CBCI Standing Committee Meeting, Bangalore 2017
Homily of H.E. Giambattista Diquattro
CBCI Standing Committee Meeting
Holy Mass on 4 May 2017, Bangalore
Great indeed is the Son’s dignity; the Father draws men, and the Son raises them up.
This is not division of work, but an equality of love, of mercy and of power. Our Lord then shows the way in which the father draws. It is written in the Prophets, and they shall all be taught of God. Our Lord shows the excellence of faith, that it cannot be learnt from men, or by teaching of man, but only from God Himself. The Master sits dispensing His truth, pouring out his doctrine. He wishes to enter our lives and “fill us with his presence of grace”.
All the men of that Kingdom shall be taught of God; they shall hear nothing from men, yet what they understand is given them from within; from within is light and revelation.
We do not come to Christ by running, or walking, but by believing, not by the motion of the body, but the will of the mind. We are drawn by our will. But what is it to be drawn by the will? Delight you in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desire. There is a certain craving of the heart to which the heavenly bread is pleasant. Human beings all over the world today need nourishment. And this nourishment is not just to satisfy physical hunger. All these hungers find their satisfaction in one thing “the bread that comes from above”. Being delighted with truth, happiness, joy, love, justice, eternal life, all which is Christ. Have the bodily senses their pleasures and has not the soul her attractions? Jesus himself is the living bread that gives life to the world.
So the Father draws to the Son those who believe in the Son. For the Father begat the Son equal to Himself; and who thinks and believes really and seriously that He in Whom he believes is equal to the Father, him – the Father – draws to the Son.
He drew Saint Peter who said “You are the Christ, the son of the living God”, to whom accordingly it was told: “for flesh and blood has not revealed it to you, but my Father who is in heaven”.
That revelation is the drawing. For what does the soul more long after than truth and presence of God?
The Eucharist actualizes the covenant that sanctifies, purifies and unites us in the marvelous Communion with God. Thus we know that the Eucharist is not only a reward for the good but also the strength for the weak and for the sinners.
But here men hunger, there they will be filled. Therefore the Lord adds: “And I will raise him up at the last day”. As if he said, he shall be filled with that, for which he now thirsts, at the resurrection of the dead; for I will raise him up”.
In the Eucharist, Jesus Christ is always raising us up, by renewing His gift of self, which He made on the cross because His whole life is an act of total sharing of self out of love.
So the Father draws to the Son, by the works which Jesus did. Communion with the Lord is necessarily a communion with our fellow brothers and sisters. In the Communion the Lord makes us walk on his road; that of service, of sharing, of giving.
Jesus speaks in the silence of the mystery of the Eucharist and reminds us each time that following him means going out of ourselves and making our lives not something we possess, but a gift to him and to others.
And all that are taught of God come to the Son, because they have heard and learnt from the Father of the Son.
We have not to do with the carnal ear, but the ear of the heart. For there is the Son Himself, the Word by which the Father teaches, and together with Him the Holy Spirit, the operations of the Persons being inseparable from each other.
So then the Father taught, the Son spoke, and the Lord himself explains the matter: we have never seen the Father, and how then can we have learnt from the Father? Jesus Christ says to us: hear the Father in me. And is not the mere passing sound, but that which remains with the speaker and draws the hearer.
The love of God, the love of Christ, is not a matter of the past but is meant to remain alive and present in the heart of each person, in the heart of the Church, in the Eucharist the gift of God for us.
Living in communion with Christ is anything but remaining passive and aloof from everyday life, on the contrary, it increasingly puts us in relationship with the men and women of our time, to offer them the concrete sign of the presence of Christ.