Dear Parishioners: Last weekend we celebrated the great feast of Pentecost. Pope Francis celebrated the Mass of Pentecost at a packed St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. In his homily he suggests: “The world needs men and women who are not closed in on themselves, but filled with the Holy Spirit. Closing oneself off from the Holy Spirit means not only a lack of freedom; it is a sin. The world needs the fruits of the Holy Spirit: ‘love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control’ (Gal 5:22). The gift of the Holy Spirit has been bestowed upon the Church and upon each one of us, so that we may live lives of genuine faith and active charity, that we may sow the seeds of reconciliation and peace. Strengthened by the Spirit and his many gifts, may we be able uncompromisingly to battle against sin and corruption, devoting ourselves with patient perseverance to the works of justice and peace.”
While the Church Universal was celebrating the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the Apostles at Pentecost last weekend, many others were marking graduation at colleges and universities across the country. We offer our heartfelt congratulations to the many OLM parishioners who graduated from college and graduate school this year. Our prayerful best wishes go out to them as they mark this milestone of achievement in their lives. Now we await as our many OLM high school seniors graduate from local high school in the coming weeks. They too deserve our congratulations and best wishes as they celebrate the end of their high school years and a beginning of a new and exciting chapter in their young lives. May God bless and guide them all with health, happiness, wisdom, and holiness! We offer congratulations and prayerful best wishes to all those who graduate in 2015. Let us pray for them: “Go out into the world in peace; be of good courage; hold to what is good; return no one evil for evil; strengthen the faint-hearted; support the weak; help the suffering; honor all people; love and serve our God, rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.”
Next weekend we celebrate the great feast of Corpus Christi, the Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. It is a feast of particular importance as we renew our praise and worship of the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist. We celebrate that the Eucharist is essential to Catholic belief and fundamental to our Catholic life. The feast of Corpus Christi was established in 1246 by Bishop Robert de Thorte of Liege, Belgium at the suggestion of St. Juliana of Mont Carvillon. It was extended to the universal Church by Pope Urban in 1264. After the 10:30AM Mass on this feast day Our Lord is placed in the monstrance. The priest then carries the Eucharistic Lord in procession. While processing, the congregation follows and sings. Those not in procession kneel as the Blessed Sacrament passes by them. As the procession ends in Mercy Park all gather to receive Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament. I hope you can join us for the Corpus Christi Procession next Sunday immediately following the 10:30AM Mass. It is a great way to celebrate our faith and belief in Jesus Christ truly present in the Eucharist. We recall that Jesus says: “Truly, truly I say to you, he who believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread which comes down from heaven, that a man may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if anyone eats this bread, he will live forever; and the bread that I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh.”
The month of June is here and with it the end of school and the beginning of summer. In anticipation of this I remind you that this Sunday we celebrate our last 5:00PM Sunday Night Mass of the season. It resumes again on the first Sunday in September. Thank you for your warm welcome to our Summer Seminarian Eric Silva. Please say hello if you not met him yet! God Bless. Go Sox!