Pastor’s Letter August 21, 2016: Significance of Communion
Our parish is truly blessed and fortunate to have the presence of Fr. John Madigan. Holy Rosary was his first assignment as a newly ordained priest. Fr. John is now a retired priest in residence here at Holy Rosary. He is helping out at our parish as well as other parishes in the Archdiocese. Fr. John will be doing some traveling in his retirement, so in the near future you will not see him around, pretty much from the end of this month until late November.
Communion is a very special time of the Mass. It is where we receive from the altar the sacred body and blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ. When we receive Communion the priest or minister says “The body of Christ” or “The blood of Christ” with the appropriate audible response of “Amen”, which is a Hebrew word meaning “I believe”.
Communion is what the word signifies: receiving Our Lord at Communion means we enter into a union/communion with Him and through Him, a communion with the greater “Body of Christ”, the Church, which is being united with the angels, the saints in heaven and the entire Church on earth. Therefore, there is a definite communal and very personal aspect to receiving Communion.
The time after Communion is normally when the Communion song is sung. It is also a time of “Sacred Silence” where we can personally bring ourselves to the Lord with all those we love and all our concerns. The instructions for posture after Communion are not as defined as they are with the rest of Mass and therefore allow flexibility for those who would wish to sit or kneel. This is especially true on Sundays when Communion time can go on for a while.