None of us deserves to receive Christ in the Eucharist. Holy Communion is always a completely unmerited gift that we receive as a result of God's grace. Nothing we can do by our own initiative makes us worthy that the Lord should enter our hearts. All we can do is try to be ready, try to "stay awake" and be attentive, and try to be truly grateful when our Lord gives Himself to us in the great eucharistic mystery.
Pope Benedict XVI has observed that the mission that was given to the apostles by our Lord contains a paradox. On the one hand, they were invited to remain with Him, to stay close to Him as intimate friends and companions. On the other hand, they were sent out to the whole world to proclaim His Gospel and to baptize in the name of the Holy Trinity. "Staying close" and "being sent away" is the paradoxical mission given to each of us who seek to follow Jesus Christ as His disciples.
In today's scriptural readings, God's revealed word is depicted as God's life-giving antidote to the death-dealing forces at work within our unredeemed human nature.
We see this very clearly in today's first reading from the Book of Kings. Elijah is despondent and depressed. Jezebel is hunting him down, seeking his life. Filled with self-pity, he escapes into the desert to sleep under a broom tree. He asks God to take his life.
DUBLIN -- The Church in Ireland is on the path to renewal, church leaders told pilgrims at the opening Mass of the 50th International Eucharistic Congress June 10.
Welcoming pilgrims from more than 120 countries at an open-air Mass, Dublin Archbishop Diarmuid Martin said, "The Church in Ireland rejoices today in the presence of pilgrims from many parts of the world who witness to the universality of our Catholic faith and who show their faith-filled fellowship and solidarity with the Church in Ireland."
DUBLIN — A new city center "Camino," or pilgrim walk, has been launched in Dublin as part of the celebrations surrounding the International Eucharistic Congress set for June 10-17.
The walk, involving prayerful visits to seven of Dublin's most historic Catholic and Anglican churches, is partly inspired by the famous pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain and partly inspired by the traditional Dublin devotion of visiting seven churches on Holy Thursday.