Tag Archives: flesh and blood

the same Christ

In Holy Communion we have Christ under the appearance of bread. In our work we find him under the appearance of flesh and blood. It is the same Christ. — Mother Teresa

This past Saturday’s blog post (entitled a good question) focused on Shane Claiborne’ s question about the dichotomy of worshiping a homeless man on Sunday and ignoring a homeless man on Monday. Shortly after posting that blog I came across this quote from Mother Teresa. Both quotes heavily influenced my Communion message on Sunday morning.

As Christians we believe that when the Communion elements of bread and wine are consecrated they become the body and blood of Christ. We call Communion a Holy Sacrament because we believe it is a divine means of grace. Christ comes to us in the form of bread and wine.

Mother Teresa tells us that as Christ comes to us in the bread and wine on Sunday, He comes to us in the guise of one of the least of these every day during the week.

Every opportunity we have to draw closer to the oppressed, the poor, the hungry, the homeless, those in prison, and those despised by society is then a true means of grace.

And that brings us back to Shane Claiborne’s question: “How can we worship a homeless man on Sunday and ignore him on Monday?”

It really is a good question, isn’t it?

 

 

“And flesh and blood so cheap!”

 

Happier were those pierced by the sword than those pierced by hunger, whose life drains away, deprived of the produce of the field. – Lamentations 4:9

The words of the Prophet Jeremiah echo loudly today as we witness the brutality and senseless violence in South Sudan. The echoes can be heard in the headlines as the world’s leading relief providers have already started warning of an even uglier tragedy beginning to unfold in that young and reeling nation.

Famine is coming to South Sudan. Unless immediate response is mounted we are being told to expect the starvation, not of dozens of children, not of  hundreds of children, not of thousands of children, but to prepare for the unnecessary death of tens of thousands of innocent South Sudanese children.  These are the children who will  starve to death within the next six months, pierced by hunger, unless we act to prevent it.

Already malnourished and weakened, these children cannot survive the agony of their life draining away as it will during the hunger season. Once the rains begin the hope of these children, the life of these children, will wash away.

I am reminded of the words of Thomas Hood, the 18th century English poet. In The Song of the Shirt he wrote:

“Oh, God! That bread should be so dear!
And flesh and blood so cheap!”