Homily – October 24, 2021

The most interesting word in today’s gospel is the word ‘again’. Lord, let me see again, Again suggests that Bartimaeus did at one time have the wonderful gift of sight. We don’t know how he lost it but lost he did and now he is desperate to have that beautiful gift restored. Not even the crowd could keep him quiet.

With his sight restored Bartimaeus would see things with a deeper appreciation. Sometimes we hear things so often that we can lose sight of what is being said.

There was an article in a prominent Catholic magazine that claimed that about 60% of church going Catholics do not believe in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Holy Communion they receive at Mass. Is it a symbol, a memory, a figure of speech?

No it is a reality. Under the appearance of bread and wine Jesus is truly present. After the priest says the words of consecration; take and eat, this is my body, take and drink, this is my blood he sings the words, ‘The mystery of faith’.And you good people answer ; When we eat this bread and drink this cup, we proclaim your death O Lord, until you come again..

Like seeing things so often we can fail to see the depth of their beauty, we can reduce them to the ordinary, the unspectacular.

Hearing the words, this is my body take and eat, this is my blood take and drink we miss the other words of Jesus ’unless you eat the flesh of man and drink his blood, you cannot have life in you. Those who eat my flesh and drink my blood live in me and I live in them and I will raise them up on the last day.

The people who first heard these words of Jesus found them to be a hard saying and many of them walked with him no more…

The presence of Jesus in the Eucharist is a mystery of our faith. A mystery is something of which we cannot know anything; a mystery is something of which we cannot know everything. A mystery of faith, a trust that when Jesus said over the bread ‘this is my body’ and sharing the cup of wine, this is my blood

then bread is more than bread and wine is more than wine; they are the body and blood of Jesus.

A man asked Jesus to heal him and Jesus questioned him, do you believe I can do this. The man simply, honestly replied, ’Lord I believe, help the little faith I.’

As we receive Holy Communion at this Mass maybe our simple prayer of faith might be not, Let me see again but give me the eyesight of faith help me believe again in this wonderful mystery. that in Holy Communion I receive you, body, blood, soul and divinity my bread of life, my promise of eternal life. Lord, increase the little faith I have