OUR LADY OF THE HOLY ROSARY CHAPEL
205 Fulton Street
Elgin, IL. 60120
4th Sunday after Pentecost - June 21, 2015
No one can deny that the Second Vatican Council was the catalyst for change within the Church. With all the "changes" the laity have often become confused and bewildered as they see and hear so many in the official Church institution either question or openly deny Catholic teaching. Faced today with what is truly a "challenge of faith" -in the face of liturgical lunacy, theological heresy, virtual schism (taking place in the official Church) we are called, as members of the Mystical Body of Christ, to "stay on board" and remain attached to the teaching Magesterium and Petrine Office:
The Gospel today contains truths of our Catholic faith that Our Lord wished to convey to the world, but also to connect them very closely with St. Peter. We see Our Lord enter a boat; in fact, it was St. Peter’s boat and from aboard the boat of St. Peter Our Lord addresses those who are gathered on the shore. We also see Him give the order to lay down their nets to catch fish, and because of their obedience to Him, we see the Apostles catch so many fish that the net was finally broken. All of these events today are what we call as “types” or symbolical representations of important truths that Our Lord was teaching.
First, we see that St. Peter’s boat is a type or symbol of the Catholic Church. We can compare this boat to a large ship. Travelers who wish to go somewhere and reach some distant location, at least it was common years ago, would often get on a ship and then they’d had to live together with others during the voyage. Many a ship will cross oceans or great distances; sometimes in good and sunny weather, sometimes through storms which might break out and cause or threaten, or otherwise possibly bring harm or dangers to those on the ship. If a ship or vessel is strong and seaworthy, if the crew is capable, in due time the location is reached and the travelers on the ship will arrive safely at their destination. You can see the symbol of the Catholic Church here. By means of the Sacrament of Baptism the Church admits persons into her company and brings them along the journey of life to their heavenly home. The faithful must live together during this voyage on earth. The world is to the Church a very large ocean, and the Church exists in this world to gather her children, to keep them safe, to guide them and carry them through this life journey or voyage. Sometimes life presents sun and happiness, peace…at other times those on the journey are presented with storms of persecution and oppression, suffering that is frequently brought on by the powers of the world and of those who are in darkness. But the Church is strong, She is a strong and mighty, a well built vessel, and her divine captain is skilful and able to stare the course. Those who follow the rules set down for the journey will arrive home safely.
It is significant that the boat Our Lord was on belong to St. Peter. It was from the boat of St. Peter that Our Lord taught His people, and he chose St. Peter’s boat to show that He intended His church to have authority, and in what office that authority would reside, with divine assistance. This divine assistance that was promised to that office or authority would be in the Church until the end of time. Our Lord indicated that His Church, the true Catholic Church, was to be St. Peter’s boat, and that it was to St. Peter that He gave authority to teach in His Name and in His presence and with His aid. This office, this authority which we call “Petrine” would remain in every place and in every age. Wherever Peter is, there is the Church. Wherever the Petrine office of teaching is, there is the Catholic Church. And where did St. Peter establish his office, his See if you will? It is at St. Peter’s, the greatest of Churches in Christendom and this is in Rome. It is in Rome where St. Peter and his remains are laid to rest in a magnificent tomb. It is at St. Peter’s where the pope rules the Church and possesses supreme authority to guide and teach the whole and entire Catholic Church until the end of time.
Another symbol or type is that the Catholic Church, the boat of St. Peter, is intended to contain all of mankind, not just a part of mankind, and to bring them through the journey of life to their heavenly home. We should be very happy and pleased that we are on board this Petrine boat. As Catholics we should be very grateful and show our gratitude by proving that we are worthy members of the one, holy, Catholic Church; that we are loyal and obedient to her commandments, her doctrines, her precepts and laws. We should always show our love and reverence for the office of the pope, St. Peter’s successor, and for all those who are truly in union with that office. We should be thankful that we have true bishops and priests who work in union with the Petrine office and we should frequently pray for them. All those who despise the teaching authority of the church and who put obstacles in the way of the Church and her ability to carry souls through this life, all those who persecute and try to cause storms against the boat of St. Peter and who even abandon it, will some day acknowledge to their eternal regret that it is impossible to act contrary to the will of Christ and yet remain unpunished for it. Yes, in this life they often succeed, but they have their day.
Let us always be thankful to God for His great love and goodness towards us in admitting us, through the Sacrament of Baptism, into the boat of St. Peter. We are children of the Holy Catholic Church; let us go through the journey of life bravely and with the knowledge that the Church will protect us, the Church will guide us, but only if we humble ourselves, if we listen, if we cooperate with grace and obey the rules. We must also resist temptations, and not put ourselves in the occasion of sin. We have to remove ourselves from the pollution of the world, and from those who are polluted in matters of religion. Yes, it is difficult at times, because we will often find ourselves at odds with family, with friends, but these are merely the passing storms of this life. Despite all our best efforts, many storms will come our way and assault and even cause us anxiety, but after every storm the sun comes out, and we know and trust Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, when He founded His Church on the rock, and He told us very clearly and firmly for all times: “The gates of hell shall not prevail” and “I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world.” Remain always with Peter and the Petrine teaching office, and you can be assured that He is with your always and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against you. +
CORPUS CHRISTI SERMON THOUGHTS FROM THE PULPIT
When a Catholic priest, one who is ordained by a Catholic bishop a successor of the Apostles, takes up the small wafer at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass , he does not say that “this is God” or “this is the body of Jesus” or other similar statements. We say in the name of Jesus “This is My Body.” That's because a true priest, a Catholic priest is "another Christ." When those words are spoken, the presence of Jesus (His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity) are present and replace the bread. So we have the word in Latin “Corpus” as we say “Corpus Domini Nostri Jesus Christi” which means “Body” and on the altar rests the Body of our Lord Jesus Christ, His glorified Body. God is present by His omnipresence: we can think for a moment that the same God who created the Heavens, the earth, the entire universe makes Himself present on the altar where the True Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is offered. It is really a very simple thing to understand, as simple as it is profound. Perhaps some of you might get it, or understand why it is that I can’t understand why anyone could possibly be so absorbed in other things, in politics, in health, in sports... and not so absorbed in taking our problems, our worries, our difficulties to Jesus who, as God of all things, creator of all things, He makes Himself present on the altar and dwells in the tabernacle for us. Why are so many looking elsewhere?
This feast today is all about transubstantiation: the substance of the bread ceases to be, and Jesus takes its place.
St. Augustine tells us that God became man so that man might become God. And this is exactly what Holy Communion does in us and for us. As I said, as we eat any natural food, we assimilate and absorb such foods into ourselves, because we are greater than these things. In Holy Communion, we receive Jesus, but we also become united with all those others who receive the Blessed Eucharist. In Holy Communion it is Our Lord who assimilates us into Himself, because He is greater than we are. Holy Communion makes each of us more Christ like, even more human. The more Christ-like we become, we are in all our actions, our efforts, our ways, our habits and our thoughts, becoming more Christ like, more divinized in a sense. This is why St. Paul said to the Galatians “I live, now not I; but Christ liveth in me.” St. Thomas Aquinas tells us “The Holy Eucharist unites us to Christ and unites us as well one to another. It makes us con- corporeal.” So remember that our bodies are made sacred, because of this union of with Christ in the Blessed Sacrament when we receive Him. This is why the relics of the saints are so precious to us. This is why the bodies of good Catholics are blessed, carried to Church for a Requiem Mass and blessed with prayers and incense and Holy Water: we are the temples of God where the Body and Blood of Christ dwelt when we were alive. How sad that so many in the Novus Ordo are carried away in urns and ashes…some to the cemetery, others to be placed on a mantel in the living room, and worse: just scattered to the winds! So it is: the Novus Ordo, the New Church has shown callous and disrespect for Holy Communion, they also show disrespect for the body, the Temple of the Holy Ghost.
On this great feast of Corpus Christi, let us remember that in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass, grace, Our Lord, and charity are united. The Mystical Body of Christ (the Church) is nourished and developed along the line of grace from this Sacrifice. The Blessed Sacrament is the nourishment that our souls need, or we will die. Let us come away from Mass today with a great sense of gratitude for having Jesus present in our Chapel and know that He invites us to His heavenly banquet. Appreciate what He has said and done, not by words, but in your actions and in the way you live. That is the proof of a true Catholic, a good Catholic. The good Catholic is the one who is nourished in the Blessed Sacrament, who grows in the life of grace, who practices true charity. They have everlasting life in them.