Maybe you need to be reminded what MTD is. It is Moralistic, Therapeutic Deism–that false religion that has supplanted true Christianity in most of the churches –both Protestant and Catholic–across the USA. Moralistic: reducing the Christian faith to good works and being respectable people who are more concerned with saving the planet than saving souls. Therapeutic: the message that if you only turn to Jesus he will help fix your tired marriage, keep your kids from doing drugs, make your business succeed, help you with your addictions and help you get your act together and be a shiny nice person. Deism: God created the world and got it going but then retired. There is a God, but he’s probably on the other side of the clouds somewhere having a nap.
I hate that stuff.
Corpus Christi knocks it on its head and reminds us what full blooded, orthodox, historical Christianity is really about. It is about the Body of Christ in four aspects. The first aspect is the incarnation–the enfleshment of God. The second person of the Holy and Undivided Trinity took human form of his blessed Mother. He took her flesh. Mary was not some kind of pipeline through which Jesus was beamed down into the world. He came and took her flesh and in taking her flesh he took our flesh. The incarnation means God took human form. He had flesh and blood and bones and hair. He ate and slept and sweated and stank and went to the toilet.
Satan HATES that. He is proud to be a spiritual creature. He hates the idea that God was so humble that he took human form. Consequently Satan hates our flesh too because God took our flesh. That’s why he twists all the pleasures of the flesh into sins of the flesh and tempts us to twist them too.
Second: That flesh taken by the Son of God of our blessed Mother was crucified. It was beaten, scourged, stripped and nailed naked to the cross. The Body of Christ is Christ crucified. That is why in Catholic churches we have crucifixes–not empty crosses. Oh the Protestant will say, “We have an empty cross because we believe in the resurrection” Baloney. You have an empty cross because you do not preach Christ crucified. Catholics have crucifixes because we believe in Corpus Christ. That’s why we all the body on the cross a “corpus”. It is the Body of Christ incarnate of Mary and crucified for the whole world – naked. bloody. beaten and broken. This is Corpus Christ. The body of Christ.
Third: That crucified Christ is made present and real on the altar of every Catholic Church at Mass. This too the Protestants do not have. Do not be mistaken. At the Reformation they explicitly denied transubstantiation. They denied what our Lord himself taught and what the Church had always believed. You will find Anglicans who say, “But we believe in the Real Presence!”. Then you’re not good Anglicans because the Anglican 39 Articles of religion explicitly deny transubstantiation. Anglicans do not celebrate the Real Presence. They celebrate the Real Absence. Only the Catholic Church (and Eastern Orthodox) still retain the fullness of the faith in the Body of Christ, and it is only this full blooded truth that an counter the false religion of Moralistic, Therapeutic Deism.
Finally, the Church is the Body of Christ. The Catholic Church (despite all our human failures) does in the world today what the Body of Christ did when Jesus was on earth. We heal. We preach the Truth. We forgive sins. We conquer Satan. That’s what the historical Body of Christ (Jesus) did. That’s what we do. That’s what we do as a universal church, as a diocese, as a parish and as individually baptized people. We are Corpus Christi. We are the Body of Christ.
The reason the church is pusillanimous and weak is because she has forgotten the Body of Christ – incarnate of Mary, crucified for the sins of the world, present in the Eucharist and alive in the Church. The reason the church is confused and failing is because she is confused about the Body of Christ and failing to preach Christ incarnate, crucified and present in the Eucharist and the Church, and only when we return to these core truths of the gospel and worship like we believe it and live like we believe it will our strength return.