Fr. Stephen Van Lal Than

This is a painting entitled “The Virgin Adoring the Host,” created by Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres in 1852. Public Domain via the Metropolitan Museum of Art (OSV News Photo/courtesy Metropolitan Museum of Art)

‘The Body of Christ’ – Amen!


St. John Paul II said, “There is a profound analogy between the Fiat which Mary said in reply to the angel and the Amen, which every believer says when receiving the body of the Lord.” Mary’s yes and statement, “Let it be done unto me according to your word” is analogous to our Amen at Mass; we too are saying “Yes, I believe” and “your will be done in and through me.”

In our Acts 2:42 groups this month, we are reflecting on the document by St. John Paul II, titled “Ecclesia de Eucharistia,” meaning in English, “The Church draws her life from the Eucharist.” The section we are focusing on is Mary’s words and actions. He suggests that Mary says to us, “Do not waver; trust in the words of my Son. If he was able to change water into wine, he can also turn bread and wine into his body and blood, and through this mystery bestow on believers the living memorial of his Passover, thus becoming the bread of life.”

How great a mystery! How great the gift of God we receive in the body and blood of Jesus at every Mass! The National Eucharistic Revival has a mission and vision. The mission is “to renew the Church by enkindling a living relationship with the Lord Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.” And the vision is “to inspire a movement of Catholics across the United States who are healed, converted, formed, and unified by an encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist – and who are then sent out on mission for the life of the world.” This is a huge vision led by those who are Healed, Converted, Formed, and Unified.

How are you allowing the Holy Spirit to heal, comfort, form and unify you and through you to be an instrument of God’s loving presence in your world today? Where are you finding a vibrant, holy, and compassionate Catholic community? Are you open to being a lifelong learner about how God wants to live in and through you as a “sparkle” of God’s light in this dark world. St. Augustine reminds us that, “we are called to become who we receive.” This requires openness to the power and transformation of the Holy Spirit. We are called to be transformed more and more into the very heart of God. How are you finding this transformation in your walk with the Lord today?

Our Acts 2:42 groups will discuss the following three questions this month and then listen to Bishop Medley’s reflection, which you can find on our diocesan YouTube (, titled “Acts 2:42 – Video 6 – Mary as Model.”

1) What comes to mind as you imagine Mary as the first tabernacle?

2) How does our Amen correlate to Mary’s yes to the angel?

3) Comment on Mary’s intimacy with Jesus and our invitation to do the same. Discuss with a spouse or friend.


Jeff Andrini

Dr. Jeff Andrini is the director of the Office of Evangelization and Discipleship, and can be reached at [email protected].

Originally printed in the February 2024 issue of The Western Kentucky Catholic.

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Publisher |  Bishop William F. Medley
Editor |  Elizabeth Wong Barnstead
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