Corpus Christi: Thanksgiving in June

Corpus Christi: Thanksgiving in June June 9, 2023

Priest Elevates the Eucharist: Corpus Cristi
Corpus Christi – Priest Elevates the Eucharist (Photo by A. Laflamme)

Happy Feast of Corpus Christi! It’s Thanksgiving in June!

Corpus Christi is the day that we celebrate the true presence of Jesus’ body in the Eucharist.

Source and Summit

The Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian life” (CCC 1324, LG 11). This idea has been affirmed over and over, but I love this image.

I picture a mountain with a stream.

Source – the clean water flows from the source and provides life to the everyone and everything below.

Summit – the goal and peak of the adventure where there is peace, beauty, and clarity.

True Thanksgiving – Ευχαριστια

Eucharist, translated from Greek, means thanksgiving to God.

It is interesting that Eucharist is a term for both the consecrated host – Jesus, and the celebration that brings forth this miracle – the Mass.

An act of Eucharist (the Mass) provides us the Eucharist (Jesus) which we are then Eucharist (thankful to God) for.

This is a beautiful cycle of true Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving in June!

This Feast of Corpus Christi, let’s remember all that we are thankful for, especially while at Mass.

Gratitude as a Virtue

After my time as a missionary, I attended a final retreat meant to help us reflect on the experience and prepare for a big life change, going from full time missionary into the secular culture at large. My takeaway from that weekend was that gratitude is a virtue.

The priest giving the talk, Fr. Brendan, explained that we can have two extreme attitudes when moving on in a life change:

  1. That time of life was so difficult, and I didn’t like it that much anyway, so I’m glad to be leaving. 
  2. I am going to miss this so much! I promise I am going to keep in touch with all of these people forever.

Essentially writing off the past few years, or clinging to the past and not moving on at all.

The Aristotelian Mean between the two extremes is this concept of gratitude. Father used the very catchy phrase “having an Attitude of Gratitude“, which made his talk stick all of these years later.

Attitude of Gratitude

Being grateful for each individual experience you’ve had is the proper disposition for looking at the past, but it’s not easy. Like any virtue, there is a balance that needs to be checked regularly.

Am I leaning too far one way or the other? Towards writing off, or clinging?

Gratitude sees the greater purpose of each moment. It cherishes the good, and learns from the bad.

Celebrating Corpus Christi: Thanksgiving in June

As I write this, much of the world has already celebrated the Feast of Corpus Christi on Thursday. However, many of us are celebrating it on Sunday. So I say, we can make a weekend of it.

To celebrate, go to the Eucharist, the source and summit of the Faith. Have an attitude of gratitude, and go to Mass prepared to thank God for all that you’re grateful for.

Receive Jesus in communion (com- union, or “with” union), physically united with Him. He is the source.

This kind of Thanksgiving doesn’t have to be just one day either. There are Masses celebrated daily around the world. There are also adoration chapels scattered across the country where we can visit Jesus in the Eucharist to spend time with Him.

As long as we have the Eucharist, we are giving thanks!

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