Monday, August 31, 2009

“Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”

And all spoke highly of him
and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth.
They also asked, “Is this not the son of Joseph?”
He said to them, “Surely you will quote me this proverb,
‘Physician, cure yourself,’ and say, ‘Do here in your native place
the things that we heard were done in Capernaum.’”
And he said,
“Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place."

The word "Christ" comes from the Greek translation of the Hebrew Messiah, which means "anointed". It became the name proper to Jesus only because he accomplished perfectly the divine mission that "Christ" signifies. In effect, in Israel those consecrated to God for a mission that he gave were anointed in his name. This was the case for kings, for priests and, in rare instances, for prophets. This had to be the case all the more so for the Messiah whom God would send to inaugurate his kingdom definitively. It was necessary that the Messiah be anointed by the Spirit of the Lord at once as king and priest, and also as prophet. Jesus fulfilled the messianic hope of Israel in his threefold office of priest, prophet and king.
-- CCC 436

Saturday, August 29, 2009

TWENTY-SECOND Sunday : "Empty is the reverence they do me."

Deuteronomy 4, 1-2; 6-8; Psalm 15; James 1, 17-18. 21-22. 27; St. Mark 7, 1-8. 14-15. 21-23

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

"Empty is the reverence they do me because they teach as dogmas mere human precepts." (Mk 7: 7)

Outrage over animal experimentation and silence in the face of the human holocaust of abortion. Proliferation of the sexist and abortifacient Depo Provera, Norplant and pill as millions languish in ignorance of the methods of natural birth regulation which is the most effective and healthiest means of spacing or delaying births. Though more Americans go to church services each week than go to sports events in an entire year such reverence is empty while mere human precepts are taught as dogmas and the eternal laws of God are spurned and ignored.

The false gospel of "niceness" condemns those who speak out against the glorification of fornication, whether homosexual or heterosexual. A human precept, that of never offending anyone under any circumstances to seek human respect, has been transformed into a commandment, while God's law of chastity is ignored. The false worship of the cult of death enshrines the evil "choice" of one human being to murder another in the womb, while God's eternal commandment "thou shalt not kill" is forgotten.

There will be no forgetting on the day of judgment, for then "the secrets of all hearts will be revealed". On that day there will be no concealing the "wicked designs that come from the deep recesses of the heart: acts of fornication, theft, murder, adulterous conduct, greed, maliciousness, deceit, sensuality, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, an obtuse spirit." (Mk 7: 21-22) It is such actions as these of which Christ says: "This people pays me lip service but their heart is far from me." (Mk 7:6) Their cry of rebellion is like that of the devil: "I will not serve."

"The Jewish people and their spiritual leaders viewed Jesus as a rabbi. (Cf. Jn 11:28; 3:2; Mt 22:23-24, 34-36) He often argued within the framework of rabbinical interpretation of the law. (Cf. Mt 12:5; 9:12; Mk 2: 23-27; Lk 6: 6-9; Jn 7: 22-23) Yet Jesus could not help but offend the teachers of the Law, for he was not content to propose his interpretation alongside theirs but taught the people 'as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.' (Mt. 7:28-29) In Jesus, the same Word of God, that had resounded on Mount Sinai to give the written law to Moses, made itself heard anew on the Mount of the Beatitudes. (Cf. Mt 5:1) Jesus did not abolish the Law but fulfilled it by giving its ultimate interpretation in a divine way: 'You have heard it was said to the men of old...But I say to you...'(Mt 5: 33-34) With this same divine authority, he disavowed certain human traditions of the Pharisees that were 'making void the word of God.' (Mk 7:13; cf. 3:8)" (CCC 581)

Christ commanded the Apostles "go teach all nations". (Mt 28:19-20) They do so today in the Church and in her teaching authority, the Magisterium. To turn a deaf ear to the teaching Church is to turn a deaf ear to Jesus Christ the Lord for he said to the Apostles and to their successors, the pope and his brother bishops in union with him, "He who hears you, hears me."

I look forward to meeting you here again next week as, together, we "meet Christ in the liturgy" -Fr. Cusick

(See also paragraphs 582, 2196 in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.)

Meeting Christ in the Liturgy (Publish with permission.)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

St. Monica: “Stay awake!"

For you do not know on which day your Lord will come.
Be sure of this: if the master of the house
had known the hour of night when the thief was coming,
he would have stayed awake
and not let his house be broken into.
-- Mt 24:42-51

Such a battle and such a victory become possible only through prayer. It is by his prayer that Jesus vanquishes the tempter, both at the outset of his public mission and in the ultimate struggle of his agony. In this petition to our heavenly Father, Christ unites us to his battle and his agony. He urges us to vigilance of the heart in communion with his own. Vigilance is "custody of the heart," and Jesus prayed for us to the Father: "Keep them in your name." The Holy Spirit constantly seeks to awaken us to keep watch. Finally, this petition takes on all its dramatic meaning in relation to the last temptation of our earthly battle; it asks for final perseverance. "Lo, I am coming like a thief! Blessed is he who is awake."
-- CCC 2849

Art: Ary Scheffer, St. Augustine and St. Monica, 1855. Musee du Louvre, Paris.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wednesday, 21st Wk: "on the outside you appear righteous"

Jesus said,
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites.
You are like whitewashed tombs, which appear beautiful on the outside,
but inside are full of dead men’s bones and every kind of filth.
Even so, on the outside you appear righteous,
but inside you are filled with hypocrisy and evildoing.
-- Mt 23:27-32

Scandal takes on a particular gravity by reason of the authority of those who cause it or the weakness of those who are scandalized. It prompted our Lord to utter this curse: "Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea." Scandal is grave when given by those who by nature or office are obliged to teach and educate others. Jesus reproaches the scribes and Pharisees on this account: he likens them to wolves in sheep's clothing.
-- CCC 2285

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tuesday, 21st Wk: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees"

... you hypocrites.
You pay tithes of mint and dill and cummin,
and have neglected the weightier things of the law:
judgment and mercy and fidelity.
But these you should have done, without neglecting the others.
Blind guides, who strain out the gnat and swallow the camel
-- Mt 23:23-26

In times past, cruel practices were commonly used by legitimate governments to maintain law and order, often without protest from the Pastors of the Church, who themselves adopted in their own tribunals the prescriptions of Roman law concerning torture. Regrettable as these facts are, the Church always taught the duty of clemency and mercy. She forbade clerics to shed blood. In recent times it has become evident that these cruel practices were neither necessary for public order, nor in conformity with the legitimate rights of the human person. On the contrary, these practices led to ones even more degrading. It is necessary to work for their abolition. We must pray for the victims and their tormentors.
-- CCC 2298

Saturday, August 22, 2009

TWENTY-FIRST Sunday: "You have the words of Eternal Life"

Joshua 24, 1-2. 15-17. 18; Psalm 34; Ephesians 5, 21-32; St. John 6, 60-69

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

"Hocus pocus" is a popular expression in our culture to indicate magic powers and to enthrall an audience. We've all said the words and laughed in fun as we watch magic "tricks" and sleight of hand in entertainment. These words, unbeknownst to many people, actually come from a mocking phrase used in sacrilegious attack upon the holiest gift: the real presence of the Lord in the Eucharistic Sacrifice of the Mass.

The saying to which we refer originally went along these lines: "hocus pocus dominocus." Ring any bells? This is a mocking spoof of the Latin words for the consecration of the Mass: "Hoc est enim corpus meum. (This is my body.)" This is one of the many ways in which we can see that our culture is deeply imbued with anti-Catholic and anti-sacred sentiment.

In today's Gospel we read that, when Christ taught that he gave his flesh for the life of the world, "Many of his disciples, when they heard it, said, 'This is a hard saying; who can endure it?' " (John 6, 60)

Our Lord, the Gospel relates, "knew from the first who those were that did not believe, and who it was that should betray him." (John 6, 64) And what does he do as a result? Does he change his teaching in order to show his compassion? Instead he demonstrates authentic love by repeating the truth, realizing that doing so would shake the faith of many who had followed him. And the scriptures testify that "After this many of his disciples drew back and no longer went about with him." (John 6, 66) Rather than changing his teaching, which is the truth and therefore can never be changed, Christ turns to those upon whom the fate of the infant Church will rest and asks them, "Will you also go away?" (John 6, 67)

The first announcement of the Eucharist divided the disciples, just as the announcement of the Passion scandalized them: "This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?" (John 6:60) The Eucharist and the Cross are stumbling blocks. It is the same mystery and it never ceases to be an occasion of division. "Will you also go away?" : (John 6: 67) the Lord's question echoes through the ages, as a loving invitation to discover that only he has "the words of eternal life" (John 6:68) and that to receive in faith the gift of his Eucharist is to receive the Lord himself. (CCC 1336)

The Eucharist is indeed the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ and this truth can never change. Today many find this stupendous reality a "stumbling block" and so reject Christ's teaching. The Lord is fully aware that many "murmur in protest" against his teaching and he leaves them free to do so. Let us pray that all mankind will receive the grace to become aware of the Lord's presence and to fall down in worship and awe in his presence. Let the whole world echo in unison with Peter: "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life; and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the holy one of God." (John 6, 68-69)

I look forward to meeting you here again next week as, together, we "meet Christ in the liturgy", Father Cusick

Meeting Christ in the Liturgy Publish with permission

(See also paragraphs 438, 1336, 2766 in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.)

Art: Ford Madox Brown, Jesus Washing Peter's Feet.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Saint Pius X: “You shall love the Lord"

... your God, with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind.
This is the greatest and the first commandment.
The second is like it:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”

When someone asks him, "Which commandment in the Law is the greatest?" Jesus replies: "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments hang all the Law and the prophets." The Decalogue must be interpreted in light of this twofold yet single commandment of love, the fullness of the Law:

The commandments: "You shall not commit adultery, You shall not kill, You shall not steal, You shall not covet," and any other commandment, are summed up in this sentence: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
-- CCC 2055

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Saint Bernard: "invite to the feast whomever you find."

‘My friend, how is it that you came in here without a wedding garment?’

First Holy Communion. Having become a child of God clothed with the wedding garment, the neophyte is admitted "to the marriage supper of the Lamb" and receives the food of the new life, the body and blood of Christ. The Eastern Churches maintain a lively awareness of the unity of Christian initiation by giving Holy Communion to all the newly baptized and confirmed, even little children, recalling the Lord's words: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them." The Latin Church, which reserves admission to Holy Communion to those who have attained the age of reason, expresses the orientation of Baptism to the Eucharist by having the newly baptized child brought to the altar for the praying of the Our Father.
-- CCC 1244

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Wednesday, 20th Wk: "am I not free to do as I wish"

Are you envious because I am generous?’
Thus, the last will be first, and the first will be last.
-- Mt 20:1-16

Each of the two sexes is an image of the power and tenderness of God, with equal dignity though in a different way. The union of man and woman in marriage is a way of imitating in the flesh the Creator's generosity and fecundity: "Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh." All human generations proceed from this union.
-- CCC 2335

Sacred Scripture and the Church's traditional practice see in large families a sign of God's blessing and the parents' generosity.
-- CCC 2373

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tuesday, 20th Wk: “Amen, I say to you, it will be hard for one who is rich to enter the Kingdom of heaven."

“For men this is impossible,
but for God all things are possible.”

Faithful to the witness of Scripture, the Church often addresses her prayer to the "almighty and eternal God" ("omnipotens sempiterne Deus. .."), believing firmly that "nothing will be impossible with God" (Gen 18:14; Lk 1:37; Mt 19:26).
-- CCC 276

In photo: Seminarians preparing to be ordained deacons lie prostrate as a sign of total surrender to God in the Holy Spirit Major Seminary church in Dhaka. The priesthood in Bangladesh is said to show signs of healthy growth. Courtesy:UCAN Priests in India will each promote a candidate for the priesthood to celebrate the Year for Priests. More on the story here.)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Monday, 20th Wk: “Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life?”

He answered him, “Why do you ask me about the good?
There is only One who is good.
If you wish to enter into life, keep the commandments.”

"Teacher, what good deed must I do, to have eternal life?" To the young man who asked this question, Jesus answers first by invoking the necessity to recognize God as the "One there is who is good," as the supreme Good and the source of all good. Then Jesus tells him: "If you would enter life, keep the commandments." And he cites for his questioner the precepts that concern love of neighbor: "You shall not kill, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and mother." Finally Jesus sums up these commandments positively: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."
-- CCC 2052

Friday, August 14, 2009

Saint Maximilian Kolbe: "Some are incapable of marriage"

... because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the Kingdom of heaven.

Christ proposes the evangelical counsels, in their great variety, to every disciple. The perfection of charity, to which all the faithful are called, entails for those who freely follow the call to consecrated life the obligation of practicing chastity in celibacy for the sake of the Kingdom, poverty and obedience. It is the profession of these counsels, within a permanent state of life recognized by the Church, that characterizes the life consecrated to God.
-- CCC 915

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thursday, 19th Wk: "I forgave you your entire debt"

... because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?’

Thus the Lord's words on forgiveness, the love that loves to the end, become a living reality. The parable of the merciless servant, which crowns the Lord's teaching on ecclesial communion, ends with these words: "So also my heavenly Father will do to every one of you, if you do not forgive your brother from your heart." It is there, in fact, "in the depths of the heart," that everything is bound and loosed. It is not in our power not to feel or to forget an offense; but the heart that offers itself to the Holy Spirit turns injury into compassion and purifies the memory in transforming the hurt into intercession.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Wednesday, 19th Wk: "If your brother sins against you"

... go and tell him his fault between you and him alone.
Conversion is accomplished in daily life by gestures of reconciliation, concern for the poor, the exercise and defense of justice and right, by the admission of faults to one's brethren, fraternal correction, revision of life, examination of conscience, spiritual direction, acceptance of suffering, endurance of persecution for the sake of righteousness. Taking up one's cross each day and following Jesus is the surest way of penance.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Saint Clare, Virgin: “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?”

He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said,
“Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children,
you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven.
Whoever becomes humble like this child
is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.
And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.

Second, a humble and trusting heart that enables us "to turn and become like children": for it is to "little children" that the Father is revealed.

[The prayer is accomplished] by the contemplation of God alone, and by the warmth of love, through which the soul, molded and directed to love him, speaks very familiarly to God as to its own Father with special devotion.
Our Father: at this name love is aroused in us . . . and the confidence of obtaining what we are about to ask. . . . What would he not give to his children who ask, since he has already granted them the gift of being his children?
-- CCC 2785

Saturday, August 8, 2009

19th Sunday, Ordinary Time: "I am the bread of life."

1 Kings 19, 4-8; Psalm 34; Ephesians 4, 30-5, 2; St. Johnn 6, 41-51

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

"How could I bring a child into a world like this?" How many times have you heard such murmuring in hostility toward new life?

"What if I bring my child into the world only to see him rejected by his own people, spat upon, mocked, beaten, scourged, crowned with thorns, stripped of his garments and then crucified like a common criminal?" Mary could very well have responded to Gabriel's announcement of the Incarnation in just this way. But, as our Lady knows, every child is a sign of God's will that life should go on.

The evil of the culture of death persists in the anti-life mentality which questions the right to life of every child and the duty of husband and wife to generously accept the gift of "children lovingly from God." (The Marriage Rite) This condition is pervasive because it is often insidiously disguised as good.

The culture of death thrives upon the widely held error that the evil in the world and the suffering it brings make life itself intolerable. But life is created by God and therefore always good, no matter how bruised by suffering or eclipsed by pain. Christ's Passion and death have given salvific meaning and spiritual wealth to our suffering. Men and women who forget they are created by the loving God of Eternal Life lose sight of the eternal human vocation to holiness and happiness with God himself. In an environment which does not lovingly and generously accept every human life as sacred the disease and sickness of the culture of death thrives and grows.

The Eucharist, the Body and Blood of our Lord and God, Jesus Christ, stands as the greatest sign of contradiction against the lies peddled today which spread the culture of death. The "Bread of Life", multiplied abundantly on the altars of the world to feed all mankind, calls all men to recognize their own dignity. All are are called to receive the flesh of Christ given for the life of the world and so reach beyond this world with its broken promises, sins and suffering, to the eternal joy of the wedding banquet of the Lamb.

"Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you." (John 6, 27) If we are in intimate communion with our Lord present in the Eucharist, then we are inoculated against the peddlers of death with their abortion, abortifacient contraception, infanticide, unchaste sex education and euthanasia, the arsenal of the culture of death which has declared outright war upon God and human life. The members of our society who tolerate the abomination of anti-life policies and practices are in love with their own shadow in monstrous self-absorption and condemn themselves to eternal death. Christians are called to turn away from selfishness in order to focus upon the image of Christ in the Eucharist; to be led not into the temptation of false hopes and empty promises, but to eternal life itself.

We labor "for the food which endures to eternal life" when we reverently and frequently receive the Bread of Life, and then go forth bravely and calmly into the world with its murder-sprees, rampant infanticide and glorification of perversion with hope, confident that, as Christ promised, "I have overcome the world." And we overcome the world with him, we share in his victory, as we adore and receive him in the Eucharist with a clear conscience. We look forward to the life of heaven to come in and through the Eucharist. By this divine gift we are in communion with the Paschal Lamb whom we receive and who continually unites us to himself and the Father in heaven.

"In an ancient prayer the Church acclaims the mystery of the Eucharist: 'O sacred banquet in which Christ is received as food, the memory of his Passion is renewed, the soul is filled with grace and a pledge of the life to come is given to us.' If the Eucharist is the memorial of the Passover of the Lord Jesus, if by our communion at the altar we are filled 'with every heavenly blessing and grace,' (Roman Missal, Roman Canon 96: Supplices te rogamus) then the Eucharist is also an anticipation of the heavenly glory." (CCC1402)

Children are brought into the world according to God's plan and design in order to share the life of grace forever with him in glory. This is true despite all the evils which may threaten our lives but which can never harm our souls. "I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh." (John 6, 51) The gift of God's flesh and blood is a living and divine sign that life should go on forever and ever and ever. Begin eternity today by kneeling in worship of our Incarnate God present in all the tabernacles of the world.

I look forward to meeting you here again next week as, together, we "meet Christ in the liturgy", Father Cusick

(See also number 1001 in the CCC.)

Meeting Christ in the Liturgy (Publish with permission.)

(Art: Feeding of the Multitude, Limbourg brothers, before 1416, illumination. Musée Condé, Chantilly, from "Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry", courtesy of Christus Rex.)

Friday, August 7, 2009

Friday, 18th Wk Ord Time: "come after me"

“Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself,
take up his cross, and follow me.
For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
-- Mt 16:24-28

The cross is the unique sacrifice of Christ, the "one mediator between God and men". But because in his incarnate divine person he has in some way united himself to every man, "the possibility of being made partners, in a way known to God, in the paschal mystery" is offered to all men. He calls his disciples to "take up [their] cross and follow [him]", for "Christ also suffered for [us], leaving [us] an example so that [we] should follow in his steps." In fact Jesus desires to associate with his redeeming sacrifice those who were to be its first beneficiaries. This is achieved supremely in the case of his mother, who was associated more intimately than any other person in the mystery of his redemptive suffering.

Apart from the cross there is no other ladder by which we may get to heaven.
-- CCC 618

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Wednesday, 18th Wk Ord Time: “Have pity on me"

"My daughter is tormented by a demon.”

Satan or the devil and the other demons are fallen angels who have freely refused to serve God and his plan. Their choice against God is definitive. They try to associate man in their revolt against God.
-- CCC 414

Monday, August 3, 2009

Monday, 18th Wk Ord Time: "Jesus saw the vast crowd"

his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.

Since it must be treated from conception as a person, the embryo must be defended in its integrity, cared for, and healed, as far as possible, like any other human being.

Prenatal diagnosis is morally licit, "if it respects the life and integrity of the embryo and the human fetus and is directed toward its safe guarding or healing as an individual. . . . It is gravely opposed to the moral law when this is done with the thought of possibly inducing an abortion, depending upon the results: a diagnosis must not be the equivalent of a death sentence."
-- CCC 2274

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time: "Do not work for food that perishes."

Exodus 16, 2-4. 12-15; Psalm 78; Ephesians 4, 17. 20-24; St. John 6, 24-35

Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Every day, the world over, the Holy Mass is offered countless times and in varied places: from great cathedrals to humble churches and in the wild under the dome of the sky. In many places this awesome event is greeted with indifference. So many empty pews bespeak a lack of faith that God is truly present in the world in each Mass. How true it is that mankind has changed so little; many people are indifferent to Christ today just as they were when he walked the earth and shared our lives almost two thousand years ago.

Change begins with each of us as we grow in our knowledge and love of God's word among us in the proclamation of the Word and of His real presence in the "true bread from heaven" (John 6:32) as he describes the gift in today's Gospel.

At the heart of the Eucharistic celebration are the bread and wine that, by the words of Christ and the invocation of the Holy Spirit, become Christ's Body and Blood. Faithful to the Lord's command the Church continues to do, in his memory and until his glorious return, what he did on the eve of his Passion: "He took bread..." "He took the cup filled with wine..." The signs of bread and wine become, in a way surpassing understanding, the Body and Blood of Christ; they continue also to signify the goodness of creation. Thus in the Offertory we give thanks to the Creator for bread and wine, (Cf. Psalm 104: 13-15) fruit of "the work of human hands," but above all as "fruit of the earth" and "of the vine"--gifts of the Creator. The Church sees in the gesture of the king-priest Melchizedek, who "brought out bread and wine," a prefiguring of her own offering. (Genesis 14:18; cf. Roman Missal, EP I (Roman Canon) 95. (CCC 1333)

In the Old Covenant bread and wine were offered in sacrifice among the first fruits of the earth as a sign of grateful acknowledgment to the Creator. But they also received a new significance in the context of the Exodus: the unleavened bread that Israel eats every year at Passover commemorates the haste of the departure that liberated them from Egypt; the remembrance of the manna in the desert will always recall to Israel that it lives by the bread of the Word of God; their daily bread is the fruit of the promised land, the pledge of God's faithfulness to his promises. The "cup of blessing" (1 Corinthians 10:16) at the end of the Jewish Passover meal adds to the festive joy of wine an eschatological dimension: the messianic expectation of the rebuilding of Jerusalem. When Jesus instituted the Eucharist, he gave a new and definitive meaning to the blessing of the bread and the cup. (CCC 1334)

The miracles of the multiplication of the loaves, when the Lord says the blessing, breaks and distributes the loaves through his disciples to feed the multitude, prefigure the superabundance of this unique bread of his Eucharist. (CCC 1335)

As we grow in our knowledge of the Holy Eucharist, we can grow in our thankfulness each time we encounter this wonder in the Liturgy. It is so easy to grow cold and indifferent toward Christ so humbly and mysteriously present.

When we acknowledge the truth of Christ present we also affirm the reality of grace, the gift of God's very own divine life, granted undeniably to each of us "blessed to be called to the Supper of the Lamb." We must continually fan the flame of our faith through every means available so that, drawn to receive our Eucharistic Lord humbly and reverently, we may behold the miracle of our own lives transformed, made holy and happy, by this greatest of gifts.

I look forward to meeting you here again next week as, together, we "meet Christ in the liturgy" -Fr. Cusick

(See also paragraphs 423, 698, 1094, 2835 in the Catechism of the Catholic Church.)

Meeting Christ in the Liturgy (Publish with permission.)