Take, Bless, Break, Share
By: Sr. Jan
The First Reading from the Book of Kings speaks of Elisha telling the man to give the barley loaves to the people stating: “They shall eat & there shall be some left over.” The Gospel from John, in a similar story, tells of Jesus asking Philip where he can get enough food for the crowd. In both situations, the bread that was shared turned out to be more than the people could eat.
These Eucharistic stories bring back memories from my retreat with Fr. Dan Crosby, OFM Cap., this past May. Father’s theme was EUCHARIST. In his opening comments he asked us to: Believe in the Eucharist, BE Devoted to the Eucharist, Participate in the Eucharist until we become what we receive. St. Augustine in the 300’s reminded us that we have to know what we receive. St. John Chrysostom told us the table is loaded with golden chalices and vessels, and we ignore our neighbor. Sister Jan adds, “What good is the gold on the altar if it stays there?”
This retreat continued to reflect on the real meaning of Eucharist, namely, to Take, Bless, Break and Share. These four verbs help us understand the depth of love that happens in Eucharist and how we live these words.
TAKE: As children we wanted to be chosen or taken when setting up
games on the playground. Sometimes we were the last one chosen. Jesus
looks at us and takes us; our goodness is all he sees even though each of us is flawed. He chooses each of us. He cherishes us. Do we allow ourselves to be taken? If we do, this is the beginning of transformation.
BLESS: We are a blessing from the inside going outside our preciousness is beyond the surface. Jesus kneels at our feet in the Eucharist. He gazes with love at us, seeing how blessed we are. In this gaze we are transformed by his love.
BREAK: We need to accept that we are taken and blessed with the need to be broken in order to share with others. For example, a fresh loaf of bread is only good and nourishing when it is broken and eaten or broken and shared with others. Let myself be broken for others.
SHARE: Go now to share the Taking, Blessing, Breaking Eucharist with others. We are meant to be stretched and pushed beyond self. Each of us receives an equal share of the fullness of Christ with the responsibility of sharing it equally with others. It is all about allowing ourselves to be transformed by Christ in the Eucharist.