Twilight Twitches

fetscherDear Family,
Today brings us two events to ponder and cele¬brate. The first, of course, is the second exclamation point after our Easter celebrations, today’s celebration of The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ. (You can see why I prefer say simply, ‘Corpus Christi.’)

The first exclamation point was last Sunday’s celebration of the Trinity. As we heard, the feast isn’t about sacred mathematics, how three are in one, and one has three. (Sounds like an advertisement for oil.)

Rather, that feast helps us remember the deep¬est of mysteries: the love of the persons of the Trinity for each other and how we are enfolded in that love. (If you haven’t heard me say it recently, I’d like to throw in a personal thought. For me, the Mystery of the Trinity’s love is not a “How” issue, but a “why” issue. Why does God love us that much? Technically, it’s because when He sees us, He sees His Son. I know I don’t want Him to be too disappointed when he looks my way. I keep thinking, “Jesus has my back,” no matter my mess-ups. That’s a lot of love.

Today we celebrate the extraordinary phenomenon of Jesus making that love more real than we could possibly have imagined, our second exclamation point to the Easter season.

“Take and eat... Take and drink.”

The gifts of bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ. We receive the Food of Foods. Could God’s love have been expressed any more intimately than in eating something, the means of retaining our very existence?

Today, at the end of the eleven o’clock Mass, we will have a special Eucharistic Blessing for the four corners of our little universe. It will be a heartfelt expression that a longer Corpus Christi procession signifies, namely, the Lord’s blessing being spread throughout the earth.

The second of today’s special events is the 77th anniversary of D-Day. I realize that anybody under 40 might well ask, “What’s D-Day?” There are historical moments that need to be remembered.

I was two months short of my third birthday on the momentous day of June 6, 1944, when the Allies invaded Normandy Beach, D-Day. My basic memory of a WWII event is V-J Day, victory over Japan, which came on September 2, 1945.

On that day, I remember all the boats and trains and cars and all the New Jersey refineries blowing whistles and horns. We lived in Gram’s house on Richmond Terrace overlooking the Kill van Kull which separates Staten Island and Bayonne, New Jersey. I stood in the arch formed by two intertwined lilac bushes, entranced. The sounds went on for hours.

The Longest Day and Saving Private Ryan described many events of WWII including D-Day. Now that I’m a little older than four, I think I have some sense that watching a well-made movie about heroes can surely blunt one’s senses. God forbid we ever lose a realistic sense of the horrors of war, and that specific day. That’s how D-Day became part of my memories.

Dad worked at the Standard Oil refinery during the war. I think he was one of the “essential workers” of his time. He used to remark that he really wanted to join the Navy. Maybe with 2 1/2 kids, God was saying, “Work the refinery.”

Another memory from that time was getting to spend a few days with Gram by myself. We would walk to the corner butcher where she would buy me one hot dog. She put it in a buttered piece of bread. Nirvana! I got it for being such a great kid. (If you believe that, I have property in the glades...)

In Jesus,
sign frjim

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