"Jesus said to his disciples: “As the Father loves me, so I also love you. Remain in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and remain in his love.” ~John 15
Dear Parishioners and Friends,
We congratulate the second group of our St. Rita children who gathered in church this past Saturday morning receive their First Holy Communion. Happy parents, grandparents and family gathered for this joy-filled Mass. Our parish is truly blessed in this Diocesan 150 year Anniversary and Year of the Holy Eucharist.
The weekend celebration of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the premier and most important event of the parish community. Like the hub on a wheel, the Celebration of the Mass keeps us rooted firmly in Christ. All other parish activities, as important as they are, revolve around the hub of the Sunday celebration of the Eucharist. (Notice all the interchangeable terms used to refer to the Mass!)
Why is Sunday Mass so important? The reason is Jesus! The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offers us an intimate relationship with God as found expressed in Jesus. The presence of Jesus is found within the "Word" that we read in Scripture, in the Reflection of the homily, in the Universal Prayer offered for our brothers and sisters in need, and in the summary we express in the Profession of Faith.
We find Jesus in the offering given to support the larger mission of the church and in the anticipation of what Jesus will do with the gifts of bread and wine that are brought forward and placed on the Altar. We find the living presence of Jesus in the midst of the Eucharistic Prayer and consecration of the elements of bread and wine that become for us the actual Body and Blood of Christ. No longer just bread and wine, these elements are transformed by "transubstantiation" into Jesus himself. Using the words and action of Jesus at his command, as described at the Last Supper, the priest prays and recites the words of Jesus over the gifts of bread and wine so that they become for us the Body and Blood of Christ.
Together we receive Jesus at the time of "Holy Communion." The sacramental reception of Jesus into our own hearts, into our very being, into our own flesh and blood, is an astounding gift! We don't have to travel to a distant place to find God. We only need to let God enter the locked doors of our inner being and trust in his Son Jesus. Jesus always spoke in intimate terms of his unitive and perfect relationship with his Heavenly Father.
By receiving Jesus in the Holy Eucharist, we intimately unite with the same loving and merciful Triune God.
May God bless you and your family!