June 23-25, 2000, vol. 11, no. 112




       This weekend we observe Ordinary Time on Friday, while Saturday we celebrate the Feast of the Birth of Saint John the Baptist to Elizabeth and Zachary. Sunday we complete the triduum of feasts after the Ascension with the Solemnity of Corpus Christi in honoring the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ. For the readings, liturgies, meditations, and vignettes for these feasts, DAILY LITURGY.

    First Reading:  2 Kings 11: 1-4, 9-28
    Responsorial:  Psalm 57: 3-6, 11, 16
    Gospel:   Matthew 6: 19-23

    First Reading:  Jeremiah 1: 4-10
    Responsorial:  Psalm 132: 11-14, 17-18
    Second Reading:  1 Peter 1: 8-12
    Gospel:   Luke 1: 5-17
Vigil of the Birth of Saint John the Baptist

Saint John the Baptist
First Reading:  Isaiah 39: 1-6
Responsorial:  Psalm 139: 1-3, 13-15
Second Reading: Acts 13: 22-26
Gospel:   Luke 1: 57-66, 80
Feast of the Birth of Saint John the Baptist

    First Reading:  Exodus 24: 3-4
    Responsorial:  Psalm 116: 12-13, 15-18
    Second Reading:  Hebrews 9: 11-15
    Gospel:   Mark 14: 12-16, 22-26

    The Eucharist is the Sacrament which contains the true Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, together with His Soul and Divinity, the entire living and glorified Christ, under the appearances of bread and wine. The Council of Trent clearly defines the truth that is the very foundation of all Christ-life and worship: "In the Most Holy Sacrament of the Eucharist there is contained truly, really, and substantially, the Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, together with His Soul and Divinity, indeed the whole Christ." As Catholics we believe that Jesus Christ remains personally present on the altar as long as there is a consecrated Host in the tabernacle. He is the same Jesus Christ, true God and true Man, Who walked the streets of Galilee and Judea. We believe that He actually comes as our personal guest every time we receive Holy Communion. The Eucharist is one of the seven Sacraments instituted by Christ to give us a share in the life of God. It is the greatest of all seven Sacraments since it contains Christ Himself, the Divine Author of the Sacraments. There are three different aspects of phases of the Eucharist. The first is called the Real Presence of Christ on the altar while there remains a consecrated Host in the tabernacle. The second phase of the Eucharist is the Sacrifice of the Mass, and the third is Holy Communion.

    The word "Eucharist", from the Greek, means "Thanksgiving." It is applied to this sacrament because Our Lord gave thanks to His Father when He instituted It, and also because the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the best means of expressing our thanks to God for His favors. The Holy Eucharist is the very center of Catholic worship, the heart of Catholic life. Because the Church believes that the Son of God is truly present in the Blessed Sacrament, she erects beautiful churches and adorns them richly. The Sacrifice of the Mass is not only a ritual which reminds us of the sacrifice of Calvary. In it, through the ministry of priests, Christ continues till the end of time the sacrifice of the Cross in an unbloody manner. The Eucharist is also a meal which reminds us of the Last Supper, celebrates our unity together in Christ, and already now makes present the Messianic banquet of the Kingdom of Heaven. In the Eucharist Jesus nourishes Christians with His own self, the Bread of Life, so that they may become a people more pleasing to God and filled with greater love of God and neighbor. The Eucharist is reserved in our churches to be a powerful help to prayer and the service of others. Reservation of the Blessed Sacrament means that at the end of Communion the remaining Consecrated Bread is placed in the tabernacle and reverently reserved. The Eucharist reserved is a continuing sign of our Lord's real presence among His people and spiritual food for the sick and dying.

    We owe gratitude, adoration, and devotion to the Real Presence of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament reserved. We show this devotion in our visits to the tabernacle in our churches and in Benediction when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed to the people for reverence and adoration and the priest blesses the people with the Lord's Body. The tombs of the Martyrs, the paintings on the walls in the catacombs, and the custom of reserving the Blessed Sacrament in the homes of the first Christians in the years of persecution show the unity of faith in the first centuries of Christianity in the doctrine that in the Eucharist Christ is really contained, offered, and received. From the Eucharist the entire Church drew strength for courageous struggles and brilliant victories. The Eucharist is the center of all Sacramental life because it is of the greatest importance for uniting and strengthening the Church. The Novena in honor of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist can be made many times during the liturgical Year to deepen our faith in this great mystery of love, the center of all Sacramental life of the Church. For special devotions and prayers honoring the Holy Eucharist, see DEVOTIONS

Institution of the Holy Eucharist The DAILY WORD
Taken from the Gospel for Corpus Christi Sunday
"And while they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessing it, He broke and gave it to them, and said 'Take; this is My Body.' And taking a cup and giving thanks, He gave it to them, and they all drank of it; and He said to them, 'This is My Blood of the new covenant, which is being shed for many.'"
Mark 14: 22-24

Famous quotes of Bishop Fulton J. SheenLaying the foundation for building our stairs to eternity

   They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but the words of Bishop Fulton J. Sheen have been known to launch a thousand images in one's mind, one of the ways this late luminary did so much to evangelize the faith. Because of the urgency of the times and because few there are today who possess the wisdom, simplicity and insight than the late Archbishop who touched millions, we are bringing you daily gems from his writings. The good bishop makes it so simple that we have dubbed this daily series: "SIMPLY SHEEN".

    "There are two kinds of wisdom: wisdom of the flesh and the wisdom which God gives. One is very often opposed to the other. The first would say this is the only life there is; therefore, we should get all we can out of it. The other sees that this life is a kind of scaffolding up through which we climb to eternal happiness; it will, therefore, be so used as a ladder to the Mansions of the Heavenly Father. But this Divine Wisdom comes only those who have qualifications for receiving it, and is one of the first conditions is good behavior. As Our Blessed Lord said, 'If anyone will do My Will, he will know My doctrine.'"

May 25th Medjugorje Monthly Message

NOTE: We respectfully recognize and accept the final authority regarding apparitions, locutions and prophecies presently being reported around the world rests with the Holy See of Rome and the Magisterium of Holy Mother Church to whose judjment we humbly and obediently submit.

The Gospa's message for May "Dear children! I rejoice with you and in this time of grace I call you to spiritual renewal. Pray, little children, that the Holy Spirit may come to dwell in you in fullness, so that you may be able to witness in joy to all those who are far from faith. Especially, little children, pray for the gifts of the Holy Spirit so that in the spirit of love, every day and in each situation, you may be closer to your fellow-man; and that in wisdom and love you may overcome every difficulty. I am with you and I intercede for each of you before Jesus. Thank you for having responded to my call."

For more on Medjugorje, click on MEDJUGORJE AND MORE


June 23-25, 2000     volume 11, no. 112    Front Page