Consuming Jesus, the Bread of Life

08-05-2018Pastor's LetterVery Rev. Gregory B. Wilson, VF

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

Be sure to come out and show your appreciation to Fr. Michel for his wonderful priestly ministry in our parish. Father Michel’s farewell reception will be next Sunday, August 12, in St. Angela Hall from 2:00 to 3:30pm. On August 13, Fr. Michel begins at St. Louis in Dillon, SC, and Infant Jesus Mission in Marion, SC. How blessed we have been to have Fr. Michel for a little over a year! (Please note that Father Michel has requested that if people wish to give any monetary gifts, they be directed to St. Mary’s for the St. Juan Diego statue planned for the north garden.)

A couple of notes about the recent email scam I mentioned in my column last week. Be assured that there has not been a breach of security involving our parish email server. The deceptive emails have an “official-looking” address, but it is not our actual parish address/domain name. Anyone can create accounts that look similar, and they can do it from anywhere in the world. Also, this is clearly someone, even in another country, trolling our site and reading our materials. In addition to the email address that is not one of ours, you will notice that the language is odd with strange capitalizations – another giveaway. Other parishes and businesses have been victims, too. We, of course, pray for the conversion of such people. The main point is: To protect yourself, never send funds requested through an email without talking directly to the source.

Note our upcoming Holy Day of Obligation – the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Masses will be: Vigil – Tuesday, August 14 at 5:30pm (church); Wednesday, August 15 at 7:00am (Old St. Mary’s), 12:00pm & 5:30pm (church), and 7:00pm in Spanish (Old St. Mary’s). Always recall the “obligation” to attend Mass is a loving obligation – just as a husband and wife have an obligation to be faithful and raise children with love and care. It’s something important.

As we continue to hear from the Bread of Life Discourse in the Gospel, enjoy this excerpt from one of the Church Fathers, St. Justin Martyr, writing in the year 148, which shows clearly the continuity of our faith from the early Church: “We call this food Eucharist, and no one else is permitted to partake of it, except one who believes our teaching to be true and who has been washed in the washing which is for the remission of sins and for regeneration [baptism] and is thereby living as Christ enjoined.

“For not as common bread nor common drink do we receive these; but since Jesus Christ our Savior was made incarnate by the word of God and had both flesh and blood for our salvation, so too, as we have been taught, the food which has been made into the Eucharist by the Eucharistic prayer set down by Him, and by the change of which our blood and flesh is nurtured, is both the flesh and the blood of that incarnated Jesus” (First Apology 66:1-20 [A.D. 148]).

Let us pray for each other always,

Father Wilson