matter of Bread and Wine and transformed them by the action of His Death and Resurrection into those material things that live with His Risen Life. So that when we receive our Holy Communion we receive Him in His Risen Life; when we kneel in adoration before the Consecrated Bread and Wine of the Eucharist we kneel before Him in His Risen Life; when we are blessed at Benediction with the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance we receive His Blessing in His Risen Life. And that is why today is Jubilee; the Lord Jesus, the 2nd person of the Holy Trinity is truly with us, as He promised, our Emmanuel, God with us.
Our Lord returned to Heaven on the first Ascension Day but did not leave the Apostles and through them us, without Himself, for in the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost the promise of Maundy Thursday was made actual in the Consecrated Bread and Wine of the Altar, His Risen and Glorified Life.
So, today, let us celebrate Jubilee again, not a Jubilee of sixty years, but sixty times sixty, and not a Jubilee of 800 years but 800 times 800. For we are more than blessed in the Body and Blood of the Risen Christ. We are blessed in the Body and Blood of Christ, for the duty and service that we offer here is answered by God in the gifts of Bread and Wine which His Holy Spirit makes the Risen Body and Blood of Jesus so that we can live His Risen Life for Him in the world, in duty and service to Almighty God singing out with lives enriched by Him, lives alive with Him, lives lived in Holy Jubilee.
And that is why this morning instead of the usual way in which we conclude our Parish Eucharist we will joyfully join in the procession of the Blessed Sacrament and kneel in adoration to receive Christ’s own blessing. Not for any reason save that we are Christians who have