Celebrating and receiving the Eucharist or Holy Communion is the third of the Sacraments of Initiation. The word Eucharist comes from the Greek word for thanksgiving; we are giving thanks to God for all gifts, and especially the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ. During the Mass, we gather as God’s daughters and sons around the table of the Word (the proclamation of the Word of God) and the table of the Lord (the altar). During the Eucharistic Prayer, the bread and wine, gifts made of human hands but given to us through God’s actions, are given back to God in thanksgiving and become the Body and Blood of Christ. Through the reception of the Body and Blood of Christ, we are intimately united with Jesus, Our Lord and Savior, as well as being connected in a new way to all the other persons gathered for the Mass. We are then sent out to BE the Body of Christ as we bring the presence of the Lord to those we encounter in the world.
Normally, children of our parish, who have already been baptized, begin faith formation either through a program offered for the very young, or at least in the first grade and will celebrate the sacraments of Confirmation first Eucharist (Holy Communion) and during the following year. It is expected that their faith formation will continue on throughout the rest of their lives as their parents continue to make real that commitment they made at the child’s baptism “to bring him/her up in the Catholic faith.”
Children and adults who wish to receive Holy Communion but have not yet been baptized, or wish to join the Catholic Church are encouraged to contact the parish for information regarding the RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults).