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SOURCE AND SUMMIT OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2019 A MAGAZINE OF THE ARCHDIOCESE OF DETROIT


OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2019 VOLUME 1: ISSUE 4 P U B L I S HER

The Most Rev. Allen H. Vigneron, Archbishop of Detroit EX E C U TI VE E DITO RS

Father Stephen Pullis Edmundo Reyes ED I TO R I N C HIE F

Christine Warner

INSIDE THIS ISSUE

ED I TO R

Jennifer Scroggins A RT D I R E C TO R

Paul Duda A D V E RTI SING MANAG E R

Michelle St. Pierre I L LU S T R ATO RS

Diego Diaz Mike Marshall Bridget Stec P HOTO GR A P HE RS

Sara Altair Monica Buscher Jonathan Francis Melissa Moon Naomi Vrazo Valaurian Waller CO N T R I B UT ING W RIT E RS

Father Charles Fox Clara Fox Daniel Gallio Jenna Guizar Kathleene Haley-Falls Christopher Heffron Dr. Daniel Keating Courtney Kiolbassa Father Brian Meldrum Maria Mellis Levi Rash Paul Vachon

Patrick O’Brien P R ES I D E NT AND C E O

Elizabeth Martin Soslburg V I C E P R ESIDE NT AND E DITO RIAL D IRECTOR

Rachel Matero GR A P HI C DE SIG NE R

Innerworkings PRINTING

5 ABOUT THE COVER AND CONTRIBUTORS 7 A MESSAGE FROM THE ARCHBISHOP

FE ATU R E S 8

LIVING WITNESS Daydream believer

16 REAL TALK What is your favorite part of the Mass?

F O L LO W U S O N FAC E BO O K, INSTAGRAM AND T W IT T E R: @utgdetroit Unleash the Gospel Copyright © 2019 by the Archdiocese of Detroit is a membership publication published bimonthly (Jan, Mar, May, Jul, Sep, Nov) by the Archdiocese of Detroit, 12 State St., Detroit, MI 48226-1823. Business and Editorial Offices: 12 State St., Detroit, MI 48226-1823, Accounting and Circulation Offices: Archdiocese of Detroit, 12 State St., Detroit, MI 48226-1823. Periodicals postage is pending at Detroit, Michigan, and additional mailing offices.

42 CONVERSATIONS WITH GOD St. Francis of Assisi 46 PRAYER 101 Lift yourself up to the Lord 50 PRAYING WITH THE CHURCH FATHERS Let us hasten to the altar of Christ

D I S C I P LE S

20 SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 1 The Eucharist: Source of our life in Christ

52 FAMILY CHALLENGE Bringing the celebration home

24 SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 2 The Eucharist: Summit of all our aspirations

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SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 3 The real presence of Christ

CU LTU R E 32 POETRY Axis Mundi Waterfall 34 SACRED PL ACES City of the Immaculata

EM A I L U S : utgmagazine@aod.org V I S I T U S O NL INE : unleashthegospel.org

P R AY E R

38 OUR HISTORY It began on Canfield Street

GOING DEEPER Alone with God

60 PURSUING HOLINESS Q&A Jenna Guizar, founder and creative director of Blessed Is She

D E TR OI T 64 UNLEASHED QUESTIONNAIRE Kathleen Haley-Falls, photographic restoration specialist 66 #ASKUTG Where do you find community and support in your mission? 68 PHOTO ESSAY St. Lawrence Parish, Utica


Leave a lasting Catholic Catholic legacy. Leave a lasting legacy. Passyour your values values on generations by providing for Pass ontotofuture future generations by providing theministries ministries you andand intointo the future. for the youlove lovetoday today the future. What legacy? How willwill youbebeyour remembered?

Are you interested in creating a legacy to support a parish, school or ministry you care about? We are here to help. Visit CatholicFoundationMichigan.org or call Angela at 248.204.0332 to learn more.


TO G ET TO K NO W OU R CONTRI B U TI NG WRI TERS S OME MORE, WE ASKED TH EM

Who is a model of faith for you? FATHER CHA RLES F OX: Once, I heard an older priest draw a distinction between “holy priests” and “effective pastors.” In Archbishop Allen Vigneron, I see a model of the priesthood in whom both of these virtues exist symbiotically, and my own vocation is made clearer and stronger. CL A RA F OX: Jean Vanier, the “doctor of the heart.” His writings and talks (find him on YouTube!) on community, celebration, brokenness — drawn from his years of living with the disabled — prove that the most vulnerable teach us what it means to be human.

DESIGNED BY MIKE MARSHALL

THE COVER “While they were eating, Jesus took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and giving it to his disciples said, “Take and eat; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed on behalf of many for the forgiveness of sins.” (Mt 26:26-28) This issue, Source and Summit, celebrates the beauty of the Mass with an emphasis on the Eucharist as the “source and summit of Christian life.” (Lumen gentium, no. 11; cf. CCC, no. 1324) It is rooted in the truth and miracle of transubstantiation: The Eucharist is, in fact, the real presence of God. The cover design, with the glowing host, chalice and the prominent word “is,” depicts this truth. The Eucharist is not a mere symbol or representation — it is Christ himself.

DA NI EL GA LLI O: Pioneer priests such as Father Pierre-Jean De Smet, Father Samuel Mazzuchelli and Father Frederic Baraga. They “stepped out in faith,” as the saying goes, and acted on a perceived inner call, knowing that leaving their homelands would mean a ministry of harsh trials in a foreign land. J ENNA G U I ZA R: My husband, Mike, came to know and love Jesus Christ as a young adult, and watching him love the Lord and mature in his faith has been a great gift to me. He surrenders to the Lord even when it’s difficult. KATHLEENE HA LEY- FA LLS : My model of faith is Mother Angelica, foundress of EWTN. She began her ministry on a wing and a prayer fully trusting in God’s divine will and having a complete love for Jesus. CHRI S TOP HER HEFFRON: Don Miller, OFM, who passed away in 2017. Don combined a startling knowledge of the faith and took very seriously Pope Francis’ mandate to priests worldwide to be “shepherds living with the smell of the sheep.” D R. DA NI EL K EATI NG : The first models of faith for me were from my own family, especially through the example of my father and my older brother, John. The next set of models came from my high school, St. Ignatius in Cleveland, especially through the friendship of Father James O’Reilly and Father Robert Welsh. FATHER B RI A N MELD RU M: A great model for me of faith in Jesus is my grandmother Geraldine Meldrum. Married to my grandfather for more than 65 years and raising eight children, she now lives out her vocation as a wife and mother in quiet prayer. MA RI A MELLI S : My grandfather, Thomas Schmidt, has been a model of faith for me through his perseverance in suffering with Christ. Years before he died, he was diagnosed with a muscular degenerative disease, and I witnessed him bear many severe trials with patient trust in God. LEV I RA S H: After I traveled on mission to Calcutta, India, in 2015, St. Mother Teresa has been a model of faith to me. Her witness and fidelity to Jesus during nearly four decades of her life is outstanding and always reminds me to keep pursuing faithfulness to God. J ENNI FER S CROG G I NS : My great aunt Jeanne — my grandfather’s sister — was a tremendous model of what it means to be a Christian. She wasn’t Catholic, but she exemplified kindness and steadfast faith. She was a gentle soul whose love of God rang true not only in her words but in the way she treated others.

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DEAR JOYFUL

MISSIONARY DISCIPLE! W

HE N THE I S RAE L I TE S WAND E RE D TH R O UG H T H E DE SE RT O N T H E IR W AY TO T H E P ROM I S E D L AND , GOD GAVE THE M BREAD FROM HEAVEN TO SUSTA IN T H E M IN THE I R J OU RNE Y. I N THE GOS P E L OF J O H N , IN A PA SSAG E R E F E R R E D TO A S T H E “ B RE AD OF L I F E D I S COU RS E ,” J E S U S A N N O UN C E S T H AT H E , H IMSE LF, IS T H E F U L F I L L M E NT OF WHAT WAS P ROM I SE D:

“Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.” (Jn 6:49-51) We must reflect what Jesus is saying to us. He is the bread of life and he invites us to receive him so that we may live forever. This is the mystery of the Eucharist. Jesus present — his body, blood, soul and divinity — offered for our nourishment

“OUR ABILIT Y TO UNLEASH THE GOSPEL SPRINGS FROM THE PASSION AND RESURRECTION OF CHRIST, WHICH IS MADE PRESENT ANEW AT THE ALTAR AT EVERY MASS WE CELEBRATE.”

MAREK DZIEKONSKI, PHOTOGRAPHER

and sustenance. The Eucharist is our food for our missionary journey. Our ability to unleash the Gospel springs from the passion and resurrection of Christ, which is made present anew at the altar at every Mass we celebrate. D E P E N DIN G O N G O D

Our culture ignores the truth that we are dependent on God for our very being. We are God’s creatures who depend on his goodness. We tend to think living an independent life is how we find fulfillment. That is not the case. The Eucharist shows us how our lives are enriched and ennobled when we allow God to be part of our existence. Our minds are perhaps too small to comprehend this, but the Holy Spirit can help us grow in understanding and gratitude for this most wonderful gift. Brothers and sisters, as you read this issue, and over the next several weeks, ask Jesus to speak to your heart. Ask him to help you recognize his real presence in the

THE MOST REV. ALLEN H. VIGNERON Archbishop of Detroit DetroitArchbishop @DetArchbishop @DetroitArchbishop

Eucharist in a deeper way than you do today. Do an examination of conscience: How well do you prepare to receive Christ in the Eucharist? Do you welcome him reverently at Mass? Reflect on how you speak about the Eucharist. I also encourage you to spend more time with Christ. This could be in Eucharistic adoration or by attending one additional Mass each week or month. One of my favorite saints, Blessed John Henry Newman, whom Pope Francis was to canonize Oct. 13, has inspired me to love Christ in the Blessed Sacrament: “Let us [ask] Him to give us an earnest longing after Him — a thirst for His presence — an anxiety to find Him — a joy on hearing that He is to be found, even now, under the veil of sensible things — and a good hope that we shall find Him there.” May Mary, our Mother of the Eucharist, lead us to know and experience the real presence of her son in Holy Communion, the bread of life who is the source of our zeal to Unleash the Gospel.

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LI VING WITNE SS

Daydream BELIEVER 8

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FROM COLLEGE MUSINGS TO A LIFE IN THE PRIESTHOOD, FATHER GRAYSON HEENAN HAS ALWAYS BEEN LED BY HIS

love for the Eucharist UN L E A SH T H E G O SP E L. O R G |

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A Gothic landscape, DOTTED WITH SPIRES, IMPOSING STONE

STRUCTURES AND WINDING LANES … IT SOUNDS LIKE SOMETHING FROM A HARRY POTTER BOOK, BUT IT BECAME THE SETTING FOR A CALLING TO THE PRIESTHOOD. FOR DOWN ONE OF THOSE WINDING LANES WAS A CHAPEL WHERE THE EUCHARIST — TUCKED AWAY IN THE TABERNACLE, LIT SOFTLY BY A BURNING CANDLE — CONVEYED “A MYSTERIOUS PRESENCE” TO A COLLEGE STUDENT WHOSE HEART WAS ABOUT TO OPEN AS NEVER BEFORE.

“My faith came alive in that chapel,” Father Grayson Heenan says of St. Mary’s Chapel at Boston College, his undergraduate alma mater. Though he’s a cradle Catholic, Father Grayson says he was “acquiring new eyes” through which to see aspects of his faith, especially the Eucharist. “God was reaching out into the world to be in fellowship with me,” he recalls. “I was essentially falling in love with God.” And so along that winding path in Boston continued a journey that had begun — without Grayson really knowing it — when he was a child in Michigan before it meandered through his young-adult musings and led ultimately to his ordination as a priest for the Archdiocese of Detroit in 2017. “The Eucharist is the heart and soul of everything we do,” Father Grayson says. “Then, hopefully, everything we do becomes eucharistic.”

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THE FIRST SIGNS Grayson had a loving Catholic upbringing with his parents, Earl “Rusty” and Anne, and regularly attended Mass at St. Paul on the Lake in Grosse Pointe Farms. Grayson played hockey and soccer and swam in the lakes of Northern Michigan. At school, he occasionally got called down to the principal’s office — and occasionally got teased by his older sister, Liz. In the weeks leading to his ordination, Liz couldn’t help but remind her brother of his first attempt at assisting at Mass, when he was about 9. “I could barely make it through my first intention,” Father Grayson recalls. His nerves made him stutter.

CLARA FOX, WRITER • NAOMI VRAZO, PHOTOGRAPHER


JOYFUL EXAMPLES Grayson experienced a pivotal moment in college thanks to Father Chris Collins, a Jesuit priest who asked him, “When you catch yourself daydreaming during class or walking across the quad, what are you daydreaming about?” The question resonated with Grayson, who realized his daydreams showed his heart’s desires. “It was a good question, because what I was daydreaming about was saying Mass, hearing confessions and doing priest things.” He adds, “It was a sign of God’s grace moving my mind in that direction.” He was also pleasantly surprised to find that these daydreams gave him joy. But there was also an attraction to married life and the idea of having children. “It’s a dramatic price to pay,” Father Grayson says. “You start to awaken to the sacrifice of becoming a priest.” But Father Grayson says he discovered something about celibacy. “It’s a paradoxical ‘yes’ to both a certain kind of loneliness and also a certain kind of closeness with Jesus,” he explains, “and therefore, his close relationship with the Father.” Father Grayson adds, “Our loneliness should plunge us deeper into the search for God the Father.” This concern about loneliness initially made his family hesitant to support Grayson’s vocation. He remembers his family thinking that the priesthood would be “a lonely, miserable, difficult trial of a life.” Yet when Grayson was attending Sacred Heart Major Seminary, his family could see his joy and friendship with his fellow seminarians. They saw that he was part of a community, and he would often bring his seminarian friends over to the house to be with his family. “They saw really good friendships,” he says. “They’ve come around to support me greatly.”

THE EUCHARIST IS THE HEART AND SOUL OF EVERYTHING WE DO. THEN HOPEFULLY EVERYTHING WE DO BECOMES EUCHARISTIC.”

“The p-p-pope, the p-p-pope” became something his sister loved to tease him about. But it was at about this age that Grayson first heard a calling. “It was a kind of thought, a kind of feeling, a kind of tug, a kind of attraction. You could even say a kind of excitement,” he says, describing the moment at Mass when he looked up at the priest and thought, That will be me one day. A separate unspoken voice seemed to be agreeing, ‘That will be you one day.’” Grayson’s young age meant there would be plenty of time to consider his response to the calling. “He gave me time to weigh it and consider it, and I wrestled with it. And then joy broke through,” he says of God’s timing.

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Father Grayson notes that he needed to witness examples of joyful priests to be completely satisfied with his decision. “I have a lot of great priests to thank over the years who modeled the priesthood of Jesus and who lived their celibacy in a way that was fruitful,” he says. “I think (God) respected my need to see happy, joyful priests living out their priesthood, and I think he put those people in my life at the right moments.” These priests were a reflection of God’s love, Father Grayson says, embodying Galatians 2:20 in which St. Paul says, “Yet I live, no longer I, but Christ lives in me.” This is Father Grayson’s life goal. “If I visit people in their homes or hospitals,” he says, “I hope it’s as St. Paul says.”

ANIMATING THE REAL PRESENCE One child making his first Communion told Father Grayson, “This is the best day of my life.” And Father Grayson agrees: “In a mystical way, it makes them an extension of God in the world.” He explains, “When we celebrate the Eucharist, we bring ourselves before the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. We receive that presence, and when we go out from Mass, we, in some way, communicate that presence to those we come in contact with.” A coffee with a friend or saying hello to a co-worker becomes eucharistic the more we live our Catholic faith. “I think our Christian faith is meant to animate our lives even in the simplest of things,” Father Grayson says. “People come to value your presence, and you become a bright spot in their day. You can lift them up.” Father Grayson acknowledges that a recent Pew Research report says that just one-third of Catholics believe in transubstantiation and the real presence. “When you immerse yourself in the cynical realism of the world, you lose touch with the living and breathing faith,” he says. “And you lose out on the beauty and fullness of what it offers.” The message of Unleash the Gospel is about communicating this mystery of the Eucharist to those we meet, often without words, he says. “It’s communicating that presence that we receive. It’s doing the same things we’ve always done … but with a greater faith.”

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WHEN YOU IMMERSE YOURSELF IN THE CYNICAL REALISM OF THE WORLD, YOU LOSE TOUCH WITH THE LIVING AND BREATHING FAITH.” — FATHER GRAYSON HEENAN


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RE A L TA LK The Mass is the ultimate prayer, a commemoration and celebration of Our Lord’s Last Supper. We come together to pray, to remember, to celebrate, to be in relationship with Jesus — but also to be in community with each other. A colleague recently invited me to Mass at St. Aloysius in Detroit. This beautiful, 146-year-old church is in the heart of downtown Detroit. Its beauty was inspiring. I reflected on the mosaic of the Good Shepherd that overshadows the altar and congregation, and I couldn’t help but look at the flock of sheep and think of Jesus seeking that one lost lamb. I thought of the congregation, the community of believers. We are those sheep seeking Jesus just as he seeks us!

PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

It suddenly dawned on me: My special moment occurs during Communion when the congregation rises, approaches the altar and joins in the procession to receive our Lord in the Eucharist. The priest proclaims, “The body of Christ,” and the faithful respond, “Amen.” The repeated hum of the proclamation and our response became a prayer in my heart. The congregation coming forward and receiving our precious Lord is united as one community. One community, one flock receiving Jesus, the true presence. Infusing us with his presence. This the culmination of our faith — our communal act uniting us to Jesus and to each other. - LINDA ROOT, ST. MARY OF THE WOODS, KALKASKA

WHAT IS YOUR

FAVORITE

For a majority of my life, I have been heavily involved in the service side of Mass: youth group, altar server, parish council, choir member, lector, St. Vincent de Paul volunteer and, most recently, a professional photographer for the archdiocese. I mention all this to say that I’ve been able to experience many different facets of Church life and worship. What has consistently been my favorite, however, and the thing I look most forward to is the homily. Msgr. Daniel Trapp has a way of making sure you walk away having learned something. He’s absolutely amazing at contextualizing the Gospel and bringing it alive by roping in historical references and personal anecdotes. I find myself thinking back to it during the rest of the week and the parallels to my own life. - VALAURIAN WALLER, ST. AUGUSTINE/ST. MONICA, DETROIT

PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

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It is hard to answer this question when you have encountered God in your life and when you really start appreciating Mass from beginning to end. To be honest, I thought Mass was boring before knowing our Lord. It just seemed long, boring and without meaning, but things are quite different now. It is hard to answer this question because I just love Mass in its entire essence. Knowing that I’m preparing myself with each part of the liturgy to get to the highest point, witness the priest praying for God to send his Holy Spirit to change the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Jesus makes me love every bit of the Mass. … I love Mass in all its splendor.

MASS? - ANTONIO GUZMAN, MOST HOLY REDEEMER CHURCH, DETROIT

PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

PART OF THE

The Gloria. When I was 22, I was hospitalized with a life-threatening illness. The day after I left the hospital, I attended Mass, and during the Gloria I envisioned praising God forever with all the angels and saints and all my loved ones. I was already a follower, but in this moment I had a glimpse of what eternity would be like. I knew that everything beautiful I had ever known in life was a reflection of God. I knew that he was with me. He created me for heaven, to see him face to face and dwell with him forever. I have a family and little kids now, so it’s sometimes harder to notice the reflection of eternity in Mass … or pay attention at all. But I have to keep going back to that moment when God shared his plans for heaven with me! - ANDY FARNSWORTH, ST. MARY’S OF REDFORD, DETROIT PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

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My favorite parts of the Mass are the homilies and music. I began to realize this during my college years and into my young adult years at St. John Vianney in Shelby Township. Music has always been a deciding factor for me on which parish I belong to. I enjoy that each song throughout the Mass is articulately chosen in accordance with the readings of that day, which makes the music a pivotal part of each Sunday. When individuals follow along and participate with the music each week, it makes Mass a more prayerful and enjoyable experience. On the other hand, a parish or priest that gives an excellent homily is an equally favorite part of Mass for me. I personally enjoy homilies that give real-life examples of how they are tied back to the readings of that day. When we can identify or even empathize with individuals in the readings week over week, we find greater purpose to attend Mass each Sunday. I’m very fortunate to belong to a parish that has both great homilies and great music. - TREY BAUMAN, ST. JOHN VIANNEY, SHELBY TOWNSHIP PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

PHOTO BY MELISSA MOON

As a mother of three young children, Mass can get a little chaotic. Even in that chaos, my favorite part of the Mass is the elevation of the Eucharist and the gift of receiving it. As a convert, the elevation of the Eucharist was the first moment where I encountered Jesus fully (even though I could not receive him). It is what drew me into my conversion. More recently, I had an experience going up to receive Communion where I was filled with the knowledge that every person coming before Christ, every soul filling that church, knelt before the Lord with their own pain, their own fear and their own burdens. It didn’t matter whether I knew them or liked them. He looked on each one of us — hurting, broken, rejoicing and absentminded alike — with the deepest love imaginable and offered himself to us fully. We are all equal before the Lord. It is a beautiful reminder to me that nothing I do earns my salvation and that nothing we do changes his love for us. He has come in our weakness to give us his life. - RAKHI MCCORMICK, GUARDIAN ANGELS PARISH, CLAWSON

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SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 1

SOURCE OF OUR LIFE IN CHRIST In Jesus’ body and blood, we receive nourishment for our journey toward heaven

“OUT OF THE DARKNESS OF MY LIFE, SO MUCH FRUSTRATED, I PUT BEFORE YOU THE ONE GREAT THING TO LOVE ON EARTH: THE BLESSED SACRAMENT ... THERE YOU WILL FIND ROMANCE, GLORY, HONOUR, FIDELITY, AND THE TRUE WAY OF ALL YOUR LOVES UPON EARTH ... WHICH EVERY MAN’S HEART DESIRES.” 20

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—J.R.R. TOLKIEN


EVERY GREAT STORY HAS A BEGINNING, A CLIMAX AND AN END. EVERY JOURNEY HAS A STARTING POINT AND A DESTINATION. EVERY HUMAN ACCOMPLISHMENT BEGINS WITH A MOMENT OF INSPIRATION; IS FUELED BY A COMBINATION OF TALENT, VISION, ENERGY AND DRIVE; AND FINDS FULFILLMENT IN MEETING A DESIRED GOAL. The Christian life is a great story, an epic journey and an accomplishment unlike any other. And our Catholic tradition identifies one key to all of these aspects of our life in Christ. One reality serves as the beginning, climax and end of our story of faith; as the starting point and destination of the Church’s journey from death to life and from earth to heaven; and as the inspiration, fuel and fulfillment of all that Christ has accomplished in our salvation. The key to all of this is the sacrament of the holy Eucharist, which J.R.R. Tolkien rightly calls, “The one great thing to love on earth.” The Catechism of the Catholic Church, echoing the teaching of the fathers of the Second Vatican Council, identifies the Eucharist as the “source and summit of the Christian life.” (1324) This article will explore what the Church means when she identifies the Eucharist as “source” of the Christian life, while the second article will consider the sacrament as “summit.”

Our exploration of the meaning of the Eucharist requires a bit of basic preparation, however. There are four doctrines, or teachings, that will prepare our minds to understand the dual role the Eucharist plays in Christian life. Those four doctrines are the Eucharist as a sacrament, the Eucharist as a sacrifice, the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist and transubstantiation, the change of bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ.

THE EUCHARIST AS A SACRAMENT The Eucharist is one of the seven sacraments instituted by Jesus Christ to communicate his saving grace to his people. The catechism names the Eucharist “the sacrament of sacraments” (1211), and this title is rooted in the teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas, who in his Summa Theologica writes that the Eucharist, in relation to the other sacraments, “is greater than all the others and perfects them.” The sacraments are saving gifts of Christ to his Church, given so that, after his Ascension, his followers on earth can encounter him and have life in union with him. The visible signs or “appearances” of the Eucharist — bread and wine — are very humble, but their humility speaks to us of the incredible humility involved in the Son of God becoming man in the first place for our salvation. The sacraments are a masterstroke of God’s artistry, effectively communicating to us what would otherwise be incommunicable: God’s own life, love, grace and power.

THE EUCHARIST AS A SACRIFICE An often-forgotten truth about the Eucharist is that it refers both to a sacrifice and a sacrament. Holy Mass, which we often call the celebration of

FATHER CHARLES FOX, STD, WRITER • MIKE MARSHALL, ILLUSTRATOR

the Eucharist, is a sacrifice. That is why it is enacted on an altar and not merely a table. In the Mass, the supreme and final sacrifice of Calvary, the sacrificial death of the Son of God for our salvation, is represented — made present once again — on the altar. Many questions have arisen over the centuries about how the Mass can be a sacrifice, and we cannot even ask, let alone answer, all such questions here. But it is the faith of the Catholic Church that Christ meant what he said at the Last Supper, the first Mass: “This is my body, which will be given for you … This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which will be shed for you,” and, “Do this in memory of me.” (Lk 22:19-20) In these words, Christ offers his body and blood precisely as a sacrificial gift for us, and he commands us to do what he has done. Msgr. Ronald Knox, an English priest and apologist of the first half of the 20th century, writes that the Mass is like the performance of a great symphony. Composed once by a master, it is then performed countless times by those who gladly offer again what the one master has accomplished. The Mass is the bloody sacrifice of the cross offered in an unbloody way, so that we first might be able to join ourselves to Christ as he offers himself to the Father and then “taste and see that the Lord is good.” (Ps 34:9)

THE REAL PRESENCE AND TRANSUBSTANTIATION The last two foundational doctrines concerning the Eucharist, the real presence and transubstantiation, are so closely linked that we can consider them together. As with the Mass as a sacrifice, so in teaching these doctrines the Church takes seriously the words of Jesus, repeated at every

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Mass: “This is my body” and “This is the chalice of my blood.” Notice, he does not say, “This bread is my body” or “This wine is my blood.” In his 2003 encyclical on the Eucharist, Ecclesia de Eucharistia (The Church of the Eucharist), Pope St. John Paul II reminds us that there are many ways in which Christ is present in the world, but the Eucharist is his presence par excellence. Christ is present in his word, especially proclaimed at Mass; in the poor and needy; in priests; and in the assembly of people gathered to worship. But the completeness, immediacy and substantial nature of Christ’s presence in the sacrament of his body and blood are unmatched. My reference to the “substantial nature” of Christ’s presence brings us to the doctrine of transubstantiation. This term comes from the Latin words for “across” and “substance,” indicating that the change involves crossing the gulf between the substances of bread and wine and the substance of Christ’s body and blood. At the consecration, when the priest pronounces the words of Christ over the elements of bread and wine, the change into Christ’s body and blood is immediate, complete and irreversible. God’s power makes this change possible.

THE ‘SOURCE’ OF THE CHRISTIAN LIFE Is the Last Supper also a beginning supper? Absolutely, yes. The first celebration of the Eucharist is one of the landmark beginning points of the Church’s life. At the Last Supper, Christ instituted the priesthood among his apostles and charged them to “do this in memory of me,” to offer the same sacrifice and share with his people the gift of his body and blood. The Second Vatican Council teaches that in the Eucharist, grace pours forth “as from a fountain,” nourishing God’s people and

giving them life in the Holy Spirit. The Eucharist is what one of my own seminary professors calls “the sacrament of transforming intimacy,” because by its powerful graces it draws us into union with Christ and makes us more like him. We often speak of our need to follow Christ, and that is certainly necessary, but we do not do this by our own power. We first become like Christ so we can follow him by his power and the power of his Spirit at work in us. Our tradition teaches that the Christian life is a pilgrimage from earth to heaven and through death to life. This journey is one of the meanings of the word “Passover” or “paschal.” In the Old Testament, we witness God leading his people through the desert, from Egypt to the Promised Land, nourishing them along the way with manna, heavenly bread designed and given by God specifically for the task of keeping the Israelites on the move. The Eucharist is the perfect manna, the new manna given by Christ, which also is Christ. And the Eucharist is specifically crafted by God to nourish us in just the ways we need in order to make our pilgrimage through the narrow and difficult way of this world that leads to life eternal. That is why St. Thomas Aquinas refers to every reception of the Eucharist as Viaticum, or “food for the journey.” The whole of our lives is a journey, and each day is another step toward heaven or hell. So, we need heavenly nourishment to walk in the right direction, to move ever upward toward our true homeland, what St. Paul calls the place of our true citizenship: heaven.

friendship with him. This is why the Eucharist is often the cause of conversions to the Catholic Church. Countless people over the centuries have been thunderstruck by the awesome presence of Emmanuel, “God with us,” here and now. Pope Benedict XVI has famously written in his 2005 encyclical Deus Caritas Est (God Is Love), “Being a Christian is not the result of an ethical choice or a lofty idea, but the encounter with an event, a person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.” Pope Francis also has heavily emphasized the role of encountering Christ as the essential beginning of the Christian life. There is no better opportunity for this encounter than when meeting Christ present in the Eucharist, whether in Mass or in eucharistic adoration. From this encounter, then, intimacy with Christ begins to take shape and deepen. By spending time with him — gazing upon him in worship and praise, thanksgiving and petition; by living a more eucharistic life, a life of self-sacrificing love and service, of humility and all the other virtues — friendship with Christ grows and grows. “I have called you friends,” Christ said to his first disciples in John 15:15. Friendship with Christ is virtually synonymous with the Christian life. The Eucharist is the “source” of this friendship, and perfect friendship with Christ in the Eucharist is a “summit” to which we ever aspire, as such friendship is the immediate preparation for exactly the life we will enjoy forever in heaven.

AN ENCOUNTER OF FRIENDSHIP A final combination of ways in which the Eucharist acts as the “source” of the Christian life is that in the sacrament we encounter Christ and find the possibility of

FATHER CHARLES FOX, STD is a priest of the Archdiocese of Detroit currently assigned to the theology faculty of Sacred Heart Major Seminary. He is also a weekend associate pastor at St. Therese of Lisieux Parish in Shelby Township and chaplain and a board member of St. Paul Evangelization Institute, headquartered in Warren.

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SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 2

SUMMIT OF ALL OUR ASPIRATIONS The mystery of holy Communion gives our lives meaning and direction SALVATION HISTORY — THE UNFOLDING STORY OF CHRIST’S LIFE, DEATH AND RESURRECTION AND ITS MEANING FOR OUR LIVES — INVOLVES A PAST, PRESENT AND A FUTURE. IN HIS HYMN FOR THE GREAT FEAST OF CORPUS CHRISTI, O SACRUM CONVIVIUM (“O SACRED BANQUET”), ST. THOMAS AQUINAS IDENTIFIES THREE CRUCIAL MOMENTS OF SALVATION HISTORY THAT ARE ALL WOVEN INTO THE MYSTERY OF THE HOLY EUCHARIST: • A  t a particular moment in the past, Jesus Christ suffered and died for our salvation; • today, that supernova of grace becomes present to us once again on the altar of sacrifice, and we are able to receive his body and blood; and • we are promised a future, one we begin to taste now as we celebrate the Eucharist, but which will be definitively fulfilled in heaven. The world today has lost its meaning. People often lack any deep sense of purpose or direction. Their goals are too often reduced to seeking pleasure, rest or distraction. And when those goals prove unsatisfying, they give up altogether on the goodness of life. In the Eucharist, we find the exact antidote to this cancer of the human spirit. The truth that the all-holy Son of God chooses to become present among us — chooses to nourish us, to share his life and strength with us, to remain with us so we can worship him and grow in friendship with him — infuses our lives with an immeasurably rich meaning. We find this meaning in the story of our salvation, made present in the Eucharist. The saving death of the Son of God; the graces the risen Son gives to us today; and the promise that we will live with him, and with the Father and the Holy Spirit, forever, charge every moment of our lives with drama and importance. Pope Benedict XVI, in a 2007 document on the Eucharist, Sacramentum Caritatis (The Sacrament of Charity), uses

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an apt expression: “the eucharistic form of the Christian life.” We have in this single phrase an encapsulation of the immeasurably great and rich reality into which we are immersed when we encounter Christ in the Eucharist, and into which we invite others as we evangelize. The Christian life is eucharistic in many senses. In this article, our focus is on the Eucharist as the “summit” to which we aspire, to which the pilgrimage of our entire earthly lives is directed. Our focus on the Eucharist as the summit of our lives will take shape as an exploration of four themes: union with Christ and each other in him, the Eucharist as the sacrament of peace, the Eucharist and the universal call to holiness and the Eucharist as a foretaste and promise of heaven. We will see that these themes are interrelated.

UNION WITH CHRIST AND HIS CHURCH One of the names we use for the Eucharist is holy Communion, and the root meaning of the word “communion” is deep, binding union. The word “religion” has a similar meaning. At the essence of the Church’s life is our union with Jesus Christ. We are his body; he is our head. We are that closely bound to one another. If you ask the question, “What’s going on, spiritually?” when we celebrate the Mass and receive Communion, the best answer is that we are being drawn into closer union with Christ and to one another. And to be drawn into union with Christ means we also become more united with the Father and the Holy Spirit. This reflection puts us in touch with two passages from the Last Supper in John’s Gospel: • The Vine and the Branches (Jn 15:1-8) — In this passage, Jesus clearly teaches that union with him brings life, while separation from him brings death; and


“O SACRED BANQUET, WHEREIN CHRIST IS RECEIVED, THE MEMORY OF HIS PASSION IS RECALLED, THE SOUL IS FILLED WITH GRACE, AND THERE IS GIVEN TO US A PLEDGE OF FUTURE GLORY.” —ST. THOMAS AQUINAS, O SACRUM CONVIVIUM (HYMN FOR CORPUS CHRISTI)

FATHER CHARLES FOX, STD, WRITER • MIKE MARSHALL, ILLUSTRATOR

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• C  hrist’s invitation to the household of his father (Jn 14:2-3, “In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places …”) — The image of a household evokes intimacy and shared life, so to be invited into the Father’s household promises that we will share in the very life of the Holy Trinity.

in God’s love. The Eucharist prepares our hearts to love, and because it is filled with the self-sacrificing love of Jesus Christ, it in turn fills our hearts with his divine love.

THE EUCHARIST AS THE BREAD OF HEAVEN

THE EUCHARIST AND THE UNIVERSAL CALL TO HOLINESS

“Our citizenship is in heaven,” St. Paul tells us in Philippians 3:20. A simple way of expressing the salvation Christ has won for us is to say that the Son of God has come to earth that he might bring us to heaven. The great Christian apologist C.S. Lewis once wrote that for many of us, the way we live our lives today, the joys of heaven would prove to be an acquired taste. In the Eucharist, we acquire the taste for heaven’s goodness. We become more spiritual, more godly, more loving and virtuous. We learn to set aside not only what is sinful but also that which is merely earthly. We learn to prioritize God and his kingdom. The Eucharist empowers our conversion, which we can think of as a turning away from the world toward God and the life of heaven. The Eucharist, as an experience of heaven on earth, allows the Christian to appropriate more deeply the divine life God offers him. Msgr. Ronald Knox once preached in a sermon on the Eucharist, “We must be weaned away from earth first; and the means by which he does that is holy Communion. That is the medicine which enables the enfeebled soul to look steadily at the divine light, to breathe deeply of the unfamiliar air.” In his Bread of Life discourse, Jesus speaks of the “bread of heaven” that he will give so that his disciples might go enjoy divine life (Jn 6:32-33, 51): Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world … I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.

One of the clarion calls of the Second Vatican Council was the “universal call to holiness,” the truth that all people are called to become holy, not just those with vocations to the priesthood or consecrated life. The call to holiness is rooted in the sacrament of baptism, but finds its culmination in the Eucharist. The Eucharist, being the “sacrament of sacraments,” completes Christian initiation (baptism, confirmation and holy Communion) and is the greatest source of sanctifying (holiness-effecting) power Christ has given us. “So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect,” Jesus says in his Sermon on the Mount. (Mt 5:48) To be like the Father is to love, because “God is love.” (1 Jn 4:8) St. Thomas Aquinas teaches that the perfection to which Christ calls us is especially perfection in charity, or Christian love. He further writes that the freedom from sin effected by the Eucharist is the surest path to sharing

In the same discourse, Jesus teaches that to refuse the bread of life is to refuse the life the Eucharist gives. Hell is a real threat for those who knowingly choose to live outside of communion in Christ’s body and blood. But for those who believe, who live faithful lives as followers of Christ and members of his Church and who participate in the sacrifice and the sacrament of the Eucharist, eternal life is their inheritance. The “eucharistic form of life,” then, is a life oriented to heaven, a life of perfection in the divine love of the Father, a life lived in imitation of the Lord Jesus, a life entirely animated by the Holy Spirit. The Eucharist fills our lives with meaning and both empowers and accompanies us until our lives reach their fulfillment, when we complete our pilgrimage and ascend to the summit of union with God and eternal life in him.

The very elements of bread and wine signify the union the sacrament of the Eucharist effects, as St. Paul reminds us. He writes in 1 Corinthians 10:17, “Because the loaf of bread is one, we, though many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf.” The same is true of the wine consecrated into the blood of Christ. Many grapes are crushed so that they might become one drink. In this way, the appearances of the Eucharist remind us of the spiritual reality at work in the sacrament. God is truly the best of authors and artists, and he knows well how to communicate his life and truth to us.

THE SACRAMENT OF PEACE At the Last Supper, Jesus told his apostles, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.” (Jn 14:27) But what does Christ mean by “peace”? Peace is not about merely leaving other people alone. The Eucharist brings true peace because it strengthens our peace with God, within ourselves and with others. Three “fruits” of holy Communion, according to the catechism (1393-95), are that the sacrament separates us from sin, wipes away our venial (less serious) sins and preserves us from future mortal (gravely serious) sins. To sin is to commit an act of spiritual violence against God, ourselves and other people. Sin is an act of war. Insofar as the Eucharist acts against sin, it brings us the peace of Jesus Christ.

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SOURCE AND SUMMIT PART 3

PRESENCE OF CHRIST

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How we know from Scripture that Jesus is fully with us in the Eucharist — and how we can witness this truth to those who struggle to believe


A RECENT PEW RESEARCH SURVEY POLLED CATHOLICS ON THEIR BELIEF IN THE EUCHARIST. ONLY ABOUT ONE-THIRD OF SELF-IDENTIFIED CATHOLICS PROFESSED TO BELIEVE IN JESUS’ REAL PRESENCE IN THE EUCHARIST. WHILE THIS NUMBER IS SHOCKING FOR MANY WHO BELIEVE IN AND LOVE DEEPLY THIS CENTRAL SACRAMENT OF OUR CATHOLIC FAITH, THE QUESTION THAT SHOULD MOST CONCERN US IS: WHAT CAN I DO ABOUT THIS? BEFORE WE EXPLORE THAT ASPECT, LET’S EXPLORE WHAT JESUS SAYS ABOUT THE EUCHARIST.

THE EUCHARIST IN THE GOSPELS His words (and actions!) in all four Gospels frequently reference this sacrament. The two key areas where Christ speaks most clearly about the Eucharist are the Last Supper accounts, found in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, and in his “Bread of Life” Discourse in the Gospel of John. The first three Gospel writers present the same reality of Jesus gathering his closest followers — his apostles — into the Upper Room that was prepared for the Passover. The Last Supper is Jesus’ fulfillment of the Passover celebration, the annual ritual remembrance of God saving the Jewish people from slavery in Egypt and leading them into the Promised Land. During this rite, Jesus takes unleavened bread and speaks new words over them: “Take and eat; this is my body.” (Mt 26:26) Then taking the cup of wine, he says, “This is the blood of the covenant, which will be shed for many.” (Mk 14:24)

He concludes with the words, “Do this in memory of me.” (Lk 22:19) The apostles partake of what Jesus offers, the bread and the wine that he has called his body and his blood. Jesus’ words are deep and profound but also clear and simple. What was previously bread and wine are no longer such. Through the divine power of Jesus, the Son of God, they have changed their very substance. Though their appearance does not change — they look, smell and taste no different than before these words were spoken — something substantially different is now there. As the humanity of Jesus hid the reality of his divinity (for he was truly God made man), the outward sign of bread and wine hide the reality of Jesus’ presence in the Eucharist. We call this incredible change in the Eucharist “transubstantiation” to show that the substance has changed. This change is effected in two ways. First, by the word of God. In the first chapter of Genesis, we read, “Then God said: Let there be

FATHER STEPHEN PULLIS, STL, WRITER • MIKE MARSHALL, ILLUSTRATOR

light, and there was light.” (Gn 1:3) When God speaks a word, it comes into being. He makes present what he speaks. By the same power — for we profess in the Nicene Creed that Jesus is “consubstantial with the Father” — the word of Jesus makes present what he speaks, most clearly when he says, “This is my body.” Secondly, Jesus’ words at the Last Supper are fulfilled on the cross. It is here that Jesus becomes “the blood of the covenant, shed for many.” Additionally, Jesus gave to his apostles the power to “do this in memory” of him. Not only did he share the gift of his body and blood with them, but he taught them to be ministers of this great gift to others who enter into this covenant in his blood. Therefore, the Eucharist became central to the life of the Church. St. Paul writes to the community at Corinth that he is not making up something new for them but rather is handing on exactly what he received in the Eucharist. (cf. 1 Cor 11:23-26) The other clear text in the Gospels comes to us from John. Here we hear Jesus speak the words: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.” He then continues a few lines later to emphasize his point, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you,” and, “My flesh is true food and my blood is true drink.” (Jn 6:5156) Reading this whole discourse (Jn 6:22-71) paints a vivid picture of the intensity of Jesus’ teaching.

WHAT CAN WE DO TODAY? Many Catholics do not believe in this “source and summit” of our faith. Some have never been

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WHAT WAS PREVIOUSLY BREAD AND WINE ARE NO LONGER SUCH. THROUGH THE DIVINE POWER OF JESUS, THE SON OF GOD, THEY HAVE CHANGED THEIR VERY SUBSTANCE.”

confronted with the reality of the Eucharist; others have drifted away due to poor catechesis, poor example or the distractions of our post-Christian society. How should we respond to this crisis of belief in the Eucharist? First, we must make sure we ourselves are worthy to receive this great gift. Never on our own could we be truly worthy, but Christ makes us worthy through our baptism and our participation with his grace. I worthily receive Jesus when I repent of any serious (mortal) sin before reception of Communion. This means I must make a sacramental confession before receiving Communion, if I have these sins in my life. Taking seriously the reality of the Eucharist — including regular participation in Sunday Mass — should be our first response. Second, seek out regular opportunities to spend time before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, especially in eucharistic adoration. St. Augustine is known to have said, “No one partakes of this Flesh before he has adored it.” Adoring Jesus in the Eucharist leads us to be more prepared and more conscious of what (and who) he is offering us. There are numerous eucharistic adoration chapels around the Archdiocese of Detroit. (The archbishop’s pastoral letter, Unleash the Gospel, called for every parish to

create regular times for eucharistic adoration and to promote its participation.) For many people, this silent time in the presence of Jesus is an antidote to our busy, noisy, demanding lives. Even 30 minutes per week — one TV show’s worth of time — spent quietly before our Lord can increase our faith in the Eucharist and make us more ready to share this truth with others. In fact, inviting a friend to join you in this time of silence is an easy and effective way to evangelize. Finally, small acts of devotion to the Eucharist are great ways to stir up our own faith in Jesus and humbly witness to others the awesomeness of the real presence. For some people, this is simply whispering, “My Lord and my God” at the elevation of the host or chalice during the Mass or making the sign of the cross when they drive past a church. Silently praying after the reception of Communion, or genuflecting when approaching the tabernacle or entering the church, demonstrates that there is something special happening there. Priests, deacons and extraordinary ministers have a special task in communicating the real presence of Christ in the way we handle the Eucharist. Do we treat this sacrament like it is something ordinary, or do we handle it deliberately, reverently and solemnly?

CONTINUED THROUGHOUT THE AGES The life-giving message of the real presence continued after the events written about in the Bible. St. Ambrose, bishop of Milan in the fifth century, preached very clearly on the real presence of the Eucharist: “Before it is consecrated, it is bread. But when Christ’s words have been added, it is the body of Christ.” (On the Sacraments, 4.5) In the second century, St. Justin Martyr wrote about the Eucharist: “For not as common bread and common drink do we receive these; but in like manner as Jesus Christ our Savior, having been made flesh by the Word of God, had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so likewise have we been taught that the food which is blessed by the prayer of His word, and from which our blood and flesh by transmutation are nourished, is the flesh and blood of that Jesus who was made flesh.” (First Apology, 66)

Receiving Jesus in the Eucharist is the closest we will get to heaven this side of eternity. In all our interactions with the Eucharist, Christ invites us to see with eyes of faith that he is truly present, offering himself to us each time we go to Mass or spend time with him in adoration.

FATHER STEPHEN PULLIS, STL is the director of evangelization, catechesis and youth ministry for the Archdiocese of Detroit and serves as a weekend associate at St. John Vianney Parish in Shelby Township and as an adjunct spiritual director at Sacred Heart Major Seminary. He also co-hosts Open Door Policy, a podcast series featuring conversations with missionary disciples throughout Southeast Michigan. Tune in at unleashthegospel.org/podcasts.

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POETRY

AXIS MUNDI BY COURTN E Y K I O L B ASSA

Existing at the center, like pressing my ear to my mother’s chest. She can fit her arms around my whole small frame, she pulls me close. I hear a steady baritone thudding against her ribs— her heartbeat certain, saying, I am, you are, I am. That same pulse fluttered at my birth and long before: a history sprawling beneath me. A heritage reaching through centuries. This steady shelter. This backbone place. The rising rhythm of her breath lulls my chaos thoughts and the sharp world softens beneath my heavy eyelids. That is how it feels to be here, the axis mundi, center of it all, where beginnings and endings run together seamlessly. Where mystery greets me, where love holds me near. Here, where I can slip into the heart’s tide and the world falls away.

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BRIDGET STEC, ILLUSTRATOR


WATERFALL BY M ARI A M E L L I S

Love can be so true, deep, penetrating, permanent, not through any far-reaching impetus of my own, But in Your faithful enrobement, not encasing but freeing My heart to be a sponge for Your sweetness, A fortification against sinful despairing (Evil not in the emotion but in the self-centered habits that permit the intrusion). Abide in me, Jesus. Stay with me, Christ. Life-giving gaze, most tender compassion Claiming my life – all Yours for the taking. I don’t need to contain You, Only receive You. Ever feel like a receiver? Running down the field Arms all extended Grasping for meaning, for purpose To catch Him. Waving your arms to flag His attention, Signaling madly.

BRIDGET STEC, ILLUSTRATOR

The ball He releases; To you it comes soaring. You think just a moment, All calling into question: What if I drop this? Or if I outrun it? Might it soar over? I’ll miss the completion… Not only destroying My stats of reception, But His passer rating. As safely it drops Into arms only reaching, You must keep on running No bauble, no slacking.

If that’s what it is to receive, I see the exhilaration, determination, and planning But I miss all the safety of Your gentle love. God, help me to see. My love’s not a bargain. My love’s not a gamble. Like a waterfall gushing, Like arms always open, It’s all invitation. I’m here just waiting. Stand under My kindness, And let My grace soak you.

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SACRE D PL ACES Worship of the Eucharistic Jesus and Marian devotion merge in astonishing beauty in Marytown’s perpetual adoration chapel.

Immaculata CITY OF THE

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St. Maximilian Kolbe “Marytown” Shrine.

FEELS LI K E HOME Simply pull into the parking lot and it becomes instantly clear why the shrine is called Marytown. To the right is a meditation area dedicated to Our Lady of Fatima. To the left is a shady Rosary Walk with landscaped prayer areas. If you love Mary and marvel at her many approved appearances — as St. Maximilian surely did — you know you have arrived at a spiritual home away from home. Shrines to St. Francis, St. Anthony and St. Pio greet visitors to the walk, and naturally so — Marytown is administered by the Conventual Franciscan Friars of the St. Bonaventure Province. (St. Maximilian was a Conventual Franciscan.) Between the two Marian shrines is the adoration chapel. This red-brick building with its paired porch columns and pillars reflects the Colonial Revival architectural style of nearby Mundelein Seminary. But just wait until you walk through the chapel doors.

FRANCISCAN HOSPITALITY AND GLORIOUS SACRED ART AWAIT PILGRIMS TO THE SHRINE OF ST. MAXIMILIAN KOLBE IT’S TUCKED AWAY ON A PLEASANT STRETCH OF TWO-LANE ROAD BETWEEN THE COMMUNITIES OF LIBERTYVILLE AND MUNDELEIN, IN SEMI-RURAL LAKE COUNTY, ILL., JUST SOUTH OF THE WISCONSIN BORDER. THIS HIDDEN GEM AND HOLY PLACE — THE NATIONAL SHRINE OF ST. MAXIMILIAN KOLBE — IS A WORTHY DESTINATION FOR THE DETROIT-AREA PILGRIM.

Known informally as “Marytown,” the shrine is actually a harmony of ministries: 24-hour eucharistic adoration chapel, shrine to the Polish “Saint of Auschwitz,” Franciscan friary, Kolbe/Holocaust interpretive center, Catholic gift shop and 30-room retreat house. With a full schedule of liturgies and devotions and layers of historic, artistic and religious significance, be prepared, pilgrim, for an extraordinary experience.

DANIEL GALLIO, WRITER • PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE SHRINE OF ST. MAXIMILIAN KOLBE

A RTI S TI C TREA S U RES “My first thought upon entering the chapel was the solemn magnificence of its setting,” recalls William Barnes, parishioner of the National Shrine of the Little Flower in Royal Oak. Barnes was part of a recent pilgrimage to the historic churches of Chicago, which included Marytown, led by Prayer Pilgrimages founder Michael Semaan of Troy. The setting is basilica-style; specifically, Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament chapel mirrors the Basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls in Rome. The Catholic Church has always believed that sacred art and architecture help us to better comprehend the invisible God. Marytown’s artistic treasures do exactly that, surrounding the pilgrim in visual brilliance: intricate mosaics of the Blessed Virgin, imported from Austria; an altar fashioned from nine types of marble; a tabernacle plated with gold melted from precious gifts; and stained-glass windows so imbued with spiritual symbolism that their descriptions fill pages of a walking tour booklet. The most extraordinary treasure is the spectacular sunburst eucharistic monstrance. At 5 feet, 2 inches tall, and formed entirely from sacrificial gifts of jewelry, it sits high upon an altar of exposition under a canopy of gold-leafed teakwood. The monstrance irresistibly draws the pilgrim’s gaze and testifies to Christ truly present in the Eucharist. So do the 28 marble columns that march along the nave from entrance to sanctuary. “The marble colonnade suggests to me Our Lord’s words, ‘Straight the gate and narrow the way that leads to salvation,’” Barnes says, referring to Matthew 7:14. “When I noticed that the Most Blessed Sacrament was exposed, I smiled with reverential fear, thinking, ‘This is what brings the cold marble to life.’ Among all of the adoration chapels I have visited, this one is the grandest of all.”

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C I T Y O F M A RY Worship of the eucharistic Jesus has been going on day and night, initially by Benedictine nuns, since Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament chapel opened in 1932. Cardinal George Mundelein commissioned the chapel to commemorate the Archdiocese of Chicago’s International Eucharist Congress of 1926. But how did a Benedictine devotional site become a Franciscan shrine? Brother Charles Madden, OFM Conv is Marytown’s resident historian. With the opening of Father Maximilian’s cause for sainthood in 1948, Brother Madden explains, the province permitted the founding of a U.S. “city of the Immaculata,” or Marytown, ultimately in Kenosha, Wis. It was patterned after Father Kolbe’s evangelization center in Poland. There, the patron saint of journalists used modern communication methods to spread Marian consecration to renew the culture. When the Benedictines closed their shrine in 1978, the Marytown friars purchased the Libertyville complex, allowing them to expand their publishing outreach, even installing printing presses in the basement. “There are two of the original generation of friars still with us today,” Brother Madden says. The friars have faithfully maintained the tradition of adoration while making the chapel their own. Pilgrims can stroll the side aisles and admire monumental mosaics of Franciscan saints, with additional mosaics depicting the life of St. Maximilian. Most dramatic is the mosaic portraying St. Maximilian perishing in the starvation bunker of Auschwitz, then rising from the crematorium flames into the arms of Mary. Visitors venerate first-class relics of this “martyr of charity” (Pope St. John Paul II) displayed beneath the mosaic. “One feels a calmness enclosing him in this stately and elegant place,” Barnes says. “One emerges from Marytown’s chapel humbled and grateful.” ‘ G O LD EN T H R EA D’ Humility and gratitude describe my own feelings about my time at the national shrine. During the 1990s and early 2000s, I was employed by the Marytown Franciscans, helping them promote the shrine and further their publishing ministry. Often I would shake my head in wonderment that I was permitted to make my living contributing to their work and in such a profound setting. But marble and mosaics are one thing; the “living stones” (1 Pt 2:5) — the people I worked with — are another. Looking back, the word “faithfulness” keeps emerging.

St. Maximilian’s relics are found in the main chapel and basement Holocaust exhibit.

WHY NOT MA K E A V I SIT? National Shrine of St. Maximilian Kolbe/Marytown 1600 W. Park Ave. Libertyville, IL 60048 847-367-7800 mail@kolbeshrine.org kolbeshrine.com

Day after day, three times a day, the friars file into choir stalls in quiet dignity to pray the Divine Office. They celebrate twice-daily public Mass for visitors and carry out their wide-ranging ministries for the good of all people. With friendly Franciscan hospitality, they take time to mingle with worshippers after noon Mass and devotions. Young people love to tag along with the friars like they are favorite uncles. The foremost example of faithfulness: For 71 years, never has a day gone by when a Marytown Franciscan has not been adoring Christ in the Blessed Sacrament. Most of the friars from my time at the national shrine have passed. The printing presses are long gone. But shrine Rector Father Benedict La Volpe, OFM Conv speaks of a “golden thread” — love for the Immaculata — that binds together all Franciscans extending back to St. Francis. The faces of the faithful Franciscans have and will continue to change at Marytown. The thread that binds them in common cause will last until the end of ages. Consider a pilgrimage to the national shrine to St. Maximilian Kolbe. Join with the faithful friars of Marytown to worship Jesus, honor his mother and grow in faith and holiness.

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OUR HISTORY Mass Mob at St. Albertus in Detroit.

It began on

CANFIELD STREET

DETROIT’S POLISH COMMUNITY HAS CHANGED OVER THE DECADES, BUT ITS LEGACY AND TRADITIONS ENRICH THE ARCHDIOCESE TO THIS DAY

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Orleans. Since many came from areas under Prussian control, the sermons delivered in German would have no doubt sounded familiar. But soon, these new Polish Americans would put down their own Catholic roots — roots that have left lasting traditions and a legacy that enriches the Archdiocese of Detroit to this day.

TO THE CONTEMPORARY OBSERVER, THE NEIGHBORHOOD MIGHT SEEM A BIT PECULIAR. HUGE CHURCHES WITH TOWERING SPIRES STAND AMONG HOLLOWED-OUT URBAN BLOCKS, MANY WITH ONLY ONE OR TWO OCCUPIED HOMES. BELOW-GRADE EXPRESSWAYS PUNCTUATE THE LANDSCAPE, WHILE ONLY SMALL AMOUNTS OF STREET TRAFFIC BREAK THE SILENCE. Yet scarcely more than a century ago, this enclave on Detroit’s east side looked and sounded very different. The relatively small area bordered by Canfield Street on the south, Hastings on the west, Medbury on the north and McDougall on the east was the neighborhood where the first immigrants from Poland arrived in Detroit beginning in the 1850s, fleeing political oppression in their homeland. The local economy made Detroit a major destination. Industries such as stove manufacturing and railroad car building were in need of workers, jobs that required only a basic level of skills and education. With no house of worship of their own at first, these early arrivals worshiped at St. Joseph, the German congregation then located on Gratiot between Riopelle and

ESTABLISHING A SPIRITUAL HOME In 1872, the first Polish parish was organized under the guidance of Father Simon Wieczorek. The founders intended to name the church after St. Wojciech, venerated as a patron saint of the Czech and Polish peoples. Uncertain as to the proper English equivalent, the new parish was named after St. Adalbert of Prague — an erroneous Latin equivalent, later anglicized to St. Albertus. The first church, a frame structure, was built at St. Aubin and East Canfield in 1872. St. Albertus continued to grow, and in 1882 a new pastor, Father Dominic Kolasinski from Krakow, was appointed pastor. But controversy surrounded his fundraising methods, and eventually the parish was suspended and Father Kolasinski was exiled to North Dakota. In 1888, with a change of bishops in Detroit, Kolasinski returned to the city and established Sweetest Heart of Mary Parish outside the jurisdiction of the diocese. There’s reason to believe that the 1889 establishment of nearby St. Josephat was intended to draw members from Kolasinski’s church. But in 1894, after difficult negotiations, the parties eventually made peace. Today, Sweetest Heart of Mary’s place in the archdiocese is the legacy of that reconciliation. One of the most extraordinary features contained within the church is the stained-glass window occupying the south transept. Measuring 60 feet high by 30 feet wide, the window depicts the Holy Family. Joseph is

PAUL VACHON, WRITER • JONATHAN FRANCIS, NAOMI VRAZO, PHOTOGRAPHERS

shown looking up from his carpentry work while Mary is harvesting lambswool to be woven into fabric. Jesus, who appears to be about 10 years old, is shown holding a cross, a sign of his ultimate destiny. By 1897, growth in the Polish community merited an additional parish. Residents in the area of St. Aubin and Medbury grew weary of the long walks to either St. Josephat or Sweetest Heart of Mary, so they petitioned the bishop for a new parish. St. Stanislaus opened in July 1898 in a former Lutheran church. Construction began on a permanent home, a huge Baroque structure, in 1911. The congregation grew considerably over the decades and eventually became the largest Polish Catholic parish in Michigan, with both grade and high schools. In 1907, St. Hyacinth was established. The first church, on the block of Frederick between McDougall and Elmwood, was eventually converted to the Felician convent when the church’s replacement and the school building were completed in late 1908. But the post-war years proved problematic for urban parishes. St. Stanislaus was one of the first to see members migrate to the suburbs. Construction of Interstate 94 isolated a number of families, leading to declines in school enrollment. In 1989, the diocese elected to close St. Stanislaus in lieu of clustering it with nearby parishes. VIBRANT CULTURAL TRADITIONS Today, despite a century of socioeconomic changes, church closures and cultural shifts, Detroit’s Polish Catholic community is very much alive and well. St. Hyacinth, for example, still has a largely Polish membership, a fact reflected in the Sunday liturgy. Though the Masses are conducted predominantly in English, the celebrant switches to Polish for

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certain prayers. The parish also continues cherished holiday traditions, including the blessing of the baskets at Easter and the singing of Polish carols at Christmastime. Elaborate festivals are a longstanding Polish tradition. For more than 113 years, St. Hyacinth has been the home of the annual Banana Festival, held in early October. The event is a parish fundraiser featuring church tours, game booths, food vendors, a raffle and an array of banana cream pies. The banana theme was chosen decades ago as part of an arrangement with neighboring parishes. As Darlene Zabrzenski, parish administrator, explains, “Our Lady Help of Christians celebrated its Apple Festival, while parishioners at St. Florian in Hamtramck continue to observe their annual Strawberry Festival.” St. Hyacinth also holds its Wigilia observance, a Christmas Eve celebration consisting of a festive meal (with the table having an extra place setting for an unexpected guest) and the breaking and sharing of the oplatek, a wafer of unleavened bread representing the daily bread of the Eucharist. Father Greg Tokarski, current pastor of Mother of Divine Mercy Parish (the consolidation of Sweetest Heart of Mary and St. Josephat), explains how spirituality in the Polish tradition exists through the prism of a strong Marian devotion. “We follow Jesus though the eyes of Mary,” he says. “This is why in Polish churches you’ll see an abundance of statues, paintings and icons of the Blessed Virgin, especially Our Lady of Czestochowa (the Black Madonna). This level of Marian devotion is what distinguishes Polish Catholics from Irish Catholics, for example. This devotion is also expressed during Lent through the Stations of the Cross.” Father Tokarski says that although his parish no longer offers Polish liturgy, Polish traditions are still

St. Hyacinth in Detroit.

evident. At Midnight Mass each Christmas, Polish hymns are sung, and Easter includes the blessing of the baskets, as at St. Hyacinth. And Mother of Divine Mercy celebrates its Pierogi Festival each year during the second weekend of August. “It’s a huge annual event for the city and the diocese, attracting some 15,000 people,” says Father Tokarski. The festive three-day event includes special Masses at both Sweetest Heart of Mary and St. Josephat, some of which are celebrated by the archbishop, plus Polish-themed entertainment, food tents offering Polish delicacies and a prize raffle. ‘RELEVANT IN THE HEARTS OF ALL CHRISTIANS’ Today, Detroit’s Polish community is much more geographically diverse than it was 100 years ago, but its profound legacy remains, ensconced in brick and mortar. Those churches still active as houses of worship offer great spiritual and cultural enrichment for presentday worshippers, many of whom are non-Polish. As Father Tokarski points out, the saints of Polish origin honored in his church — including Pope St. John Paul II — offer spiritual sustenance to all. “The lives of these Polish saints are relevant in the hearts of all Christians.”

St. Albertus today ALTHOUGH ST. ALBERTUS CLOSED AS A PARISH IN 1990 DUE TO DECLINING ATTENDANCE, THE SITE’S IMPORTANCE IS NOT LOST ON THE GREATER POLISH COMMUNITY. TODAY, THE POLISH AMERICAN HISTORIC SITE ASSOCIATION (PAHSA), A NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION, SOLICITS DONATIONS FOR MAINTENANCE AND REPAIRS TO THE CHURCH BUILDING, IN ADDITION TO HOSTING A SERIES OF EVENTS INCLUDING PERIODIC MASSES APPROVED BY THE ARCHBISHOP, CELEBRATIONS OF POLISH MUSIC AND A CHRISTMAS PARTY. TOURS OF ST. ALBERTUS ARE AVAILABLE DURING AND AFTER MANY OF THESE EVENTS. IN ADDITION, LECTURES AND SPECIAL TOURS ARE OFFERED OCCASIONALLY. FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT STALBERTUSDETROIT.ORG.

PAUL VACHON is a local author, freelance writer and lifelong Detroiter. His newest book, Detroit: An Illustrated Timeline, was published earlier this year by Reedy Press.

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CONVERSATIONS WITH GOD

ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI Ablaze for the body and blood

One of the world’s most popular and often misunderstood saints, Francis formed his spirituality around the humility of God as expressed in the Eucharist — and he lit a fire that has burned in his followers’ hearts for 800 years. 42

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From certain angles, ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI’S LIFE IS A STUDY IN CONTRASTS. HE HAS BEEN CLOSELY SCRUTINIZED FOR CENTURIES, YET HE’S A HARD ONE TO CATEGORIZE. BORN INTO GREAT WEALTH, THE YOUNG GIOVANNI DI PIETRO DI BERNARDONE STRIPPED HIMSELF, LITERALLY, OF ALL MATERIAL TRAPPINGS TO EMBRACE “LADY POVERTY.” HE LONGED FOR OBSCURITY — SO MUCH SO THAT HE FLED TO CAVES FOR SOLITUDE — YET HIS VERY LIFE STARTED A WORLDWIDE MOVEMENT. HE IS OFTEN THOUGHT OF AS THE “BIRDBATH SAINT,” A TREE-HUGGING LOVER OF ALL CREATURES

CHRISTOPHER HEFFRON is the editorial director at Franciscan Media in Cincinnati, Ohio.

GREAT AND SMALL, YET HE WAS A DEEPLY INSTITUTIONAL CATHOLIC WHO LIVED A LIFE COMMITTED TO THE TEACHINGS OF THE CHURCH.

Relegating the poor man of Assisi to a Catholic garden gnome — or any single descriptor — is a disservice to his legacy. Though care for creation was so entwined into Francis’ spirituality that he was declared the patron saint of ecology in 1982 by Pope St. John Paul II, it was the building blocks of the faith that both grounded and motivated Francis. The Eucharist was the foundation on which his faith life was built. In his “Letter to All Clerics,” in fact, Francis wrote that, “In this world there is nothing of the Most High himself that we can possess and contemplate with our eyes, except his body and blood.” For Francis, the Eucharist was both his compass and his journey’s end. In Francis — as evidenced by both his lifestyle and his collected writings — every Catholic can find an inspiration to more prayerfully and more joyfully encounter Christ in the Eucharist. “All those who refuse to do penance and receive the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ are blind, because they cannot see the true light, our Lord Jesus Christ.” -L E TTE R TO AL L THE FAI THF U L

Humility is the heart of Franciscan spirituality. Francis showed, by word and by action, that only a humble and penitent spirit could be readied for gifts as important as the body and blood of Christ. Francis’ message here may seem harsh, especially from a saint so fundamentally tied to simplicity and peace, but the directness of his message only illustrates his primal need for union with the divine. R EFLEC T A N D PR AY : Do you routinely make use of the gifts provided by the sacrament of reconciliation to prepare yourself to receive holy Communion? If not, what is holding you back from going?

CHRISTOPHER HEFFRON, WRITER • DIEGO DIAZ, ILLUSTRATOR

“In his love, God gives himself into our hands; we touch him and receive him daily into our mouths.” - L E T T E R TO A LL C L E R IC S

Francis takes a noticeably softer tone in this letter to clerics, but the heartbeat of his message is no less serious: When we receive the Eucharist — either by hand or by mouth — we are taking in essential food for the journey. The Eucharist, to Francis, offered the promise of everlasting life and guided him into a realm of greater compassion for his fellow man. REFLECT A ND P RAY : How do you feel when you receive the Eucharist? Has the experience become mundane — or even infrequent? Recall a time when receiving Communion felt especially meaningful for you. “We should visit churches often and show great reverence for the clergy, not just for them personally, for they may be sinners, but because of their high office, for it is they who administer the most holy body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ.” - L E T T E R TO A LL T H E FA IT H FUL

It might be difficult for 21st century Catholics to mirror so pure a temperament toward the clergy as Francis did in his day. But look closer. He is acknowledging the importance of their station while recognizing clergy as sinners — just as we are. Francis saw all of life as threads in God’s vast tapestry, truly one unified body of Christ. And we cannot receive the Eucharist without dedicated clergy who serve as conduits for such a moment of grace. REFLECT A ND P RAY : How would you describe your relationship with the clergy in your parish? What can you do to get to know them and support them?

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IN HIS LOVE, GOD GIVES HIMSELF INTO OUR HANDS; WE TOUCH HIM AND RECEIVE HIM DAILY INTO OUR MOUTHS.” -LETTER TO ALL CLERICS

St. Francis of Assisi “O sublime humility! O humble sublimity! That the Lord of the whole universe, God and the Son of God, should humble himself like this and hide under the form of a little bread, for our salvation.” -LE TTE R TO THE GE NE RAL C HAP TE R

The life of Francis was plagued by trial, illness and great physical pain. One adjective seldom associated with the saint is joyful — but joy was a hallmark of his life and his life’s work. (Read his Canticle of the Creatures for further proof.) What makes his message so remarkable is, first, his mastery of poetic language. But it is the joy and vigor behind his words that really leave a mark. When we partake in the Eucharist, it is a solemn moment but also one of celebration. RE F L E C T A ND PR AY : What is your natural disposition to receiving the Eucharist? Is it one of celebration, solemnity, or both? Francis “burned with a love that came from his whole being for the sacrament of the Lord’s body.” -THOMAS OF CEL ANO, AN EARLY FRIAR AND AUTHOR OF THREE HAGIOGRAPHIES OF FRANCIS

Francis sought to spread that fire to his brothers, to the lepers he embraced outside the walled city of Assisi, indeed to all those who longed for a closer relationship with God. It was the summit of his faith, the holiest of meals — and he invited everybody to the table. RE F L E C T A ND PR AY : When you think of the Eucharist as a meal, what images come to mind? If Jesus came to your home and joined you for a meal, how would you feel having him at your table? Quotes taken from Peace and Good: Through the Year with Francis of Assisi by Pat McCloskey, OFM. Used with permission from Franciscan Media.)

St. Francis of Assisi is an Italian saint who shocked the people of his time by taking the Gospel literally. Born into a wealthy family in 1181 or 1182, Francis lived a lavish, pleasure-filled life until 1202, when he joined a military expedition against Perugia and became a prisoner of war. After a year of captivity and a serious illness, Francis began to see the world differently — culminating in a vision of Christ that Francis experienced in a neglected chapel in San Damiano. From the cross in the chapel, Christ told Francis to “go out and build up my house.” This began Francis’ time living in poverty, renouncing his father’s money and working literally to rebuild the church in San Damiano, stone by stone. Later on, St. Francis realized Christ was asking him to rebuild the greater Church, not just a physical reconstruction. He started preaching penance and peace to the poor people of the countryside, drawing others to him, and in April 1210, the Franciscan Order officially was founded. Francis was devoted to spreading the teachings of the Church, and before his death at age 44, he received the stigmata in his hands, feet and side. Today, Francis is widely known as the patron saint of animals and ecology, as well as for writing the Canticle of the Creatures and creating the first known Nativity scene. Around the world, Francis’ work is continued by 16,000 members of the Order of Friars Minor, in addition to Conventual Franciscans, Capuchins, Poor Clares, secular Franciscans and others moved and inspired by this humble saint.

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PR AYER 101

THROUGH THE EUCHARISTIC PRAYERS AT MASS, WE OFFER OURSELVES IN SACRIFICE AS PART OF THE BODY OF CHRIST

Msgr. Gary Smetanka, pastor at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Grosse Point Woods and visiting priest from Ghana.

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When we pray, many of us close our eyes and bow our heads, perhaps to block out any distractions that might prevent us from lifting up our minds and hearts fully to our Father. Some might even look up or raise their hands when they pray — literally lifting aspects of their physical bodies toward God. This tendency to raise up — to lift our minds and bodies — during prayer is natural and logical, especially at the Mass, when we also raise our awareness of being in the presence of the divine. The liturgy is that singular time and place when and where God’s people come together to be lifted up by prayer and united in communion. In Scripture, we are told “to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God.” (Rom 12:1) And this happens in a totally unique way at the holy Eucharist. At Mass, the body and blood of Christ are lifted up and offered to the Father. You are a member of the body of Christ, so you are part of what is lifted up and offered at each and every Mass! People who do not attend Mass often say, “I can pray on my own.” Though this is certainly true, private prayer never takes the place of the worshipping community at prayer in the sacred liturgy. At Mass, you are being united to the sacrifice of Jesus; you are being strengthened in the bond of communion with the entire body of Christ. Simply put, it’s just not the same when you’re not there. Remember that, by virtue of his ordination, the priest offers the eucharistic prayer on behalf of the people of God. The priest addresses the words of the eucharistic prayer to the Father, as he stands in the person of Christ, the Son (in persona Christi). How do we know that we, too, are being lifted up as part of the sacrifice of the Mass when the priest offers to the Father the body and blood of Christ? Listen closely to these portions of the eucharistic prayers the next time you are at Mass and allow yourself to be offered up along with them. Make these words part of your own prayer as you prepare yourself for Mass. For it is Jesus himself who is waiting to lift you up to the Lord, to raise your mind and heart to the Father and to unite your gift of self with his own perfect sacrifice.

FATHER BRIAN MELDRUM, WRITER • VALAURIAN WALLER, PHOTOGRAPHER

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER I (THE ROMAN CANON) “... that all of us, who through this participation at the altar receive the most holy body and blood of your Son, may be filled with every grace and heavenly blessing.” In the Old Testament, the sacrifices offered at the temple were said to be completed when the family who provided the sacrifice received a portion of it back to celebrate a communal meal. The Eucharist is the same for us. We offer ourselves along with the bread and wine at Mass, but then we receive back something better than what we offered in the first place: the true body and blood of Christ. Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, grant me the grace and heavenly blessing to become what I receive at Mass.

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER II “Humbly we pray that, partaking of the body and blood of Christ, we may be gathered into one by the Holy Spirit.” When the Eucharist is divided and distributed, it actually has the effect of uniting and gathering us! This is the power of the Holy Spirit at work in the Church to bring us into communion with one another. If the Church is the body of Christ, then the Holy Spirit is the soul of the body. Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, fill me with your Spirit as I unite myself to you and my brothers and sisters at Mass.

FATHER BRIAN MELDRUM was ordained a priest for the Archdiocese of Detroit in 2015 and served as the associate pastor at Our Lady of the Lakes Parish in Waterford. Before attending Sacred Heart Major Seminary, he was a music minister and theater director and member of St. Thecla Parish in Clinton Township. He is currently studying sacred Scripture at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.

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EUCHARISTIC PRAYER III “May he make of us an eternal offering to you, so that we may obtain an inheritance with your elect.” Jesus offered himself perfectly, once for all, to the Eternal Father on the cross. The Mass makes this perfect offering present and invites us to make an offering of ourselves the only way we can: with and through Jesus himself. We can do this because, as the Letter to the Hebrews says, Jesus “... is always able to save those who approach God through him, since he lives forever to make intercession for them.” (7:25) Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, help me to make a perfect offering of myself along with you at Mass.

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER IV “... grant in your loving kindness to all who partake of this one Bread and one Chalice that, gathered into one body by the Holy Spirit, they may truly become a living sacrifice in Christ to the praise of your glory.” A sacrifice is the handing over of something precious to another. It is no sacrifice to give up something we do not need or do not want, or that means nothing to us. It is an entirely different thing to give up something precious and valuable. St. Paul told the Romans to “offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, your spiritual worship.” (Rom 12:1) We actually become part of the worship at Mass when we offer the precious gift of ourselves to the Father in union with the precious body and blood of Christ. Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, I want to place myself on the altar along with you, so that through you and with you, I might be pleasing to the Father.

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER FOR RECONCILIATION I “Look kindly, most compassionate Father, on those you unite to yourself by the sacrifice of your Son.” The sacrifice of Jesus unites and reconciles us to the Father. At the cross, death guarantees life, defeat turns to victory and wounds become the means to heal. Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, unite my wounded human heart to your wounded sacred heart and teach me how to make a gift of my life to the Father.

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER FOR RECONCILIATION II “Holy Father, we humbly beseech you to accept us also, together with your Son, and in this saving banquet graciously to endow us with his very Spirit.” “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been purchased at a price. Therefore, glorify God in your body.” (1 Cor 6:19-20) Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, nourish me with your body and blood and strengthen me by the grace of your Spirit to do the Father’s will.

EUCHARISTIC PRAYERS FOR VARIOUS NEEDS AND OCCASIONS “Look with favor on the oblation of your Church, in which we show forth the paschal sacrifice of Christ that has been handed on to us, and grant that, by the power of the Spirit of your love, we may be counted now and until the day of eternity among the members of your Son, in whose body and blood we have communion.” On Trinity Sunday, we pray: “The Father is Love, the Son is grace, the Holy Spirit is their bond of fellowship; O blessed Trinity.” The grace of this divine love is given to each of us in baptism and strengthened and renewed each time we receive the sacraments, especially the Eucharist. Lord Jesus, truly present in the Eucharist, strengthen the bond of communion between all the members of the Church and keep us bound together by the spirit of your love, until the day when you call us to the Father’s house. Amen.

YOU ARE A MEMBER OF THE BODY OF CHRIST, SO YOU ARE PART OF WHAT IS LIFTED UP AND OFFERED AT EACH AND EVERY MASS!” UN LE A SH T H E G O SP E L . O R G |

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P RAYING WITH T HE C H UR CH FATHER S

LET US HASTEN TO THE ALTAR OF CHRIST

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DIEGO DIAZ, ILLUSTRATOR


ST. AMBROSE ( 3 3 9 -3 9 7 ) , ONE OF THE GRE AT DOCTORS OF THE WE S TE RN C HU RC H, BELIE VE D THAT ON E OF HI S P RI M ARY TAS K S A S BISHOP WAS TO INS TRU C T CATE C HU M E NS AN D NEWLY BAPTI Z E D C HRI S TI ANS I N THE FAITH — AND O NE OF THE S E WAS S T. AUGUSTIN E , WHO WAS B AP TI Z E D BY S T. A MBROSE IN 3 8 7 . IN T HI S S E L E C TI ON, D RAWN FROM T W O HOMILIE S AM B ROS E GAVE TO NEWLY BAPTIZED C HRI S TI ANS , AM B ROS E CALLS THE M TO “HAS TE N TO THE ALTAR OF C HRIST” BE CAUSE C HRI S T AWAI TS THE M THE RE IN HIS BODY AND B LOOD .

St. Ambrose always teaches the truths of our faith from the Old Testament, showing how the old is fulfilled in the new with the coming of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit. So here he refers to Exodus, the Psalms, the Song of Songs and the prophets in order to show that Christ is truly present when we partake of him in the Eucharist. St. Ambrose speaks about a change of nature: The elements of bread and wine become the very body and blood of Christ. We should not be surprised at this, he says. We see miracles in the Old Testament in which the nature of things is changed. Why should we doubt that, with the power of Christ’s own words, the bread and wine become Christ’s very body and blood? And so, St. Ambrose calls the faithful to “hasten” to this altar to receive so great a gift. Why partake of the body and blood of Christ? Because from them we receive real spiritual life, our hearts our filled with joy and we receive strength for the journey. COM M E N TARY BY D R . DA N I EL K EAT I NG Dr. Daniel Keating is an author and professor of theology at Sacred Heart Major Seminary.

St. Ambrose, On the Mysteries, 5-6.1 Fresh from the waters and resplendent in these garments, God’s holy people hasten to the altar of Christ, saying, “I will go in to the altar of God, to God who gives joy to my youth.” (Ps 43:4) They have sloughed off the old skin of error, “their youth renewed like the eagle’s,” (Ps 103:5) and they make haste to approach that heavenly banquet. They come and, seeing the sacred altar prepared, cry out: “You have prepared a table in my sight.” (Ps 23:5) It is wonderful that God rained manna on our fathers and they were fed with daily food from heaven. And so it is written: “Man ate the bread of angels.” (Ps 78:25) Yet those who ate that bread all died in the desert. But the food that you receive, that “living bread which came down from heaven,” (Jn 6:51) supplies the very substance of eternal life, and whoever will eat it will never die, for it is the body of Christ. Consider now, which is the more excellent: the bread of angels or the flesh of Christ, which is indeed the body that gives life. The first was manna from heaven; the second is above the heavens. One was of heaven, the other is of the Lord of the heavens; one subject to corruption if it was kept till the morrow, the other free from corruption, for if anyone tastes of it with reverence, he will be incapable of corruption. For our fathers, water flowed from the rock; for you, blood flows from Christ. Water satisfied their thirst for a time; blood cleanses you forever. If the blessing of a human being had power even to change nature, what do we say of God’s action in the consecration itself, in which the very words of the Lord and Savior are effective? If the words of Elijah had power even to bring down fire from

heaven, will not the words of Christ have power to change the nature of the elements? You have read that in the creation of the whole world “he spoke and they came to be; he commanded and they were created.” (Ps 33:9) If Christ could by speaking create out of nothing what did not yet exist, can we say that his words are unable to change existing things into something they previously were not? It is no lesser feat to create new natures for things than to change their existing natures. The Lord Jesus himself declares: “This is my body.” (Mt 26:26) Before the blessing contained in these words, a different thing is named; after the consecration, a body is indicated. He himself speaks of his blood. Before the consecration, something else is spoken of; after the consecration, blood is designated. And you say, “Amen,” that is: “It is true.” What the mouth utters, let the mind within acknowledge; what the word says, let the heart ratify. So the Church, in response to grace so great, exhorts her children, exhorts her neighbors, to hasten to these mysteries: “Neighbors,” she says, “come and eat; brethren, drink and be filled.” (Song 5:1) In another passage, the Holy Spirit has made clear for you what you are to eat, what you are to drink. “Taste,” the prophet says, “and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who puts his trust in him.” (Ps 34:9) Christ is in that sacrament, for it is the body of Christ. Finally, it is this food that gives strength to our hearts, this drink which “gives joy to the heart of man,” (Ps 104:15) as the prophet has written. 1

 ranslation from the Office of Readings, T Ordinary Time, week Fifteen, Friday and Saturday.

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FAMILY CHALLENGE

BRINGING THE

CELEBRATION HOME A week’s worth of activities to carry the beauty of the Mass into our daily lives and our domestic churches Let’s face it: Going to Mass with children is a gamble. As much as every parent wants to believe they have heavenly and angelic offspring, any little human has the ability to swing between both ends of the behavioral spectrum. Often this leaves us anxiously waiting on the edge of our pew, feeling like we are playing Catholic roulette. My wife, Stef, and I have a toddler who is generally mild-mannered. Our 2-year-old daughter, Evelyn — her name meaning “life” and “light” — certainly brings both words to reality in ways good and, sometimes, not so good when we are at Mass. Regardless of her behavior, we know the Mass is at the center of our Christian life. It is where we meet Jesus in the Gospel and encounter his love and mercy. We need this encounter to sustain our living relationship with God! Both Stef and I have served as Catholic missionaries, but we did not fully embrace our faith until the later years of college. We understand the importance of a relationship with Jesus Christ and the beauty that is the Catholic Mass, but becoming parents has taught us that no matter

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how much you know about evangelization or catechesis, raising little ones in the faith is a whole new ballgame. There is a lot of pressure on a Christian parent to raise faithful, spirit-led children. We must ask many questions and make daily decisions to ensure our families have a true space in the domestic church to encounter the person of Jesus Christ and follow him as saints into eternal life. Do we send our kids to Catholic school? Should we enroll in CCD or Catechesis of the Good Shepherd? Do our kids need to attend every youth conference or service activity available to them? No matter the answers to these questions, there is always one constant on which we ought to focus every week: the Mass. Pope emeritus Benedict XVI refers to the eucharistic celebration as “the greatest and highest act of prayer.” So, we ought to have a yearning in our heart to receive Jesus every day and not only bring our family to Mass, but bring the Mass home to our family. Our desire is not always a burning one, but if we are faithful and find small ways to incorporate the celebration of Christ’s sacrifice throughout our daily lives, our desire for the Mass will slowly and steadily grow, and our family will begin to make connections between the Mass and our life at home. The following daily activities are designed to help you partake in some of the most beautiful elements of the Mass and familiarize your family with what it looks like to celebrate the death and resurrection of Christ wherever you go.

LEVI RASH is a regional director with FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) and has served as a missionary for almost nine years. Originally from Missouri, Levi has traveled all over the country serving college students and has been to multiple countries on mission. He loves exploring new places and people and currently resides in Lincoln, Neb., with his wife and two daughters.

LEVI RASH, WRITER • MONICA BUSCHER, PHOTOGRAPHER


MONDAY PENITENTIAL ACT (KYRIE) At the beginning of every Mass, we prepare our hearts to receive Christ by calling to mind the ways we have fallen short in loving God and then asking for his mercy. It is like a fresh start for us to enter more fully into the mystery of God’s love. DO TOGETHER: At the beginning of the week, have your family choose a space in the house to clean or tidy up. Set a timer, and when it goes off, gather everyone together and bless one another with holy water, making a commitment to “come clean” into a new week.

TUESDAY GLORY TO GOD (GLORIA) Once we position our hearts to be more aligned with Christ through the penitential act, we give adoration and praise to God by singing the Gloria. This prayer draws us back to the joyous moment Christ was born and the angels sang in jubilation. DO TOGETHER: Read aloud Luke 2:10-14 and then draw angels to hang in your children’s bedrooms or on the refrigerator.

WEDNESDAY GOSPEL The Liturgy of the Word is the first main part of the Mass. This is when we hear readings from both the Old and New Testaments, as well as the Psalms. The Gospel is taken from one of four writers: Matthew, Mark, Luke or John. DO TOGETHER: In preparation for Sunday Mass, take turns reading the upcoming Gospel passage. Lead your family in a short discussion about what is happening in the story and what lessons we might be able to learn.

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THURSDAY UNIVERSAL PRAYER (PRAYERS OF THE FAITHFUL) After the readings and the homily given by the priest or deacon, we pray for the needs of the church and the world. DO TOGETHER: Create a prayer journal in which your family can write down their own special intentions each night. You can come back to this as often as you want to build the habit of intercessory prayer as a family.

FRIDAY PREPARATION OF THE ALTAR The Liturgy of the Eucharist is the second main part of the Mass. This begins with the presentation of the gifts and the preparation of the altar. DO TOGETHER: Create a small altar or prayer space in your home. This can be a simple table adorned with a crucifix, a Bible and other holy images. You might even look for a chalice or other sacred objects we see at Mass so you can add to your altar over time. Allow this space to become a focal point of your family prayer time. We like to include special images that correspond with certain holy days or saint feast days. This is a clear visual representation of the Mass, as the home altar can look very similar to the altar we see in the church.

SUNDAY COMMUNION Although not everyone in your family might be of age to receive the Eucharist, we can enter into the mystery together by reflecting on the story of the Last Supper.

SATURDAY THE LORD’S PRAYER

DO TOGETHER: Make it a point to gather your whole family for a meal this day and begin by reading aloud Matthew 26:26-28. This simple effort can help your family understand the importance and power of the Eucharist not only at Mass, but in your own home.

This is perhaps the most familiar element of the Mass because The Lord’s Prayer, or the “Our Father,” is a commonly recited prayer. DO TOGETHER: Together, read Matthew 6:9-13. Write the prayer on cardstock and then create a simple puzzle by cutting the paper with scissors. Work together to complete the puzzle, then say the prayer aloud.

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GOING DEEPER

ALONE

GOD

How do we fill the silence when we sit with the Father in eucharistic adoration? Try these ideas for meditation and journaling.

Sitting in the presence of God at eucharistic adoration is an awesome experience — but one that can feel as daunting as it is special. We’re used to distractions. We struggle with silence. The inherent intimacy of adoration can feel uncomfortable in this day of endless social connectedness. We live our lives more publicly than ever, but adoration calls us to a private, one-on-one experience — what can and should be a breath of fresh air, a chance to quiet our minds and still our spirits, renewing ourselves for the work of Christian discipleship. So then, what are we to say to the Father when it’s just us alone with him? The following prompts, for prayer or for journaling, will provide you with inspiration and guidance for making your time in eucharistic adoration a time you truly cherish — and even look forward to.

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GO TO THE SOURCE As we learn in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, the Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian life.” But what does that mean for us practically, in the way we live each day? In adoration, we can contemplate the role we allow the Eucharist — or, more broadly, Jesus’ sacrifice for us — to play in our daily routines. Do we consider Jesus’ love for us the source from which our lives flow? Do our words and actions witness that we have been bought with a price, and accordingly, do we respond with gratitude? Do we live as though we have been freed from sin, or do we choose to remain chained to earthly concerns and pursuits? REFLECT: What does it mean to you that the Eucharist is the source of your life as a Christian? Think or write

about what you’ve done or said in the past week that would serve as testimony to the power of the Eucharist to fuel joyful missionary disciples.

REACH FOR THE SUMMIT Not only is the Eucharist our primary source of grace, but it’s also the pinnacle of all we hope to achieve as Christians: sacrificial, perfect love poured out freely and without reservation. When we spend time gazing upon the Eucharist, we’re looking into the heart of ultimate love — experiencing a bond more powerful than any mortal beings can build together. Our relationship with God is the most important one we’ll ever have, and even as we grow in that relationship, it prepares us to unite completely with God when we reach heaven — the pinnacle of Christian longing.

JENNIFER SCROGGINS, WRITER • NAOMI VRAZO, PHOTOGRAPHER


REFLECT: Think or write about how attending Mass prepares you to get to heaven. How do you feel after you’ve just received Communion? List three areas in which you believe you’re on the right path in your Christian journey, then challenge yourself to identify three areas where you need to change or improve. (Then ask God for the strength to do so.)

EXPERIENCE THE REAL PRESENCE

GO IN PEACE, TO LOVE AND SERVE

The sacrament of the Eucharist is not merely a symbol. It is, quite literally, a miracle that we can experience every day of our lives if we choose to attend Mass or a Communion service. And, of course, if we choose to believe. For many Catholics, the idea that the bread and wine indeed become the actual body and blood of Christ has become just that: an idea, not a reality. But adoration provides a perfect opportunity for anyone, at any stage of belief, to dig deeply into what is in their hearts. REFLECT: Do you believe in the real presence? Do you feel God coming into your presence and into your body when you receive

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INSPIRATION? IF JOURNALING OR MEDITATING FEELS TOO DAUNTING, TRY THESE TIPS TO GET MORE COMFORTABLE WITH SPENDING TIME IN EUCHARISTIC ADORATION:

Communion? If not, don’t be ashamed. Spend time understanding why you feel the way you do. What’s holding you back from fully believing in transubstantiation? Do you struggle to believe in miracles? Is it hard to believe that God loves you so much he would freely give himself to you at every Mass? If you do believe in the real presence, how do you feel knowing God is literally, physically with you in the Eucharist?

In the pastoral letter Unleash the Gospel, Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron explains that the Eucharist stamps us with “the pattern of Christ’s own self-giving love so that we can reproduce that pattern in our own lives.” He also reminds us that the goal of the liturgy isn’t simply to receive the sacrament and then go home, but “to become a living tabernacle through which Christ is made present to others.” And so when Mass ends, we are sent forth to love and serve the Lord. It’s an active, literal command for which we then enthusiastically give thanks to God. But are we genuinely grateful for that call to evangelization and discipleship?

REFLECT: Have you ever talked to a non-Catholic about the Eucharist? How would you explain what it is and why it is essential to our Catholic faith and our Christian lives? How does Mass prepare you to go out into the world and share your experience, through both words and deeds?

WALK HUMBLY WITH GOD In the Eucharist, we see an image of both triumph and humility. The sacrament represents Jesus’ victory over sin and death, but we’re also reminded that our Lord and savior not only chose to become man and live among us, but that he chose to die in a painful, public way, humbling himself on the cross. In this way, so let us use our time in adoration to humbly bring to God all our prayers, fears, wants and needs, recognizing that he wants to carry it all for us — and that our lives are ultimately in God’s control. REFLECT: What aspects of your life do you still need to turn over to God’s hands? What burdens or sorrows do you carry that you haven’t discussed with God? Knowing all your power comes from God, name the areas where you need healing, and ask for God’s loving mercy.

JENNIFER SCROGGINS is a writer and editor based in Northern Kentucky, where she is an active member of St. Paul Parish. A graduate of Northwestern University, Jennifer serves as an editor for Unleash the Gospel. Away from work, Jennifer loves to travel and enjoys attending Mass while exploring other countries.

:15

Start with just 15 minutes. Though you’ll often hear about a “holy hour,” God is just like any other father when it comes to spending time with his children: Even a short visit delights his heart.

Pray the Rosary. The Rosary is the perfect go-to when you need a form of guided prayer. It removes any creative barriers and helps you work naturally into a rhythm.

Read Scripture. Take along a Bible and read through your favorite passages. Or, pick a book with which you’re less familiar and dive in. You can’t go wrong, whatever you choose!

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Explore your parish’s library. Many parishes have a small library with religious education materials, or they keep pamphlets in the church’s gathering space. Any such reading materials can become excellent starting points to calm your mind and direct your thinking toward God.

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JENNA GUIZAR is the founder and creative director of Blessed is She, a worldwide Catholic women’s ministry focused on the mission of prayer and community. Jenna is a wife and mother living in sunny Arizona, where she pretends to love football for her husband, reads lots of books to her daughters and tries not to burn mac and cheese on the daily. She loves Twitter, podcasts and the days she doesn’t burn mac and cheese.

GUIZAR Finding community through faith and friendship 60

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DO YOU THINK THERE ARE OBSTACLES TO CATHOLICS REACHING OUT AND F ORMING FRIENDSHIPS WITH EACH OTHER? JEN N A: I believe the most important foundation is the Lord. The second-most important foundation in Catholic friendships is honesty. We can’t know how to pray with each other, we can’t know what to pray for, and we can’t know what we’re asking God to do if we don’t know the story. If I don’t know your story, I can’t know how to walk with you. If I don’t know your story, I can’t know how to ask for healing. If I don’t know your story, I can’t know what direction we’re going. Honesty is huge. Honesty opens up real conversations that can crack open hardened hearts and begin to soften them. Honesty allows for a sliver of God to enter in and heal. So, I think the biggest obstacle to Catholics forming friendships is fear. I believe it’s fear of rejection, of not looking how you want to look, of not being accepted for the woman or man you believe you’re called to be. But the only way for fear to be shattered is if we love. Perfect love drives out fear. That’s what God does for us: He loves us perfectly so all fear is stripped away. But we also have to be that for each other. We have to strive to love perfectly so fear can be driven away. We have to love in order for honesty to even be an option on the table. It’s a cycle, this dance of fear, rejection, honesty and love. But once we surrender to the Holy Spirit, it becomes easier every single day to love, to be honest and to walk with each other.

WHAT W OULD YOU SAY TO SOMEONE WHO IS SEARCHING F OR CATHOLIC COMMUNIT Y BUT DOESN’T KNO W WHERE TO TURN OR HO W TO START? JEN N A: It’s so hard. Friendships are hard. Community is hard. It takes boldness; it takes courage; it takes vulnerability; it takes patience. But it’s worth it. The stepping out, day in and day out, is worth it once you’ve found a friend who’s like Jesus to you. A friend who prays with you right then and there on the phone in the middle of your emotional breakdown. A friend who comes by and doesn’t just leave cookies but offers to praise God with you over your good news. A friend who invites you to confession and Bible studies and says, “How’s your heart?” as she sits there and waits for your response. It’s worth it to text an old acquaintance, to sit next to that family at Mass, to stop someone in the parking lot and say, “Hey, want to get a coffee or go to dinner?” It’s worth it to put yourself out there and say, “I’d love to pray together. How can I pray for you?” and then do it, right then and there. This is authentic friendship. This is being Jesus to each other. It’s so hard to start. It’s so hard to maintain. But it is worth it.

SARA ALTAIR, PHOTOGRAPHER

WHAT DO YOU WISH YOU HAD KNO WN OR DONE AS A YOUNG ADULT BEF ORE YOU GOT MARRIED? J ENNA : This is a hard question for me! I got married fairly young; I had just turned 22. I was still so young in my formation as a Catholic. I was still so young in my understanding of adulthood. I was still so young in how I handled friendships (friends who discipline you for struggling with chastity!) and relationships (struggles with chastity!) — I was still just young. I remember struggling in our marriage a few years back, thinking, Maybe I should have dated my husband longer; maybe then I would have predicted these problems arising. But I simply don’t believe that’s true. There are some parts of life (especially when it comes to sickness and health) that are unforeseeable. There are some aspects of relationships that can never be anticipated, and the shock of those moments will sometimes knock us down. But that’s where you see the healing power of our mighty God. That’s where you see the spectacular faithfulness of a God who never lets us down. That’s where you see the goodness of a God who walks with you, who shines light into the darkness, who lifts you up every single time you’re thrown down. I can’t say I wish I’d traveled more or I wish I had been better formed or I wish I had known more about my husband or about marriage or about children or about family life. I can’t say I wish I had done it differently, because God used all of it. He used every single wrong turn, every single setback, every single cry in the shower to show up and love me. He loved me through the sacraments. He loved me through adoration. He loved me through holy friendships. He loved me through music. Every single step we’re taking, he is with us, lighting the way. And even when we veer off course, he doesn’t leave. He continues to walk with us, lighting the way to the path he desires us to be on. He will use every single step to ultimately help us find the way. And our lives, if ordered in his will, no matter the path they took, will glorify his name.

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HO W DO YOU STAY CONNECTED TO CHRIST WITH THE DEMANDS THAT COME WITH BEING A WIFE AND MOTHER AND DOING MINISTRY W ORK? J E N N A: I feel a deep sense of commitment, integrity and motivation to stay close to the Lord for this ministry and for my family. I don’t want to be a clanging cymbal. I want to be filled with love. I want to overflow in love. I want to be so swallowed up by his love that it spills out of me. I don’t want to be so parched that I don’t quite know how I’ll ever be fed to be able to give any more of myself. He is the living water, and I want to drink him in by his word, his sacraments, the beauty of our Church, so I can not only be close to him, but be a vessel for him. To practically do this, I have a weekly holy hour written into my calendar. My husband knows about it; my kids know about it; my baby-sitter knows about it; my co-workers know about it. It is not a questionable date on my calendar, it is a certain one, where I get help to be able to make it there. My husband and I also do worship with our kids most mornings, and I pray the Rosary with my daughters most evenings. It doesn’t happen every day, but I know there is grace there. The one weekly holy hour is my saving grace from which all else flows. And I don’t just feel obligated to do more; I desire to be with him more out of great love and gratitude to our Lord, and he meets me there every time.

YOU STARTED BLESSED IS SHE BECAUSE YOU SAID YOU ALWAYS WANTED A SISTER. NO W YOU HAVE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF THEM. HO W HAS GAINING SO MANY SISTERS HELPED YOU GRO W IN YOUR CATHOLIC FAITH? J ENNA : Words could never express how much Blessed is She has impacted my life. From each one of our writers, to the team of women who work on this ministry with me day in and day out, to every single woman who comes up to me at retreats and says, “Would you pray with me?” — each one of them has impacted my life in more ways than I could say. I believe so badly in the power of sharing our stories. I believe the Lord moves and breathes in our stories that give him glory. Because of things I’ve shared in the past about different aspects of my life — my difficulties in marriage, my struggles with being a mother, my struggled attempts at being a “good Catholic woman” — women know they can share their stories with me. We find bits of ourselves in other people’s stories where we ultimately strive to see the redemptive movement of God. I don’t just share a story of struggling in marriage, motherhood, identity as a Catholic woman; I share about the redemption of Our Father who calls me his own. And so each woman feels safe to tell her story, to tell the story honestly to those who will hear it, bear it with her and, most importantly, pray with her through it. And prayer, it changes everything. A relationship with God changes everything.

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UNLEA SHE D Q UESTIONNA IR E

KATHLEENE HALEY-FALLS

WHAT WAS THE LAST BOOK YOU READ? Mary: God’s Yes to Man: Encyclical Letter: Redemptoris Mater

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST FEAR? Heights. I still haven’t recovered from Pikes Peak 25 years ago.

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST PET PEEVE? Telemarketers. They won’t take no for an answer.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE FEAST DAY? St. Patrick’s Day. I grew up in an Irish Catholic family; it’s a big tradition for me. Everything is green that day, and there’s lots of great music and laughter.

WHAT IS YOUR BEST QUALITY? Perseverance. I will keep plugging away at something until I get it done!

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WHAT IS THE BIGGEST RISK YOU’VE TAKEN? Starting my own business. No one in my family ever had their own business. It was a huge learning curve.

WHAT IS YOUR EARLIEST MEMORY? Reading books to my little brother Pat. He was two years younger than me, and I would crawl into his crib and read to him.

WHAT VIRTUE DO YOU MOST ADMIRE IN OTHERS? Kindness. It encompasses a wide range of emotions and is comforting to any age and any circumstance.

WHAT WORDS DO YOU USE TOO MUCH? “Eh” at the end of a sentence — something I picked up living in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

WHAT GIVES YOU THE MOST HAPPINESS? Doing things for others, especially feeding people.

WHAT’S THE FIRST THING YOU DO WHEN YOU WAKE UP IN THE MORNING? After my cup of tea, I pray the Divine Office.

DIEGO DIAZ, ILLUSTRATOR


WHAT TALENT OR SKILL DO YOU WISH YOU HAD?

WHAT DO YOU VALUE THE MOST IN YOUR FRIENDS?

I wish I was better at math. My right brain does not like going over to the left side or the math side. I would rather scrub floors than do accounting.

Kindness, generosity and loyalty.

WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF?

WHO IS YOUR FICTIONAL HERO?

Sharing my love of Jesus with other people and having them respond with the same joy.

Captain Jean-Luc Picard of the starship Enterprise.

WHAT IS YOUR VISION OF HEAVEN? Heaven is a more enhanced version of earth. Earth is like “heaven lite” with all the beauty of God’s creation. Everyone will have a job they love and do it with great joy for all eternity.

WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST JOB? After high school, my first job was a negative cutter in an amateur photo lab in downtown Detroit. It was in the film days, cutting rolls of film, putting them in sleeves and into envelopes to be delivered to the department stores.

WHAT IS YOUR MOST CHERISHED POSSESSION?

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE AUTHOR? Janice T. Connell.

WHICH SAINT DO YOU TURN TO FOR INTERCESSION THE MOST? St. Thèrése the Little Flower.

HOW DO YOU DEFINE A “MISSIONARY DISCIPLE”? One who goes out into the world to evangelize. A “worker bee” for Jesus.

WHAT KEEPS YOU UP AT NIGHT? It’s uninterrupted time when I can get jobs completed.

HOW DO YOU WANT TO BE REMEMBERED WHEN YOU DIE? God gave her gifts; she recognized them and used them.

My Secular Discalced Carmelite scapular.

WHAT IS YOUR LIFE MOTTO OR MANTRA?

WHAT IS YOUR MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENT?

WHAT MAKES YOU LAUGH?

Backing my new car into the garage door when it was closed.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE HOBBY OR PASTIME?

“Keep the faith.”

Groaner jokes.

HOW DO YOU DEFINE SUCCESS? Success is when you accomplish a task that makes you smile.

A former parishioner at St. Patrick Parish (now Divine Grace) in Carleton, Kathleene Haley-Falls is a photographic restoration specialist currently living in Alabama. Her desire to “find the face of Jesus” took her on a 35-year journey to discover the real face hidden in the Shroud of Turin. She was inspired to restore a copy of the Shroud of Turin, and she explains the strenuous process in her book Finding the Face of Jesus published in March. Her restoration of the Shroud of Turin has received numerous accolades, and many people have declared it spiritually moving. Falls, a member of the Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites, holds several professional degrees, including master of photography, master artist and master electronic imaging and photographic craftsman, through the Professional Photographers of America. She has received numerous awards for her art, photography and restoration work.

Photographing flowers trying to capture God’s exquisite, artistic creative beauty. Also, playing my guitar and hammered dulcimer.

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#ASKUTG I find community and support within my parish, St. John Vianney in Shelby Township. I am 23, and I am part of a wonderful ministry at my church called FIGHT (Following in God’s Holy Teachings) Ministries. I am visually impaired, and when I was 19, I was so lonely. I found out about this wonderful group for young adults, and it ended up helping me with more than just loneliness. It is a place where we meet weekly to learn more about our faith; it is a place where you can share anything and not be judged; it is a place that led me to other ministries like Tap Into Life; and, most importantly, it is a place where we learn how to be missionaries. This has helped me in so many ways, and if I am more solid in the understanding of my faith, it makes me a better missionary.

#ASKUTG QUOTES ARE SOURCED FROM SURVEY RESPONSES TO THE MONTHLY QUESTION IN THE UTG NEWSLETTER. LOOK FOR MORE #ASKUTG QUOTES ON @UTGDETROIT SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS AND SIGN UP FOR THE NEWSLETTER AT UNLEASHTHEGOSPEL.ORG.

-TIFFANE JAMES, ST. JOHN VIANNEY PARISH, SHELBY TOWNSHIP

AS A LIFELONG CATHOLIC, I WAS SURE I KNEW EVERYTHING ABOUT GOD, JESUS AND THE CHURCH. I HAD NO DESIRE TO SHARE IT. BOY, WAS I WRONG! WHEN SOMEONE ASKED ME TO JOIN A PARISH BIBLE STUDY GROUP, I HALF-HEARTEDLY JOINED. THREE YEARS LATER, I AM ON FIRE WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT. YOU CAN REPEAT THE WORDS OF THE BIBLE BUT NOT UNDERSTAND IF YOU DON’T TALK AND THINK ABOUT THEM. MY SUPPORT IS A DEDICATED BIBLE TEACHER AND A GROUP OF 20 STUDENTS MUCH LIKE ME. WE CALL EACH OTHER OUR “SECOND FAMILY,” AND YOU CAN FEEL THE LOVE IN THE ROOM. -JAN JARRELL, OUR LADY OF THE LAKES PARISH, WATERFORD

I find faith community in Detroit. Whether it be with the rest of my team in Jornadas at Ste. Anne, the men preparing for the Hispanic Men’s Conference or other parish leaders I meet throughout the year in different celebrations, I know God is working through all of us, and I am thankful to be a part of the mystical body of Christ. -RICARDO HERNANDEZ, STE. ANNE PARISH, DETROIT

I FIND FAITH COMMUNITY IN MY FRIENDSHIP WITH MY FAVORITE SAINTS AND SAINTS TO BE! IN ASKING THEM TO PRAY WITH ME, I KNOW I HAVE THEIR SUPPORT. BY THEIR LIVES, I FIND EXCITEMENT AND ENCOURAGEMENT TO SHARE THEIR MISSION IN DOING GOD’S WILL. BLESSED SOLANUS CASEY, DOROTHY DAY AND ST. TERESA OF CALCUTTA ARE FAVORITES. BY THEIR LASTING QUOTES, LIFE STORIES AND ENCOUNTERS WITH OUR BLESSED LORD, I EAGERLY STRIVE TO KEEP MY EYES AND HANDS OPEN TO THE NEEDS OF THE EVERYDAY PEOPLE I ENCOUNTER, BE IT OPENING A DOOR, IN A PARKING LOT, IN A CHURCH PEW OR IN A PASSING THOUGHT OF SOMEONE I HADN’T HEARD FROM IN A WHILE. WITH HIS GRACE OF JOYFUL COMPASSION, I LET THE WORDS OF A SISTERLY LOVE BUBBLE UP! IT’S EXCITING TO FIND STORIES OF THE SAINTS WHO ALSO WALKED THE WALK WE WALK. -LORI TAEPKE, OUR LADY OF VICTORY PARISH, NORTHVILLE

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WHEN I ENTERED THE CHURCH SEVERAL YEARS AGO, THE FIRST THING I DID WAS JOIN THE KNIGHTS OF COLUMBUS. I KNEW I WOULD NEED TO SURROUND MYSELF WITH LIKEMINDED MEN WHO COULD HELP ME GROW IN MY FAITH. MY COUNCIL HAS PROVIDED ME WITH A FAITH COMMUNITY AND THE OPPORTUNITY TO ASSIST THOSE IN NEED.

Throughout the state and region, there is a large community of individuals with disabilities and their families who seek to grow in their faith. In my area, there is a group of such individuals who meet every Wednesday to help each other grow in faith and find new ways to praise God. Many families were feeling left out of parish life; however, this group and local efforts have changed things.

-ALEX JAKSTYS, ST. MARY PARISH, ROYAL OAK

-BOB FURTADO, ST. EDWARD ON THE LAKE PARISH, LAKEPORT

WHERE DO YOU FIND

COMMUNITY AND SUPPORT

IN YOUR MISSION?

I FIND COMMUNITY AND SUPPORT IN MY WOMEN’S MINISTRY GROUP. WE WALK TOGETHER AS SISTERS IN FAITH, SUPPORTING EACH OTHER THROUGH LIFE’S JOYS AND TRIALS AS WE GROW DEEPER IN OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH JESUS CHRIST AND EACH OTHER. -JUDY MATEN, NATIONAL SHRINE OF THE LITTLE FLOWER BASILICA, ROYAL OAK

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PHOTO E SSAY

St. Lawrence ON T HE FEAST OF THE ASSUM P TI ON I N 1 8 7 4 , S T. L AWRE NC E ’S FIR ST C H UR C H W A S DE DICAT E D IN UT ICA . W H E N FIR E DE ST R OY E D THE BU I LDIN G IN 1 9 0 4 , THE P E OP L E OF S T. L AWRE NC E CAM E TO G E T H E R , W O R SH IP IN G IN H O ME S A N D A R E N T E D H A L L B E F O R E A NEW CHURCH WAS CON S TRU C TE D I N 1 9 0 8 . WHE N YOU COME TO ST. L A W R E N C E N O W, T H E SA ME SE N SE O F CO MMUN IT Y IS EV I D EN T. TAKE A WALK THROU GH THE ANNU AL AP P L E F E S T A N D YO U’ L L SE E T H E PA STO R MA K IN G J O K E S W IT H A C H ILD, V OLU NT EERS W ORKING THE GRI L L S , C L E ANI NG TAB L E S AND RUN N IN G B IN G O A N D YO UN G ST UDE N T S SP O RT IN G T H E IR ST. L AWR ENCE SCHOOL T-SHIRTS AND J E RS E YS WI TH P RI D E . AP P L E F E ST SE RV E S A S T H E MA IN FUN DR A ISE R F O R T H E SC H O O L A N D PARI SH, AND ATTE NDEES CO M E F ROM AL L OVE R M I C HI GAN. M E M B E R S O F T H E CO MMUN IT Y CA ME TO G E T H E R IN T H E E A R LY 1 9 0 0 S TO S U PPO RT ON E AN OTHER THROU GH A HARD TI M E , AND THE CO MMUN IT Y CO N T IN UE S TO CO ME TO G E T H E R E V E RY Y E A R TO S U PPO RT ONE AN OTHER IN L I VI NG THE FAI TH, E D U CATI NG THE I R C H IL DR E N A N D SUSTA IN IN G T H E V IB R A N T L IF E O F T H E PA R ISH .

Father Roman Pasievzny, pastor of St. Lawrence, celebrates Mass.

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NAOMI VRAZO AND VALAURIAN WALLER, PHOTOGRAPHERS


Parish

Utica

Arthur DesRosiers was a prominent architect in the early 1900s who designed many churches in the archdiocese, including St. Lawrence.

St. Lawrence prides itself on having three things at the center of its K-8 school: Christ, family and academics.

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During AppleFest, St. Lawrence also hosts Nightfire, an event that allows festivalgoers to step into the church, away from the bustle of rides and carnival games, to light a candle to place in front of the altar, where the Eucharist is exposed.

Joy comes to us through the Gospel, through community, through the pursuit of our eternal home. Living out the faith is a journey of joy.

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Father Roman Pasievzny, pastor of St. Lawrence, greets parishioners after 4:30 p.m. Mass.

St. Lawrence students work diligently to achieve academic excellence.

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Each candle represents the prayers of an individual. During Nightfire, multiple priests are available for confession or just to talk. There is also an opportunity for prayer ministry, and the church remains open for anyone who wants to take a moment to pray before the Eucharist.

“Parishes need to help parishioners to grow continually in discipleship and deepen their relationship with Christ.� Unleash the Gospel, Marker 9.2

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Temporary associate pastor, Father Bryan Shackett, and seminarian.

The vision of St. Lawrence School: Through the power of the Holy Spirit and the intercession of St. Lawrence, we will evangelize students to be joyful missionary disciples and encourage a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

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-Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron

A L L S O U L S ’ D A Y R E M E M B R A N C E • S A T U R D A Y , N O V E M B E R 2 On All Souls’ Day we are in communion with those who are no longer with us. Please join us at Mass and Remembrance Night Drive Thru where we will remember and honor the memories of our dearly departed.

Holy Sepulchre Cemetery-Southfield • 9 a.m. Mass • Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron Our Lady of Hope Cemetery-Brownstown • 11 a.m. Mass • Bishop Gerald Battersby Presiding

REMEMBRANCE NIGHT DRIVE THRU

Join us for our Annual Remembrance Night drive thru at Holy Sepulchre & Our Lady of Hope Cemeteries. Gates will remain open from 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m. for family viewing of vigil lights. Complimentary luminary bags will be available in the office.

G AT H E R T H E M H O M E

Gather Them Home is a free mission program of the Archdiocese of Detroit Cemeteries to properly lay to rest the cremains of those who have gone before us. If you wish to have the cremains of your loved one buried during one of the Masses listed above call us at 313-879-3741.

I T ’ S N E V E R T O O E A R LY T O S TA R T P L A N N I N G 313-879-3741 | cfcsdetroit.org Holy Sepulchre | Our Lady of Hope | St. Joseph Holy Cross | Mount Carmel | Mount Hope


Profile for Archdiocese of Detroit

Unleash the Gospel Magazine: October/November 2019  

A bi-monthly print and digital publication by the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Unleash the Gospel Magazine: October/November 2019  

A bi-monthly print and digital publication by the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Profile for aod87