This is the bread come down from heaven
For 700 years or so, the Church has celebrated the Feast of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, also known as Corpus Christi.
In the First Reading, Moses reminds the people of Israel that it is God who ensured they did not die of hunger and thirst in the desert, by providing them with manna and water. They are not to forget their faithful Lord who has always guided them.
The Psalm praises the Lord for sending wheat to feed his people, and his Word to feed their spirit.
In his Letter to the Corinthians (Second Reading), St Paul confirms the intimate link between the body and blood of Christ and the blessing-cup and bread of the Eucharist. This one bread shared by all has a unifying effect.
In the Gospel, we find Jesus instructing the crowds after the feeding of the 5000. He seeks to explain the difference between the food needed to keep our body in good health and the bread ‘come down from heaven’, which is his body. It will feed them spiritually. They will draw life from his body and blood, just as he draws life from his Father.
Christ is our food and drink.