On the spiritual page of the Catholic Times, the columnist tells us about a professor, he and many others admired. He was a respected teacher within the church who was fighting a number of diseases; one of the them was diabetes and was doing it for thirty years and joyfully.
and control over his eating, was always done carefully; on a work trip,
he would check his blood sugar. On trips with the columnist, he would
come to his room and ask to check the columnist's blood sugar.
would habitually check the amount of food he ate: the calories in
each meal. If you were beside him, you would hear him give each food the
number of calories. On one occasion the columnist hearing the
counting of the calories and the number given to one particular food,
said to the professor: "Hey, that couldn't have that many calories!" He
was right on; out of curiosity, the columnist did his checking, and his
count was accurate.
one occasion at a meeting with the professor, there was a table set up
for snacks. As in the past each plate was given the amount of calories,
and he ate accordingly. One of the dishes was cups of noodles. This
would have exceeded his caloric intake on that day, and he passed it up.
After the snack and a period of rest, they headed for the area for the
liturgy of the Mass. One of the study group members asked the professor
how many calories in the Eucharist.
The question came from one who hadn't been baptized very long and left
the columnist with a strange feeling. He must have heard all the talk
of bread from heaven, and the bread of life and wanted to satisfy his
professor answered: "Eucharist has zero calories." These words were
greeted with a period of silence and the nodding of heads in agreement.
The columnist found the answer ripe for meditative reflection. A young
scholar asking a vivid, graphic question, the professor without thought:
zero calories, and the columnist tongue tied but with many thoughts
running through his head.
night the professor and the study team at the Mass each would have
different responses to the 'o' calories of the professor. The columnist
was at the back of the church and at the elevation of the Eucharist, the
meaning of 'flesh and bread' came to him with more force than in the