Welcome to the Catholic Community of Sacred Heart

...a people worshiping and growing in faith. We welcome you and your family to our parish and we hope that you will find a "home" with us --and that as we grow in God's Spirit we may help one another experience the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ.

July 26, 2015, 17th Sunday in Ordinary Time

The Bread of Life This week’s scripture begins a series of Eucharistic controversies that will haunt the Gospels over the next four weeks.                                                                                                  

A few years ago the New York Times reported that almost two-thirds of American Catholics believed the consecrated bread and wine to be “symbolic reminders” rather than the body and blood of Christ. This seems a little startling, even if it was unclear what the respondents actually meant by “symbolic reminder” or “body and blood.”

Regardless of the exact interpretation of the questionnaire I think the Times-CBS poll does reveal a challenge to contemporary faith. We are witnessing the holy of holies in our very midst.  There certainly seems to be a lack of reverence, now and then, for the reality taking place at the liturgy.  A university student, intelligent and gifted in leadership, observes that he wished fellow students would give as much attention to their dress and appearance for Mass as they do for a date or job interview. An old priest, after a Mass in the infirmary, thanks me for genuflecting before the Eucharist. After a high school Eucharist, one of the theology teachers advises me to put consecrated hosts into a bin to be consecrated again the next time.

The problem of reverence, however, is nothing new. In the pre-Vatican II church, there were at least some priests who gave Communion as if it were a fast-food option. It is also not merely an American phenomenon. Perhaps the most irreverent distribution of the Eucharist I have been a part of was in Rome, where the hosts were delivered rapid-fire like quarters from a fist.  

It is wonderful that our Eucharist has become more immediate, understandable, and participatory since Vatican II. But perhaps the cost of making it understandable has been the embarrassing realization that the Mass, if we actually believe what it proclaims, is uncomfortably miraculous.

Christ has given us the Eucharist, he is doing something far greater in our midst than Elisha’s feeding of two hundred with twenty barley loaves or even Jesus’ own miracle of feeding of five thousand. What we will find in the subsequent passages of John’s Gospel is Christ’s promise to become our very bread. In faith we hold that this promise is not some mere human symbolic projection. No, we are witnessing the holy of holies in our very midst.

Many may still be skeptical. For those who believe it, awe is only appropriate.              

John Kavanaugh, S.J.

Pastor's Corner

I wish to thank the person who wants to be kept anonymous for wanting to pay for the tickets to be printed for our fall raffle. 

I want to welcome Fr. Selva Raj who will be appealing to us this weekend for prayers and support in giving us a mission appeal for the missionary activities and challenges of the Diocese of Kumbakonam, India. Please be generous. Please make checks out to Sacred Heart Parish so we can send the donations on.

Our religious education formation in the parish is being critically looked at for our grade school to our adult faith formation in order that we may have a stronger faith formation in the parish and among our Catholic population in Eureka.  More news will come later. 

Humor

This year for our pastor's birthday, the congregation decided to give him a new suit. He was so touched by the gift that the following Sunday he stood before everyone and, with tears in his eyes, announced, "Today I will be preaching to you in my birthday suit."

In Gratitude To Our Bulletin Folders

Every week Rosemary Murphy and Jeanne Nicolds volunteer to fold our parish bulletins. They donate   their time and energy in order to make sure that the bulletins are ready to go, neat and tidy. God bless you both.

OUR 2015 MISSION COOPERATIVE APPEAL IS THIS WEEKEND

The Propagation of the faith office of our diocese has invited the diocese of KUMBAKONAM, India to speak to us about their missionary activities and challenges.  We welcome, Father Selva Raj will be speaking to us during all the Masses on the weekend of July 25/26. This diocese has an area of 7823 sq km. and is situated in Tamil Nadu, South India with a Catholic population of 2,13,000 which is just 6 % of the total population. It is served by 182 diocesan and 45 religious priests, 501 nuns and 17 trained lay catechists.  The Kumbakonam diocese celebrated the centenary of its inception in 1999 by setting certain concrete and meaningful goals for a New Evangelization in the III millennium, like:

  1. We need to train 620 lay catechists to usher in the spirit of the  New Evangelization in remote and rural areas of this vast diocese
  2. Now there are 501 nuns in charge of catechetical, educational, medical and social ministries throughout this rural diocese, thus educating the children in the Catholic faith and helping the people, particularly the poor, for their integral development. We need to provide them with catechetical books and other visual tools to make the classes on religion more interesting, relevant and productive.
  3. Since education in a main means of evangelizations here, the diocese has to provide honorariums and training to our teachers while the government would not pay our teachers, due to religious discrimination.
  4. Education of 2000 very poor or orphan children from remote villages every year by providing them with free board & lodge., clothes and medicine .
  5. For conducting free medical camps for the poorest of the poor Catholics in remote missions, as a tool of evangelization.

 The diocese is trying to materialize these missionary goals, depending on the availability of funds.  Every year, an average of 50 young men and women go out of this diocese to other missions throughout India and other parts of the world to serve God and His people as missionaries.  The mission and spiritual prospects of Kumbakonam diocese are bright but its needs are pressing.  60% of its Catholics are depressingly poor.  Therefore, your fervent prayers and generous help are earnestly requested for building the KINGDOM of GOD, in  and through the diocese of KUMBAKONAM, INDIA.

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