As this will be my very last 40 Hours here as your pastor, I ask everyone as a personal favor to try your best to attend all three nights of our services (7p) to show our love and our belief in the Real Presence of the Most Blessed Sacrament. I especially urge you to spend some quality time in private prayer while the Holy Eucharist is in the Monstrance on the Altar during the day (Sun., Mon., Tue.) of this week. It would be nice to have a FULL CHURCH on our closing (May 22) when priests & deacons of the diocese visit. Father Brighenti will be coming from New Jersey on Tuesday evening along with his parochial vicar and seminarian. Priests and seminarians from Mount St. Mary’s will also be there. I hope to back myself next year, albeit as a visitor but no longer as pastor. I am confident the Bishop will send you an excellent (and far better) replacement for me. Nevertheless, I will dearly miss all of you. This has been my only home for half my priesthood.
Forty Hours Devotions began to remind the Faithful that the wheat bread and grape wine used at Mass miraculously change (transubstantiation) into the precious Body & Blood, Soul & Divinity of Christ. We call the consecrated elements the Holy Eucharist or the Blessed Sacrament. The appearances of bread & wine remain but the substances change into the substances of the Body & Blood of our Divine Lord, Jesus Christ. Any Holy Communion left over after Mass is kept in the Tabernacle. We call this the REAL PRESENCE. This is why we kneel and genuflect whenever walking in front of the Tabernacle. This is also why we MUST keep REVERENTIAL SILENCE before and after Mass. In non-Catholic churches, after the service people chat and socialize. In Catholic churches, we are asked to SPEAK SOFTLY (whisper) because Jesus is still present in the Tabernacle. It’s a mystery but one of the core mysteries of our Christian religion.