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During these summer months, our parish continues to be filled with all kinds of activity. The past two weekends we had farewell celebrations for Fr. Marco and Fr. Joseph. It was great to have so many parishioners here to pay tribute to these two fine priests. I will miss both of them more than I can say; we formed a good team, and we have enjoyed our ministry together. I would like to express publicly my thanks to them for all they have done here. Let’s continue to support them with our prayers as they move on to new assignments.

We anxiously await the arrival of our two new parochial vicars, Fr. Mauro and Fr. Aristotle. With you, I look forward to welcoming them to our great community. I’m sure it will be fun to get to know them, and I have no doubt that they will be wonderful additions to our parish.

Meanwhile, this weekend I will observe a special day of my own: Sunday, June 25, will be the 39th anniversary of my priestly ordination. I thank God for these years of ministry, and I thank God that you and I are able to spend some of these years together. God is good to us!

Gratefully Yours,

This weekend we celebrate Father’s Day, a day to honor our fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and others who play a fatherly role in our lives. We look up to these men for guidance, we depend on them for help, and we see in them an earthly reflection of our Heavenly Father. I invite you to join me in praying for them all, whether they are still in this life or already in the next, that God may strengthen and reward them. Let’s make our own the words of the Church’s Book of Blessings:

God our Father,

in your wisdom and love you made all things.

Bless these men,

that they may be strengthened as Christian fathers.

Let the example of their faith and love shine forth.

Grant that we, their sons and daughters,

may honor them always

with a spirit of profound respect.

Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

May the Lord bless all our fathers and father figures on their special day and always!

Gratefully Yours,

This weekend we celebrate the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, often referred to as “Corpus Christi.” The Eucharist is our greatest Treasure, and is at the center of our life as Catholics. Jesus tells us clearly, “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life.” (Jn. 6:53-54) We believe that when Jesus said “This is my body….This is my blood” during the Last Supper, he meant what he said. And he gave his Apostles and their successors the power to “do this,” that is, to continue to transform bread and wine into his living Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity.

We call the transformation of bread and wine into the living presence of Christ transubstantiation. The bread and wine keep their outward appearance in every respect, but the reality—the substance—is changed. After the Consecration of the Mass, they are no longer bread and wine. They are the living presence of Jesus Christ. To be sure, this is beyond our power to understand completely, although we know that with God all things are possible.

As we celebrate this great solemnity, let’s remember also that the word “Eucharist” means “thanksgiving” in Greek. Let’s give thanks for the great Sacrament of the Body and Blood of Christ, and lead lives characterized by gratitude and love.

Gratefully Yours,

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