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Angelus Address: On the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Full Text)

June 03, 2018. ‘Nourished by the Body and Blood of Christ, We Are Assimilated to Him; We Receive His Love in Us to Share It with Others’.

Here is a ZENIT translation of the address Pope Francis gave June 3, 2018, before and after praying the midday Angelus with those gathered in St. Peter’s Square.

* * *

Before the Angelus:

 Dear Brothers and Sisters, good morning!

Celebrated today in many countries — among them, Italy –, is the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ or, according to the more known Latin expression, of Corpus Domini. The Gospel reports Jesus’ words to us, pronounced during the Last Supper with His disciples: “Take, this is my body.” Then: “This is my blood of the Covenant, which is poured out for many” (Mark 14:22.24). In fact, because of that testament of love, the Christian community gathers today, Sunday, and every day, around the Eucharist, Sacrament of Christ’s redeeming Sacrifice. And, attracted to His real presence, Christians adore and contemplate Him through the humble sign of bread become His Body.

Every time we celebrate the Eucharist, through this very sober and at the same time solemn Sacrament, we experience the New Covenant, which realizes in fullness the communion between God and us. And, in as much as participants in this Covenant, we, though little and poor, collaborate to build history as God wills. Therefore, every Eucharistic celebration, while constituting a public act of worship of God, refers us back to the life and concrete events of our existence. While nourished by the Body and Blood of Christ, we are assimilated to Him; we receive in us His love, not to hold it jealously, but rather to share it with others. This is the Eucharistic logic.  In it, in fact, we contemplate Jesus as broken and given bread, blood poured out for our salvation. It’s a presence that, like fire, burns in us our egotistic attitudes, purifies us of the tendency to give only when we have received and enkindles in us the desire to be also, in union with Jesus, broken bread and shed blood for brothers.

Therefore, the feast of Corpus Domini is a mystery of attraction to Christ and of transformation into Him. And it’s a school of concrete love, patient and sacrificed, as Jesus on the cross. It teaches us to be more welcoming and available to all those who are in search of understanding, of help, of encouragement and who are marginalized and alone. The presence of Jesus alive in the Eucharist is like a door, an open door between the church and the street, between faith and history, between the city of God and the city of man.

The processions with the Most Holy Sacrament are the expression of popular Eucharistic piety, which in today’s Solemnity are taking place in many cities and countries. This evening at Ostia, I will also — as Blessed Paul VI did 50 years ago — will celebrate Mass, which will be followed by a procession with the Most Holy Sacrament. I invite all to take part, also spiritually, through radio and television. May Our Lady accompany us on this day.

[Original text: Italian]  [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

 © Libreria Editrice Vatican

 After the Angelus:

 Dear Brothers and Sisters, good morning!

Proclaimed Blessed in Naples yesterday was Sister Mary Crucified of Divine Love, in the world Mary Gargani, Founder of the Sisters Apostles of the Sacred Heart. A spiritual daughter of Padre Pio, she was a true apostle in the school and parish field. May her example and her intercession sustain her spiritual daughters and all educators. All of you, applaud the new Blessed: we greet her!

I join my Brother Bishops of Nicaragua in expressing grief for the grave violence, with dead and wounded, carried out by armed groups to suppress social protests. I pray for the victims and their families. The Church is always for dialogue, but this requires active commitment to respect freedom and, first of all, life. I pray that all violence may cease and that conditions may be ensured for taking up dialogue again as soon as possible.

I greet you all, pilgrims from Italy and from various countries, in particular, those from Helsinki, Huelva (Spain), Peuerbach (Austria) and from Croatia. I greet the faithful of Caturano and Palermo, as well as the “Siderinox” society of Abbiategrasso and the Confirmation candidates of Corridonia.

A special greeting goes to the faithful gathered today at Sotto il Monte, with the Bishop of Bergamo, on the anniversary of Saint John XXIII’s death. May the peregrinatio in Bergamo land of the mortal remains of this Pontiff, so loved by the people, be able to inspire in all generous good resolutions.

And I wish you all a happy Sunday. Please, don’t forget to pray for me. Have a good lunch and goodbye!

[Original text: Italian]  [ZENIT’s translation by Virginia M. Forrester]

© Libreria Editrice Vatican