Becoming the Vision
In Eucharistic celebration it is WE who are changed and realigned without true nature. Taking part in communion does nothing other than transform us into that which we consume. Jean Louis Segundo suggests that we should not just be ‘Gospel consumers’ but ‘Gospel creators’. Perhaps Christians should make continual efforts to authenticate their sacramental life by being not only ‘Eucharistic consumers’ but of necessity ‘Eucharistic creators’ too, committed to establishing a new world order in which the universe itself is seen as the body of God in which the basic needs of all humanity are provided for and the resources of the world justly shared. The fact that that Eucharist is today celebrated in a world where over 1000 million people are regularly hungry asks a profound question of all Eucharistic consumers.
When we eat the bread and drink the wine we are identifying in the most complete way with the cosmos and with the love that created and continues to create it. We symbolically transform the cosmos into our very lives just as the cosmos will one day transform us into its body. Full participation in the Eucharistic celebration should not be entered into lightly. We may not be able to afford the cost of discipleship. Our desire for justice and peace among family of humanity and in the no-human kingdom may not be, as yet, be passionate enough. The original sin of humanity lies in the lack of hunger for community.
In the light of new cosmological insights I am here involved in re visioning theological language and concepts. If I am on the right track, a startlingly fresh and simple image of truth emerges. In the bread and wine of the Eucharistic encounter, in the intimate inter-identification of my personal love-filled body with the wider love-filled body of the cosmos and of and so of God, the three loves (or rather the same love with three different faces) earnestly converse around the fireside of my heart. They swap stories as they revisit the albums of yesterday, affirm the present and discus the journey of destiny with hope and courage. At times such as this, when love comes a-visiting the house of my heart is filled with amazement at the beauty of its guest; It is filled with gratitude at her wild extravagance; It is filled with reverence as its savours the presence of this gracious Lady both. It is a house of blessings; But blessings must travel. And so, in rapture, the chimneys ring with the music of praise. And these tunes of glory waltz their way of wander onto the cosmic dance-floors of the very heavens themselves.
Let me review this image again. The creative love of the universe that has relentlessly inspired the evolutionary journey of its own body, guiding it through the crucial breakthroughs in its quest for human love, negotiating the deadly temptation towards extremes- either those of random and aimless selection or premature closure- urging it along the cosmic milestones of destiny, this tremendous lover is really and truly present in the fruit of her body, this bread and wine will stop she is sacramentally alive and playing, running wild across the countryside of my heart. That this mysterious and lovely story is true we know because that same Love has now revealed it to be so. She has revealed it in one of her favourite children, graced through his human consciousness in an extraordinary manner with the very vision of Love herself. Quite recent in the evolutionary calendar, this cosmic moment of disclosure exploded with the same split second and perfect timing that marked all previous breakthroughs of universal import. Among many stunning insights into the love and meaning of the heart of creation, this revealing vision perceives the Eucharistic dynamic as intrinsic to, expressing, purifying and intensifying the conspiracy of trust and the networking of love, while, like a divine spring, the Holy Spirit writes her dream into tomorrow, singing the silence, filling the empty and birthing the not yet. It will take many a spring of healing before the first and final bright Eucharist at the moment of noon or in the rich fertile darkness of the midnight hour will signal and establish the community of compassion, justice and peace in a cosmos of love.
(Year of the Heart pp139-142)
(In Year of the Heart for the month of June, Daniel writes
‘My intentions in this month’s reflections are to offer an approach ‘from below’, so to speak, from the point of view of the cosmos itself- thus making a new effort to intrinsically link all the elements and all the dimensions that constitute Eucharist celebration. My intention is to offer the reader a vision of the Eucharist that does not threaten orthodox doctrine but rather deepens and enriches the believers participation at the Lords table each week.’ Our weekly reflections for June will all be taken from this chapter.)