Dr. R. Jared Staudt, PhD
Director of Content

Corpus Christi: Jesus’s Complete Gift

God became man so that we might enter into the life of God. We do not approach God from the outside, as Jesus draws us into his own relationship with the Father. He came to make the Father known and to enable us to become his sons. In giving his flesh for the life of the world, Jesus holds nothing back, making a complete gift of himself to us and making us one with him in the communion we have with him in the Eucharist. 

Jesus makes himself one flesh with us, making a complete gift of self to us. Communion means to become one and this is what Jesus offers every time we go to Mass. It’s so easy to take this gift for granted but it is a truly divine one and should continue to amaze us. When we consume the body or blood of Christ, we receive the whole Christ in both his humanity and divinity. During communion, we are drawn into God’s own trinitarian life.

This gift is so complete in what it offers and in its effects that it has the power to transform us into Christ. We are meant to become sons in the Son, conformed to the image of Christ, members of his mystical body, and enlivened by his Holy Spirit. The Eucharist makes us one body and Spirit with Jesus so that with him we can love and honor the Father as a true son. 

Jesus told his disciples, “Whoever sees me, see the Father” (John 14:9). His humanity became the means of revealing the hidden life of God in the world. The Jews stumbled over his human nature and could not recognize the Father through it. It can be the same with the Eucharist. Jesus continues to manifest his divine life in the world through it. There is a tradition during Mass for the priest to look at the Eucharistic host during the Our Father, because Jesus continues to be one through whom we see the Father. When we recognize Jesus’s hidden presence under the appearance of bread and wine, we can continue to approach the Father through him. 

Jesus wants us to manifest the Father’s life and love in the world as well. This is why he feeds us with his own life so that transferred by his grace, we can become an icon of God. We should offer to others what we have received as a gift. The Eucharist fills us with the fullness of Jesus’s life so that we can pass on his divine life imitating Jesus’s sacrificial love and drawing others to him.

Dr. Staudt serves as Director of Content for Exodus and as an Instructor for the Lay Division of St. John Vianney Seminary. He is the author of How the Eucharist Can Save Civilization (TAN), Restoring Humanity: Essays on the Evangelization of Culture (Divine Providence Press) and The Beer Option: Brewing a Catholic Culture Yesterday & Today (Angelico Press). He holds a Ph.D. in systematic theology from Ave Maria University and B.A. and M.A. in Catholic Studies from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, MN). He and wife, Anne, have six children and he is a Benedictine oblate.