Eucharist Miracle Eucharist Miracles

Homily of H.E. Mons. Claudio Gatti of November 5, 2006

1st reading: Dt 6:2-6; Psalm 17; 2nd reading: Heb 7:23-28; Gospel: Mk 12:28-34

I address my thoughts, my affection and my words, in a particular way, to the two creatures who will shortly receive Baptism: Miriam and Ismaele Maria. They will understand neither a gesture nor a word of what I will do and say, but it is the task of their parents, at the right time, to remember what we all adults have experienced. It is above all a joy for me to welcome them, in the name of the whole Church, into the Church itself. If we want to make a comparison between how a child is treated, accepted and considered when he is born, by the State and by God, we see that there is a considerable difference. The State acknowledges that a creature was born and subsequently destines him to be subjected to rights and duties. Instead, God acts according to his nature, with love. He welcomes this creature where he has already infused the soul through his direct intervention and makes him similar to Himself in the grace of Baptism, attributing, first of all, the wonderful appellation of son or daughter of God. His love does not end only in calling or allowing men to call themselves children of God, but make sure that this sonship, which postulates a paternity at the origin and it is that of God, can be lived in the best way. Providentially, for us everything falls within the plans of divine Providence and today's Gospel really emphasizes the importance of love. One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him: “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices. ”When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him: “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions. (Mk 12:28-34). The love that must be given to God and neighbor is the love that is subjected, from the early instant of his life, a creature born on Earth and will live all the years that we wish long and happy, so that at the right time, this happiness is strengthened, transformed, improved by the happiness of Heaven. According to God - and what matters is his judgment - men are called to live in the happiness of Earth and Heaven. If we are unable to be happy, and each of us can question himself and his own experience and ask his conscience why he has not been happy in different situations of his life, you can find the answer in your heart: not because God has accepted to love you, but because men did not love you. By saying men I embrace all human relationships. These children are lucky because they have a family that has welcomed them with love. The parents poured out, even before they began to live, before their little heart began to beat in the womb, on Miriam, by Domenico and Federica, and on Ismaele Maria by Fabrizio and Giulia, so much love that would be enough to satisfy the needs for other children and we wish them so, if this is the will of God. They are lucky because they are loved, they were loved before birth, they are loved now when they are small and, of course, they will be loved when they grow older. We wish them that they can grow and be healthy, bursting in all its potential in the physical and spiritual field. These parents are responsible for this: taking care of the body, taking care of the soul and being concerned, as they grow, that their soul may always be fruit of God, enjoying the union with God. Sometimes we pride ourselves on having relationships with more or less famous people, with VIPs, but even if we are the most unknown person on Earth, but live a strong and harmonious union with God can boast of having the best and most qualified relationship. What does it mean to be friends with the powerful and then be disunited with God? The Mass that I am going to celebrate has as the intention that the grace, which will soon enter their soul and cancel the original sin and put them into the family of God, may never cease. Today the great Paul comes to meet us again, reminding us that Christ is a priest and his priesthood will never set, so it is the person of the Bishop who instills on these children the virtues of love, faith and hope, but I am not the one giving the grace, it is God who uses me as an instrument and as a minister to transform these creatures. Apparently, when they leave the Church at the end of the celebration, we will not notice anything different in them, compared to when they entered, but God does. Then God will turn with an eye of predilection and will repeat to each of them the same words that he said to his son at the moment of Baptism: “You are my beloved son, in you I find - and this is the wish - my gratification and my satisfaction". What is God's gratification, what is its manifestation? In making sure that every man can call him father and He can call every creature, son. Here is the relationship that will begin in a few minutes. Baptism is an exceptional gift, it is an immense grace, what disturbs me is that, at times, it is celebrated with the indifference and insensitivity of people. Instead here I am saying: "Look, do not let yourself be influenced by external appearances in any way, go inside reality and enjoy because in a few minutes God will perform, even if externally this will not be visible, such a transformation, we can even say a transfiguration from an opaque being to a luminous being, by grace, from a being distant from God to a being united to God, from those who did not belong to the family of God to those who can instead call God "Father". Are you aware of it? This is Baptism, this is the greatness of the celebration we are performing. I cannot forget the one who prayed so much for these children and I am referring to the Mother of the Eucharist. She watched over the months of pregnancy, a quieter one for one of them less quiet for the other, but what matters is the final result, what you have in your arms right now. I can assure you that Our Lady’s maternal mantle enveloped you, especially the mothers, at the moment their creatures were born, so that they could have the joy of holding, close to their heart, those who are now present and were hosted in their womb for nine months. The parents are the ones who must thank God in a particular way today, the parents are the ones who must take on the responsibilities of being educators and teachers as well. Next to the figure of the father and the mother, even if in a more downsized reality, must be placed the godparents who are not just those who have to make the most expensive gifts compared to the others; this is not the godfather’s duty in Catholic ideology and theology. The godfather and the godmother are those who must accompany the parents by example, testimony, word, encouragement, and sometimes, if necessary, even with a sweet reproach because they too are responsible for the education. Otherwise, the presence of the godparents is useless in this celebration. You too, godparents, must feel responsible, must feel to be part of the family of Ismaele Maria and Miriam in a wider way, never forget that today, you too, godparents and godmothers, take on your responsibilities and must carry them forward in harmony with the children’s parents. To all the others, relatives, friends, acquaintances, I ask, on behalf of the parents, to live this moment as you are living it now: in silence, in recollection and in prayer. Ask God, and God will grant them, all those gifts and graces that they will need in life; it is a heritage that today begins to be consistent and the children will have to use it during their existence. You must be more concerned about offering prayer and assistance than giving gifts. Those are also important, but the responsibility of those who make the gift ends in paying the receipt and everything then returns as before. Instead, you all must feel responsible, parents, godparents, relatives, friends, acquaintances, because you have heard what Our Lady said: all of you should feel like godparents and godmothers of these two creatures and this is to raise responsibility. Now, by placing them under the mantle of the Mother of the Eucharist, we begin the rite of Baptism and the only ones who can speak, in addition to the Bishop, are the children. Please observe total silence, complete recollection, affectionate participation.