Bishop Jugis: The Eucharist is the love that can change our world
CHARLOTTE — In a world sadly in need of love, there is one place we know it can be found: at the altar in the Eucharist, Bishop Peter Jugis said during his homily at the closing Mass of the 2011 Eucharistic Congress in Charlotte on Sept. 24. Bishop Jugis encouraged his flock to embrace the Eucharist, placing Christ firmly at the center of our lives.
Catholics from across the Diocese of Charlotte filled the Charlotte Convention Center for the two-day congress, and attendance was unusually high for the closing Mass in Hall A, which was overflowing with worshippers.
The Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith, Bishop Jugis reminded the thousands of faithful, but he then asked, "Is it really the center of our life, around which everything revolves? Does the Eucharist give life to everything we do, day in, day out?"
Bishop Jugis said we should be eager to receive Christ in the Eucharist – eager to receive Him into our lives and eager to express our love for Him in all that we do.
"Are we eager to know our Christian faith? Are we eager to go to Sunday Mass?" he asked. The early Christians were, and we should model our lives on theirs, he said.
Bishop Jugis said that our love for Christ in the Eucharist should be mirrored in our love for each other and for our parish communities, just as the first Christians loved being together and caring for each other's needs.
"I want to thank you for your devotion to your parishes," he said. "Thank you for showing the world by your attendance at Mass that you are devoted to being together" and demonstrating that Sunday is the Lord's day, a reference to the theme of keynote speaker Cardinal Francis Arinze, who spoke Friday about the importance of keeping Sunday holy.
Bishop Jugis pointed out that the Apostles ordained seven deacons to minister to the needs of widows and the poor during the early days of the Church – the level of charity of the early Christians was so great that it took seven men all day every day to distribute it. This was "an avalanche" of love, an outpouring of love and eagerness to serve others that the community in Jerusalem possessed. Today, the faithful need to recapture that same sense of enthusiasm and abundance of love for one another, he said.
Too, the faithful's communal "Amen!" at the end of the Eucharistic Prayer during Mass is an expression of our eagerness to receive Christ into our lives, Bishop Jugis said. It signifies our recognition of the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, and it gives us the opportunity to worship and adore Him. He said that our enthusiastic response of faith during that moment is as if we are saying, "My Savior comes to me!"
He concluded, "May His love lift you up. Jesus eagerly desires to give Himself to you. With joy let us receive Him!"
— Patricia Guilfoyle, editor. Photos by SueAnn Howell and Patricia Guilfoyle.
Father Tadeusz Pacholczyk: Physician-assisted suicide and confronting our fearsThe prospect of a very attractive, recently-married young woman with a terminal illness facing excruciating pain and suffering as she dies is enough to move anyone. The life and death of 29-year-old Brittany Maynard recently captured enormous...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: What makes a marriage?"The consent of the parties, legitimately manifested between persons qualified by law, makes marriage..." (Canon 1057 §1) Consent is a deep-seated act of the spirit of a human person. By consent, we mean that intelligence and free will are...
Leslye Colvin: Ours to remember and shareCultures designate specific times to honor events and peoples significant to their history. Scripture proclaims that even within the first week of creation it was important to honor God on the seventh day. Humanity moves within the parameters...
W.S. "Bill" Melton Jr.: Giving thanks for those wonderful sacred souls of Sacred HeartAmong the deep-seated memories of my childhood, none are more wonderful than those created during the five years I spent at Sacred Heart Grade School in Belmont, a school operated as a ministry of the Sisters of Mercy. I didn't enroll until...
Corlis Sellers: The Ugandan Martyrs: Seeds of the Church in AfricaThe descendants of Africa had a significant role to play in the history of the Catholic Church. Among Africa's many martyrs are the Martyrs of Uganda: 22 Catholic converts who were murdered for their faith in the historical kingdom of Buganda,...
The Poor Clares: Forming beauty: Raising women of GodGentle tenderness, loving maternal care, a profoundly sensitive heart, the depths of feminine receptivity and empathy, sensitivity to beauty and the gift of nourishing and embracing the "other" – these qualities all seem to be hallmarks of...
Mercy Sister Jeanne-Margaret McNally: The history of marriageTo understand Church laws about marriage, the critical issues affecting marriage, and the discussions of the Synod on the Family, it is helpful to briefly review the history of marriage and the evolution of legislation addressing marriage. In...
LETTERS FROM OUR READERS
Many do not know about St. Gianna Beretta MolloOn July 20, 2014, Archbishop Charles Chaput announced that Pope St. John Paul II and St. Gianna Beretta Mollo have been chosen as the patron saints of the World Meeting of Families which will...
Home School Fine Arts Festival had outstanding quality, jubilant spiritIt was a pleasure to read the Sept. 12 article about the success of the Home School Fine Arts Festival. My husband and I attended the closing theatrical performance as guests, unaffiliated in...
Thank you for commentary on recent Latino CatholicsRico De Silva's recent commentary entitled "Growing number of Latino Catholics in the U.S. flying below the Church's radar" was so spot on that it had me immediately thanking God, this column,...
MOST POPULAR STORIES
- Charlotte Catholic High School names Kurt Telford principal
- Bazluki's volunteerism remembered at Charlotte Catholic
- Holy Trinity Middle School hosts broadcast of Discovery Education lesson
- Triad couple sees 'hand of God working wonders' in new baby, mom after cancer diagnosis during pregnancy
- Pope confirms he will visit Philadelphia in September
FROM THE PASTORS
Read and listen to homilies posted regularly by pastors at parishes within the Diocese of Charlotte:
- Fr. Roger Arnsparger at St. John the Baptist in Tryon
- Fr. Frank Cancro at Queen of the Apostles
- Fr. Jason Christian at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Patrick Earl at St. Peter in Charlotte
- Fr. Matthew Kauth at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Timothy Reid at St. Ann in Charlotte
- Fr. Christopher Riehl's archive from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Fr. Benjamin Roberts at Our Lady of Lourdes in Monroe
- Fr. Joshua Voitus at St. Mary, Mother of God Parish in Sylva, including homilies in Spanish
- Fr. Patrick Winslow at St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Gospel reflection videos from St. Matthew Church
- Watch full Masses live and on demand, listen to homilies and reflections from Sacred Heart Church in Salisbury
- Listen and watch homilies from St. Thomas Aquinas in Charlotte
- Listen to homilies from St. William Catholic Church in Murphy