This past Sunday, we Catholics celebrated the feast of Corpus Christi, the Body and Blood of Christ. This is a celebration of the gift of the Eucharist in which Jesus gives us his Body and Blood as our food and drink.
In Benedictine Daily Prayer, there is a reading from St. Thomas Aquinas for the feast which begins:
The only Son of God wanted to have us share his divinity, and therefore he took our nature to himself: by becoming human, he would make humanity divine.We have a God who loves us and gives us Himself in His life, death and resurrection, and in the Eucharist – so that we can share His Life.
Here the feast was accompanied by processions in the streets. In Santa Rosa de Copán they made carpets of colored sawdust. In Dulce Nombre de María they walked around the main square and stopped at four altars to pray and reflect on the Eucharist and the challenges for the family.
The Mass in Dulce Nombre began with a hymn from the Salvadoran Campesino Mass:
Vamos todos al banquete
a la mesa de la Creación;
cada cual con su taburete
tiene un puesto y una misión.
Dios invita a todos los pobres
a este mesa común por la fe,
donde no hay acaparadores
y a nadie falta el con qué.
Let us all go to the banquet
to the table of creation:
every one with his own stool
has a place and a mission.
God invites all the poor
to this common table by faith
where there are none who hoard
and nobody lacks something more than tortillas.
The Eucharist for me is connected intimately with the hungers of the world – it reminds me that as God calls all to the heavenly banquet, he calls all of us to share so that there is a place at the table for everyone. (In 2002 the US bishops wrote a very fine reflection on hunger called A Place at the Table)
And so I was very happy to see the ecological oven in the parish which was made during a workshop last week, led by Marco. Eight people – men and women – took part in the three day workshop in the parish and eleven took part in the workshop in the remote village of Zapote de Santa Rosa.
Last Saturday Marco went to the community where there is a small project to raise pigs and pass on the piglets to other families. Padre Efraín told me that the sow gave birth to thirteen piglets. Since the people were not sure about what to do they called Marco on cell phones and he led them through the birthing process over a cell phone. What an interesting use of technology. I have to smile thinking about this.
The parish will have another workshop to train more people to make silos the first week of June. Padre Efraín would also like to begin helping people to start small family gardens to diversify the diets of the people in the parish. For a number of reasons many people limit their diets to beans and corn tortillas and a few eggs.