Posts Tagged ‘6-18-2017’

Become What You Receive 6-18-2017

Sunday, June 18th, 2017

In the November 1998 issue of Food & Wine magazine, writer Gerri Hirshey tells the story of her grandmother’s “special ministry” to her family:
“As a child, I often watched my tiny Italian grandmother, Geraldine, board a city bus cradling a mason jar of hot minestrone. This meant that someone – Uncle Carmine, Aunt Antoinette – was down. It didn’t matter whether they were felled by the flu, a feisty gallbladder or the evil eye. Having heard the alarm, Nonnie (our name for grandma) tied on an apron and started banging soup pots.
“For nearly half a century, Nonnie was the Designated Soup Carrier (DSC) for a sprawling Neapolitan network of family and friends in Stamford, CT. Somewhere between a field medic and a shrink, a DSC is found in many cultures and is usually female. In the midst of crisis, her prescriptives are basic and sustaining: Stop a minute. Taste this. Life is good.”
Nonnie’s daughter Rose – Gerri’s mother – eventually became the DSC for her brothers and sisters and their families; now, granddaughter Gerri has assumed the duties of DSC for her generation. The Designated Soup Carrier’s in Gerri Hirshey’s family model Jesus’ vision for the Sacrament of the Eucharist. Nourished and sustained by the food we have received, we become nourishment and sustenance for others. Out of love, Christ gives us himself in bread and asks us to become, in our love, bread for others – Designated Christ Carriers (DCC).
Here are several examples:
A. He was old, tired, and sweaty, pushing his homemade cart; stopping now and then to poke around somebody’s garbage. I wanted to tell him about Eucharist, but the look in his eyes, the despair in his face, told me to forget it, so, I smiled and I said “Hi” and I gave him Eucharist.
B. She lived alone, her husband dead, her family gone, as she talked at you – not to you, words, endless words. So I listened and gave her Eucharist.
C. He sat across my desk – very nervous. He finally said it, “I have AIDS” – by God’s grace, I did not say, how did you get AIDS?” – I said “How can I help?” I gave him Eucharist.

I close:
As you, as we – say our Amen today at communion time – let us remember and take to heart these words – “We receive Eucharist – to become Eucharist for others. Let us remember and take to heart this challenge – the work of proclaiming God’s reconciling love belongs to every one of us, whether we collect taxes, teach math, manage a Fortune 500 company or shine shoes for a living – may we possess the greatness of spirit and generosity of heart to be ministers of the Gospel – Designated Christ Carriers, in whatever place we are in, whatever time God has given us. Amen. “We receive Eucharist – to become Eucharist for others.”