August 2, 2020

Feast of Saint Peter Julian Eymard

“Come to me heedfully; listen, that you may have life. I will renew with you the everlasting covenant.”

Today is the feast of the great Apostle of the Eucharist, Saint Peter Julian Eymard. He proposed for the Church a new way of life centered in the Eucharist. Spiritual indifference in his time swept over the world. His vision was to reignite members of the body of Christ with eucharistic fire. We find his passion for the Eucharist in the vision of Isaiah, who sends out an invitation to the messianic banquet. God calls all people who are without money, food, or water to eat and drink at this great banquet, the meal of the everlasting covenant.

Matthew’s gospel draws us into another great banquet without any preparation. It was offered to a multitude of five thousand men, along with more women and children spontaneously gathered. In this deserted place, people experienced God’s gratuitous presence among them. This vast sea of human sickness and suffering touched the heart of Jesus. First, there were healing miracles; then, there was food to be blessed and distributed. All were satisfied.

Our celebrations of the Eucharist risk having the same spiritual indifference in the world around us. Does the Spirit gather us when we come together, or is it merely routine Mass time? Do we come hungry to consume and become the Word? Does our Eucharist touch the suffering of Christ in our world? The voice of John the Baptist has not been silenced by death but continues to cry out, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world.” Do we expect to witness healing and forgiveness in our time together? How does our communion bring us into communion with others as we are sent to continue this ministry of the kingdom of God?

Let us pray:

Gracious God of our ancestors, you led Peter Julian Eymard like Jacob in times past, on a journey of faith. Under the guidance of your gentle Spirit, Peter Julian discovered the gift of love in the Eucharist, which your son Jesus offered for the hungers of humanity. Grant that we may celebrate this mystery worthily, adore it profoundly, and proclaim it prophetically for your greater glory. Amen.


Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
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About William Fickel, SSS