Our seventh stain glass window brings us to the twentieth century. It depicts St. Pius X. Like St. Patrick he wears the liturgical vestments for celebrating Mass - in this case a full length alb, a stole and a "fiddle-back" style gold chasuble. With his left hand he hold a chalice and above it, in his right hand, he present a small consecrated host to a girl. She kneel reverently and wears a veil and dress for his First Communion. Her hands are covered by a communion cloth upon which is a paten so that no fragment would be lost (see John 6:12). It was Pope Pius X who judged that children could receive Holy Communion when they had reached the age of reason, that is, could distinguish between ordinary bread and the Eucharist.
Behind St. Pius X is the facade of St. Peter's Basilica. As Pope he wrote a simple Catechism to help ordinary people understand the Christian faith. Below are some questions and answers from the section on the Eucharist:
1 Q: What is the sacrament of the Eucharist? A: The Eucharist is a sacrament in which, by the marvelous conversion of the whole substance of bread into the Body of Jesus Christ, and that of wine into His precious Blood, is contained truly, really, and substantially, the Body, the Blood, the Soul and Divinity of the same Lord Jesus Christ, under the appearance of bread and wine as our spiritual food.
2 Q: In the Eucharist is there the same Jesus Christ who is in heaven, and who was born on earth of the Blessed Virgin? A: Yes, in the Eucharist there is truly the same Jesus Christ who is in heaven, and who was born on earth of the Blessed Virgin.
11 Q: What is the consecration? A: The consecration is the renewal, by means of the priest, of the miracle wrought by Jesus Christ at the Last Supper, of changing bread and wine into His adorable Body and Blood by saying: "This is My Body: This is My Blood."
30 Q: What are the effects which the Most Holy Eucharist produces in us? A: The principal effects which the Most Holy Eucharist produces in those who worthily receive it are these: (1) It preserves and increases the life of the soul, which is grace, just as natural food sustains and increases the life of the body; (2) It remits venial sins and preserves us from mortal sin; (3) It produces spiritual consolation.
31 Q: Does not the Most Holy Eucharist produce other effects in us? A: Yes; the Most Holy Eucharist produces three other effects in (1) It weakens our passions, and in particular it allays in us the fires of concupiscence; (2) It increases in us the fervor of charity towards God and our neighbor, and aids us to act in conformity with the will of Jesus Christ; (3) It gives us a pledge of future glory and of the resurrection of our body.
43 Q: In what does the preparation before Communion consist? A: Preparation before Communion consists in meditating for some time on Whom we are about to receive, and on who we are; and in making acts of faith, hope, charity, contrition, adoration, humility, and desire to receive Jesus Christ.
44 Q: In what does the thanksgiving after Communion consist? A: Thanksgiving after Communion consists in keeping ourselves recollected in order to honor the Lord who is within us; renewing our acts of faith, of hope, of charity, of adoration, of thanksgiving, of offerings, and of requests, especially for those graces which are most necessary for ourselves and for those for whom we are bound to pray.
Pope Pius X died on August 20, 1914 and on May 29, 1954, he who had become the two hundred fifty-ninth pope was canonized St. Pius X. His last will and testament bears the striking sentence: "I was born poor, I have lived in poverty, and I wish to die poor." His feast day is August 21.
This Thursday (August 3) I will be available for confessions from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. I encourage you to take advantage of the Holy Year opportunity to receive the sacrament of reconciliation.
On Saturday, August 5, Fr. Benedict Groeschel will celebrate a Mass for Life at 7;30 in Immaculate Conception, Everett, followed by a peaceful prayer vigil at the Planned Parenthood in Everett. We will leave from Holy Family at 6:15 a.m. for those who wish to car pool or caravan to Everett that morning.
Please take a look at our parish bulletin board for two other great Jubilee opportunities: The Western Washington Catholic Charismatic Renewal Conference, August 4-6, at the Everett Civic Auditorium and the FIRE Rally, October 14, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Portland, OR
If you are sixteen years of ago or older and have not been confirmed, please see the announcement in this Sunday's bulletin. Also you may call Sr. Mary Clare to register for grades 1 thru 6 religious education as well as First Penance and First Eucharist classes and classes for children thru teens who have not been baptized.
If you or someone you know is interested in finding out more about the teachings of the Catholic Church, please consider coming to the Faith Formation Classes for Adults and Older Teens, The classes begin on Thursday, Sept. 7. In the bulletin you will find the numbers to call for more information and to register.
Attention married & engaged couples: Come to a complete Natural Family Planning course to be held at St. Jude's Parish in Redmond. Learn about your Catholic faith and discover a modern, natural method of family planning. The course consists of four sessions on the follow- ing dates: Sept. 7 and 29, Oct. 27 and Nov. 17 at 7pm. Total cost is $55. For more information and to register, call Scott and Marie Elmenhurst at (425) 788-2453.