- Sunday, 12 August 2018 -
Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Readings of day

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint John 6:41-51.

The Jews murmured about him because he said, "I am the bread that came down from heaven,"
and they said, "Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, 'I have come down from heaven'?"
Jesus answered and said to them, "Stop murmuring among yourselves.
No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day.
It is written in the prophets: 'They shall all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me.
Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father.
Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.
I am the bread of life.
Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died;
this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die.
I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."
Copyright © Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, USCCB

Saint Cyril of Alexandria
"The bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world"

How could humankind, which remained riveted to the earth and subject to death, gain entry to immortality once more? Its flesh had to become assimilated to the life-giving force in God. Now, God the Father's life-giving force is his Word, his only Son, and so it was he whom God sent as Savior and Redeemer... If you put a breadcrumb into oil, water or wine, it at once soaks up their properties. If you place iron into contact with fire it will shortly become full of the fire's energy and, even though by nature it is only iron, will take on the appearance of fire. In the same way, then, God's life-giving Word, by uniting himself to the flesh he assumed, caused it to become life giving. Did he not say: “Whoever believes in me has eternal life. I am the bread of life.” And again: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live for ever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh... Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.” So then, by eating the flesh of Christ, the Savior of us all, and drinking his blood we have life in ourselves, we become one with him, we remain in him and he in us. Therefore it is for him to enter within us through the Holy Spirit in a way fitting to God and to mingle with our body, after a fashion, through the holy flesh and precious blood we receive under the forms of bread and wine as our life-giving blessing. Indeed..., God has exercised his condescension towards our weakness and placed all his life-force into the elements of bread and wine, which are thus endowed with the spirit of his own life. So believe in it without hesitation for our Lord himself has clearly said: “This is my body” and “This is my blood”.

Commentary on St. Luke's Gospel, 22