"Give the some food yourselves," (MARK 6:37) Jesus said. It was an extraordinary command, an impossible command.
At the miracle of the loaves, Jesus wanted to feed the multitude, and he commanded his disciples to give them something to eat. At the Last Supper he commanded those same disciples to eat and drink his body and blood. The extraordinary Minister (Eucharistic Minister) serves at the will of Christ and the Church to sanctify the people of God.
This ministry puts you at the center of the Church's life. The celebration of the Eucharist on the Lord's Day is our most important activity. We gather on the day of the Resurrection to express our belief in eternal life. We listen to the word of God. We give thanks for life and salvation.
At Mass some people will bring the bread and wine to the sanctuary so that the priest may take it. All of us pray silently with him while he blesses it. We reflect on the community we share and the sacrifice we make as he breaks it and pours it. And you will help him as he gives it to the people.
When faithful believers participate at Mass, they look forward to receiving Holy Communion. You will be there. You will be a servant of Christ fulfilling his will to feed the hungry, by giving them something to eat and drink.
You already know the importance of Mass and Holy Communion. The Eucharist sums up our beliefs: that there is a God, that God's Word took flesh in Jesus, that the Holy Spirit continues to guide the Church, that God speaks to us through the scriptures that Jesus worked miracles, that he gave us his body and blood on that night before he died, and that he rose from the dead on the third day. When we gather for the Eucharist as the body of Christ, we place our lives in God's hands. We respond in faith to the revelation we have received.
In the Mass, God sanctifies the world in Christ, and humanity worships the Father through the Son in the Holy Spirit.
The diversity of ministers is essential to the fruitful celebration of the Mass. All of the faithful are summoned to a "full, conscious, and active participation" that burns with faith, hope, and charity, by reason of their Baptism.
The Church depends on Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion for this purpose. They fulfill one of the ministries that helps the proper arrangement of the Mass. When all the ministers fulfill their functions with individual intergrity in service to the whole, the mystery of the Eucharist is revealed more clearly.
Your love for Christ draws you to the Eucharist. Your love for the Church draws you to liturgical service. As an extraordinary minister, you are integral to the sacramental sharing that is the highlight of the Mass.
Eucharistic Ministers may be called upon to bring the Eucharist to temporarily home bound parishioners who may be, temporarily, unable to participate, in the Parish liturgical celebrations, due to aging, illness or hospital recuperation.
All Eucharistic Ministers are trained and commissioned in this ministry. If you are willing to serve in this way, please contact Fr. James Vacco ofm at the parish office.