Corpus Christi

Dear Friends,

Our newly ordained priest, Father Alessandro Giardini, arrived last Sunday in the late afternoon. He helped with Communion at the 7 pm Mass and was able to greet some of our parish family afterwards. As I write this, he is busy unpacking and organizing things. His enthusiasm is contagious and he is ready to jump right into parish life here in Collegeville. We welcome him warmly and very much look forward to his priestly ministry among us!

The final Mass for our Holy Cross Regional school students was very uplifting. Everyone had smiles on their faces. It was difficult to tell if the teachers or the students had the larger smiles. It was nice to see so many parents attending as well, all of whom were also smiling.

In August we will be one of the host sites for the Seminarian Vocations Bike tour. They will arrive at Saint Eleanor on Friday, August 9 and depart after Mass on Saturday morning, August 10. We are planning some activities for our families and the seminarians for Friday evening. Hope you will plan to participate and encourage these young men in their vocations. More details to come.

This weekend we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, in Latin Corpus Christi. This feast draws our attention to the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. That means that we Catholics believe and affirm that the bread and wine at Mass are changed substantively into the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ. While the outward appearances remain the same, the substance of the elements is radically changed. It is no longer bread and wine, it is truly and really Jesus Himself before us. He humbles Himself to come to us this way so that we will not withdraw from Him or be fearful of Him. He wants us to draw closer to Him, to feed on Him, to be renewed by Him, to be healed, forgiven and strengthened by Him. Come, let us adore Him!

At the end of the Noon Mass, we will hold our annual outdoor Corpus Christi procession of the Blessed Sacrament on the parish grounds, concluding with Benediction in Church. It is a short procession, but it gives us the opportunity to offer public testimony, witnessing to our faith and belief in our Lord Jesus Christ.

In the Gospel this weekend, rather than send away a large and hungry crowd of followers, Jesus feeds them with just a few loaves and a couple of fish. What looked impossible to the eyes of the Apostles, feeding so many with so little, is accomplished by Jesus who seeks to bring all of us into communion with Him, the Trinity and with one another. Thus, Jesus reveals not only His divine powers but the divine plan for our salvation. May we work always, by surrender to His grace, to bring all those we encounter on our life journey into one with Jesus to build up the Body of Christ in preparation for His eternal Kingdom in heaven.

God bless you, God love you,

Monsignor McCulken

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