All Are Annointed

In the Old Testament, we read of prophets singling out individuals like David and anointing them—empowering them to perform their Divine Mission. I believe that Jesus revolutionized the way God empowers individuals, just as he revolutionized public worship. And there is a connection between the two that has been overlooked.

During Jesus’ time, the Paschal Lamb could only be slain in public worship in the Temple at Jerusalem. Jesus revolutionized public worship by creating a celebration in a Eucharistic Community, centered on a Love Meal, wherever Jesus’ followers come together. Likewise, Jesus revolutionized anointing of individuals by empowering ALL of his followers, and not through the medium of prophets, but directly through the Holy Spirit. Where? At the celebrations of Jesus’ Love Meal.

Unfortunately, the significance of Jesus’ Love Meal has largely been ignored. Despite the fact that the Vatican ll Council declared the Eucharist to be the “source and summit of Christian life.” The reality of our Eucharistic Celebrations is that we are all invited to be anointed. The empowerment is ours for the asking. No credentials required. No skills needed. Just heartfelt desire and awareness of the powers at work. The invitation is offered at Jesus’ Love Meal in at least two ways:

  • Anointing for personal transformation to help bring about the Beloved Community; and
  • Anointing for us to empower others to greater love, hope and faith.

Anointed for Transformation. Through the gift of his Love Meal, Jesus became the ultimate and eternal source for bringing us to wholeness and holiness. It is at the Consecration of the bread and wine that what are symbols of our lives become our consecrated selves along with Jesus. We are made sacred for the sacrifice!

Not in one shot. That is what life is all about. It is a process. Our personal transformation is the work of the Spirit within us. Our work is to surrender to union with the Spirit, to yield to transformation by the Spirit—especially during our Eucharistic Celebrations. Focusing on one area of our personal woundedness makes the transformation process more real to us.

Personal transformation is a process that requires our ardent desire, a desire that we are not even capable of awakening. During our Eucharistic Celebrations we need to pray that the Spirit will open up our hearts to desire personal transformation.

Besides desire, our personal transformation process requires our deep awareness of what is taking place. At our Eucharistic Celebrations we celebrate Jesus’ crucifixion and death. We must enter deeply, if only briefly, into these historical events with all our hearts and imaginations.

Remembrance of Jesus’ demonstrated love becomes the channel of love that unites us with the Trinity of Love. The psychic fire of this Trinitarian Love is the agent of change, but it requires the environment of a committed union to blaze up. Our immersion in this Mystical Union creates the Divine crucible of love. Our hunger to be plunged into this Divine crucible starts the process of our transformation.

Anointed for Empowerment. Elsewhere we have written that the Eucharist offers us a Life Vision. A vision that prompts us to identify with Jesus who led a life of empowering others and bringing others into deeper union with God, themselves, others, life, reality.  But the Eucharist is more than a Life Vision. Reception of Eucharist is an anointing, an empowerment to live Jesus’ Life Vision.

When we eat the bread and drink the wine of Eucharist, we receive Jesus and our sisters and brothers, and they receive  us. Through this Mystical Union we are anointed to become empowerers of each other. Again, our immersion in this Mystical Union is the environment for empowerment. Of course, this empowerment process depends on our awareness of and desire for what is taking place. During Eucharistic Celebrations, pray for this anointing to become channels of love, hope and faith to our sisters and brothers to awaken their love, hope and faith.

Choose Anointing. We are all anointed at our Eucharistic Celebrations. We are all chosen if we so choose. Fr. Richard Rohr, OFM states that it is the “very experience of being chosen that somehow empowers us…. To allow yourself to be chosen is to be chosen. God chooses and then uses whom he has chosen, and their useability comes from their willingness to allow themselves to be chosen in the first place.” Choose to be anointed at Eucharistic Celebrations for personal transformation and for the capacity to empower others!