The Gift

Dear Friends,

About this time last year, Alex Price came to Saint Eleanor Parish, fresh out of Franciscan University, Steubenville, and became one of two Youth Ministers for our parish family. As we were beginning a new and concerted effort to engage our young people in discipleship, Alex brought his many gifts, talents, intellect, firm Faith, unwavering love for Jesus and his energetic personality not only to our youth but to all of us on the parish staff and to everyone he met. His courageous commitment to the Lord Jesus and to sharing the Lord’s love with others has been inspiring and a blessing.

Alex is leaving us to accept a teaching position in Theology at Devon Prep. This is wonderful news for the students at Devon Prep. While we are sad that Alex will be moving on from Saint Eleanor and we will miss him here, we wish him every success and the assurance of prayers for his new endeavor as he teaches and shares our Catholic Faith with his new students. Keep him in your good prayers.

This Sunday, our Holy Cross Regional School is hosting their annual New Family Picnic at Black Rock Park, Pavilion 1 from 3 – 5 pm. It is a wonderful opportunity for families to meet the teachers and staff, and one another before the school year starts in earnest.

Turning to our Gospel, Jesus says, “…and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.” This caused quite a stir among His listeners. They couldn’t fathom how Jesus would give His flesh to eat. Jesus doesn’t back down but repeats, “…unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.”

Here is emphasis on and explanation of the real, abiding and substantial presence of Jesus, our Lord, present in Holy Communion. When you and I eat the Flesh and Blood of Jesus, we become one with Him. He enters into us and we enter into Him. What a remarkable and extraordinary gift! Do we ponder this gift? Do we acknowledge this gift? Do we claim this gift? Do we give thanks for this gift? Do we allow this gift to make a difference within us? Do we allow this gift to be the source of our thinking, speaking and acting?

In these troubling and uncertain times within the Church, our country and society, we easily grow discouraged or become disheartened. It is now that we need to turn to Jesus, to His words, His teachings and ask His grace to live as He lived. Jesus promises that “the one who feeds on me [Jesus] will have life because of me [Jesus].”

May we help one another to turn to Jesus, to accept Jesus, to feed on Jesus and to live Jesus day after day.

God bless you, God love you,

Monsignor McCulken

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