So there we have it!!
The whole Church is united with the offering and intercession of Christ
Not just the invisible Church
The visible Church as well
We have the Pope and the bishop and they are mentioned at every single Mass
We realize that it’s not just one person’s local parish or local diocese that is the Church
It is the UNIVERSAL CATHOLIC CHURCH that is represented and is participating in and is being offered to the Father in the Power of the Holy Spirit in Christ as the Body of Christ
Unity with our bishop is so critical
The unity with the Pope is so critical that it goes all the way back to the year 107
St. Ignatius of Antioch was a student of Polycarp, who was a student of John, the beloved disciple
So there is this LIVING FAITH
There is this LIVING TRADITION
St. Ignatius of Antioch says in Paragraph 1369, “Let only that the Eucharist be regarded as legitimate, which is celebrated under [the presidency of] the bishop or him to whom he has entrusted it.”
There are people who read John Ch 6
Jesus said, “My flesh is true food, my blood is true drink.”
We believe that HOLY COMMUNION REALLY IS JESUS
Jesus said at the Last Supper, “Take this, all of you, and eat of it. This is my Body. Take this drink of it. This is the New Covenant in my Blood.”
WE BELIEVE THAT!!
If a person does not have the ministerial priesthood united with the apostolic succession then it is NOT LEGITIMATE EUCHARIST
There is a relatively well known Christian who has been convicted in a really powerful way
So let’s listen to Fr. Mike tell the story…
There’s an issue here…
A person who doesn’t have any sense of the sacraments has no sense of what apostolic Tradition and apostolic succession is all about
So there is this sense that since Jesus did it, I CAN DO IT
I could get some unleavened bread and wine and say this is my body and this is my blood and it really is
THAT IS FALSE!!
From the very beginning, the power and capacity to confect to the Eucharist, to offer the sacrifice so that the bread and wine are transformed into the Body and Blood of Christ has ALWAYS been done by those VALIDLY ORDAINED IN APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION
This is not a medieval invention
It is beautiful that someone is realizing the truth about the Eucharist
There is this really critical piece
The Eucharist HAS TO BE UNITED WITH THE BISHOP AND THE UNIVERSAL CHURCH
The Eucharist HAS TO BE CONNECTED TO APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION
This goes all the way back to 107 AD
THIS IS A PRETTY CRITICAL THING FOR US!!
Paragraph 1370 says, “To the offering of Christ are united not only the members still here on earth, but also those already in the glory of heaven. In communion with and commemorating the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints, the Church offers the Eucharistic sacrifice. In the Eucharist the CHurch is as it were at the foot of the cross with Mary, united with the offering and intercession of Christ.”
THIS IS SO BEAUTIFUL!!
That is where we are at every Mass
We are at the foot of the Cross with Mary
Paragraph 1371 says, “The Eucharistic sacrifice is also offered for the faithful departed who ‘have died in Christ but are not yet wholly purified,’ so that they may be able to enter into the light and peace of Christ.”
We talked about Purgatory before
There are the faithful departed that have a relationship with God and no mortal sin that has broken or corrupted that relationship
They need to be perfected
They are not yet wholly purified
So we offer the Mass for them
The Mass actually is efficacious
IT DOES SOMETHING!!
What are the two things that the Mass does every time?
Gives God the Father glory and saves the world
Who belongs to the Church, the Body of Christ?
Not only the souls on earth and in heaven but also the holy souls in Purgatory
From the very beginning, the Church has recognized that we offer the sacrifice of the Mass for those who have died
St. Cyril of Jerusalem says in Paragraph 1371
St. Augustine says it in his book “Confessions”
Let’s listen to Fr. Mike tell the story
“I simply ask you to remember me at the Lord’s altar wherever you are.”
From the very beginning, it was common in the Church to say that we are offering the Eucharistic sacrifice for all the holy souls in Purgatory because we have always believed in Purgatory
What did the early Church believe?
They believed in Heaven, Hell, life on earth, and Purgatory
THey believed that our prayers actually assist those people in that process of purification in purgatory
It’s not just a common belief of Christians, it is a common practice
You may have loved ones who have died and felt so helpless
You may have thought there’s nothing more you can do for them
That’s not true
YOU CAN PRAY FOR THEM!!
You can offer Rosaries or the Chaplet of Divine Mercy
You can pray in any way you want
You can also have the Mass offered for them
This is a powerful thing to do
One of the ways we can express our love for someone and our faith in Jesus Christ who has conquered death
Too often we have funerals and we look at them as if they are merely a celebration of life
They can be a way to say goodbye
That’s wonderful and beautiful
Sometimes it is necessary for us
At the heart, funerals are PRAYERS FOR THOSE WHO HAVE DIED
How common do you think it is for someone to die and go straight to heaven?
Jesus said, “The road is wide that leads to hell and it is narrow that leads to heaven.”
If someone dies in God’s grace, that is amazing
WHAT A GIFT!!
The assumption that they don’t need our prayers because they’re in heaven right now is a bit premature
In all of our hearts at this moment there are things that we love more than we love God
They don’t have to be bad things
But there are things in our heart that we are attached to more than we are attached to God
Our hearts have to be purified by small loves so that the great love, the great commandment to love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength
How many of us do that right now?
Very very few of us, if any
THAT IS WHAT WE NEED TO HAVE!!
We need to have hearts that life the Lord our God with ALL OUR HEART, MIND, SOUL, AND STRENGTH
If we don’t, then Purgatory is this incredible gift of the Lord’s mercy that purifies our hearts so we can love God with ALL OUR HEART, MIND, SOUL, AND STRENGTH
The Mass assists in this and is efficacious
So PLEASE continue to pray for those souls who have died
DO NOT JUST PLACE THEM IN HEAVEN BECAUSE IT MIGHT NOT BE TRUE AND IT WON’T HELP THEM!!
You CAN help those you love by OFFERING UP PRAYERS FOR THEM and by having the holy sacrifice of the Mass being OFFERED FOR THEM as well
So today we pray for all the holy souls in Purgatory, those of our loved ones, our friends, our family, and those who have no one to pray for them
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT to see you tomorrow!!