In today’s second reading, St. Paul warns us of autoimmune disease. An autoimmune disease, as you may know, is when the body attacks itself, one of its own parts. It’s a self-destructive disease. Last week we heard Paul tell the Corinthians, who had been squabbling over who had the better gifts, that all these different gifts come from one Spirit. One Spirit, many gifts.
Today Paul continues the same theme with the analogy of the body. The Church is like a body, with different parts—eyes and ears and limbs and so on—and if jealousy between these parts enters in and the eye stops seeing because it wants to hear, and the legs stop walking because they want to see, and the lungs stop breathing because they want to walk, then pretty soon instead of a body you have a corpse. It is one of the most important metaphors in the Bible, and this morning I’d like to focus on two implications of this metaphor. The first is that bodies share common goods. And the second is that the Body of Christ is meant to be alive.Continue reading “One Body, many witnesses”