Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, July 25
Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I began last week with the topic of “ecclesiology,” the
study of the Church. The Church is the “Bride of Christ”
and is “Mother” to us. The Church is the “Body of
Christ.” Christ has taken on our human flesh so that He
could unite our fallen humanity to His Divinity so that
we could be restored to our original dignity. By Jesus
making us His bride, bathing us in a bath of new birth,
the Father will see and love in us what He sees and loves
in His Son. Then what Jesus endows His Church with, as
revealed in the Holy Scriptures, the Church, as Mother,
gives birth to us and gathers us together. The womb of
the Church is the baptismal font and the shepherds
designated by the Lord, dispense the grace through her
sacramental life. This sets the table for us to be fed as
God’s children in the Holy Eucharist. Last Sunday, as we
concluded Mark’s Gospel, Jesus sees the crowd of
people following Him as “sheep without a shepherd; and
he began to teach them many things.” This sets the stage
for the “Bread of Life” discourse that we begin today
from John’s Gospel chapter 6. What makes us the Body
of Christ is the very food that Jesus is for us in the Most
Holy Eucharist. Jesus shepherds us with His teachings.
We are given what we need to be made ready to receive
the reality of God’s Word, His very Flesh and Blood.
When our faith leads us to a full embracing of what our
Mother teaches us, made into the Bride of Christ, then
we become what we eat, the Body of Christ. Because the
Eucharist that makes us Church in the truest sense of the
word, that is to say, the Body of Christ, not only because
we receive the Body of Christ as food, but because
Christ has left us His Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity
and He resides in the Tabernacle. What we begin today
in the sixth chapter of John’s Gospel sets the table for the
Last Supper and His death on Calvary. John’s Gospel
does not have the “Institution Narrative,” that is the last
supper account with the bread and wine. John gives us
the scene of the washing of the feet. We get the
“Institution Narrative” from the Gospels of Mathew,
Mark and Luke. What John gives us, which will be the
Gospel that will take us to August 22nd, gives us
preparation and understanding of the Last Supper and
Calvary, and thus teaches what the Eucharistic
celebration is for us. When Jesus told Peter – “Upon you
I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not
prevail against it” – what force, what power could defeat
the power of hell, but Jesus Christ, whose Body and
Blood we share and possess, which makes us, the Body
of Christ – The Church.


Saint Joseph, protector of the Church – Pray for us.




Fr, Steven Guitron