Saint Thomas Aquinas had a deep appreciation for the Eucharist. We see this in the hymnody used on the special feast days that is devoted to pondering this “most wondrous Sacrament!” Corpus Christi’s “Panis Angelicus” (Bread of Angels) tells of the gift that the needy, the humble and the servant receive and Holy Thursday’s “Tantum ergo Sacramentum” call us to a spirit of adoration before the One who is the Living Bread come down from Heaven. As we deepen our own appreciation for the Eucharist, today’s Old Testament Scripture moves us beyond the feeding stories of individuals with bread to an invitation offered to “come and eat” (Proverbs 9:1-6). We are fed by the Lord Jesus who is the saving victim (“O salutaris hostia”).
No longer trapped by “earthly wisdom,” the people brought to eternal life by the Lord Jesus are called to a maturity of faith. Maturity also means that we become wise. Wisdom calls us to see things in a broader and more focused manner. What we see in the Eucharist is truly Jesus. What we receive in Communion is really Jesus. What we are gifted through Jesus (in the Eucharist) is Eternal Life. Eternal life is true and real.
In the past few weeks, nearly two dozen men and women of our parish were invited to participate in the first of a new program of adult faith formation through a “Christ Renews His Parish” Retreat (CRHP). In the future, each year we will have two retreats each for the men and women of our parish. It has been incredible to “see” that these men and women, already alive in the practice of their faith, have come to a new place on their spiritual journey and are pleasantly surprised by what the Lord has opened for them! Henceforth, in the late summer and in the winter, we will be offering this retreat program for all the members of our community. In addition, during the summer months, the youth of our parish participate in the “Antioch” Retreat Program which is similar in nature to CRHP. I know that this comprehensive formation process will assist us all.
As the days of August have reached their midpoint, it is a subtle reminder that Fr Ponce will soon be returning home. We will have a special Second Collection for our shared Mission in Uganda the weekend of August 29 and 30.
Soon our own children will be back to school. Soon thereafter we will also be beginning our new year for Faith Formation for them as well. I would ask parents to read the bulletin for information, visit the parish website for information and registration, and get ahead of the curve by checking on the particular programs that your children will be involved in during the coming school year!
May the week ahead be filled with countless graces and blessings!