The Catholic belief in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist is a hard saying, no doubt. Yet, it's no harder a saying as is said by Jesus himself as he begins his colloquy in the synagogue at Capernaum with his disciples (see Jn 6:30). This teaching, the Catholic Church defends as the definitive and apostolic origins of the Eucharist, points to the Eucharist (from the Greek for "thanksgiving") as the "source and summit of the Christian life". For a beautiful summation of the scandal of such a saying - the recognition of how hard it is to believe - enjoy this brief writing from Fr. Richard Veras of Saint Joseph's Seminary; and for a Catholic answer addressing common Evangelical Fundamentalist challenges to the Catholic understanding of the Real Presence, please also see more of this post by clicking on the image. Peace be with you!
The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that “by sending his only Son and the Spirit of Love in the fullness of time, God has revealed his innermost secret: God himself is an eternal exchange of love, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and he has destined us to share in that exchange” (CCC 221). This God, who comes to each one of us in a unique and personal way, by the very nature and mystery of our sacramental baptism, dwells within us. St. Paul the Apostle reminds us that we are, in faith and in fact, temples of the Holy Spirit. By worshiping the Trinity we realize the full truth of ourselves. “In the communion of grace with the Trinity, man’s ‘living area’ is broadened and raised up to the supernatural level of divine life. Man lives in God and by God” (Saint John Paul II) - (adapted from Magnificat, June 2020). For a brief video and more on the mystery of The Trinity - a God who is Love - please click the image. Peace be with you!
In the Old Testament, the prophet Isaiah tells us what riches await us - await the world - when we live in the life of the Holy Spirit: "[When] The Spirit from on high is poured out on us. Then will the desert become an orchard and the orchard be regarded as a forest. Right will dwell in the desert and justice abide in the orchard. Justice will bring about peace; right will produce calm and security. My people will live in peaceful country, in secure dwellings and quiet resting places" (Is 32:15-18). What an image this is! It's an image of peace, of order, of tranquility and restfulness. Yet, if we not avert eyes, if we're aware of the world in which we live today, we see quite a different world than what Isaiah speaks of. Why is this? In his 2011 Apostolic letter "Porta fidei," then Pope Benedict XVI shared an image that we can reflect on today that helps answer this question. It's a glimpse into what we so desperately need to shape the world into God's will for each one of ours lives, when Benedict said, "What the world is in particular need of today is the credible witness of people enlightened in mind and heart by the word of the Lord, and capable of opening the hearts and minds of many to the desire for God and for true life, life without end". The Spirit of God - the Holy Spirit - is the life that animates the Church, the body of Christ. What we are witnesses of today is a world that lacks the fullness of the Spirit meant for each one of us and, therefore, the world. To change the world we must begin with ME. Come, Holy Spirit! Renew the face of the Earth. Begin with me. For more about this post "Lectio Divina | Pentecost Sunday," please click on the image. Peace be with you!
On this 7th Sunday of Easter where the Solemnity of the Ascension is celebrated, we are there with the Apostles and with Mary, witnesses to Jesus ascending to his throne, seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.
The story of the Prodigal Son, as we encounter in the Gospel of Luke (15:11-32), is one of the most poignant in all of literature. Sadly, there are many Catholics today who have fallen away from their baptismal faith. Each has a story of his own. Yet, by the sacramental power of one's baptism there remains a call unanswered - the yearning of a Father desiring the return of his child to the home of his baptismal birth. For more about this post, and for a 2 min video expressing the tender mercy that awaits at home in love's embrace, click on the image. Our father in heaven wants us home. He wants you home. If you’ve been away from the Church for one day, or for a lifetime, come home. Your family misses you. For more, please click on the image. Peace be with you!