Fr. René Butler MS - 7th Sunday of Easter -...
Making it Known (7th Sunday of Easter: Acts 7:55-60; Revelation 22:12-20; John 17:20-26) Most people cannot recite the whole message of Our Lady of La Salette, but they always remember the beginning: “Come closer, my children, don’t be afraid,” and... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 6th Sunday of Easter -...
Keeping it Simple (6th Sunday of Easter: Acts 15:1-2 and 22-29; Rev. 21:10-23; John 13:23-29) Compared to Lourdes and Fatima, the message of Our Lady of La Salette is long and appears complex. Still, it is basically quite simple. In the early Church, as described... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 5th Sunday of Easter -...
Wiping away Every Tear (5th Sunday of Easter: Acts 14:21-27; Revelation 21:1-5; John 13:31-35) When we see someone crying, our first instinct is, often, to wonder what is the matter and, perhaps not often enough, to wonder whether we can or should do something to... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 4th Sunday of Easter - Why...
Why Don’t they Get it? (4th Sunday of Easter: Acts 13: 14, 43-52; Revelation 7:9-17; John 10:27-30) Have you ever had the experience of knowing something to be true but being unable to convince others? To you it is perfectly clear, but everyone looks at you as... Czytaj więcej
Fr. René Butler MS - 3rd Sunday of Easter -...
Guilty as Charged? (3rd Sunday of Easter: Acts 5:27-41; Revelation 5:11-14; John 21:1-19) A question often quoted in Christian sermons asks, “If you were accused of being a Christian, would they find enough evidence to convict you?” The Apostles, in... Czytaj więcej
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Fr. René Butler MS - 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time - Food for the Journey

Food for the Journey

(19th Sunday in Ordinary Time: 1 Kings 12:4-8; Eph. 4:30—5:2; John 6:41-51)

The Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick used to be called Extreme Unction. Today, Catholics understand that the sacrament is in view of healing, not death. There are, however, certain rites to be observed when death is imminent.

Among these is Viaticum. The Latin word originally meant provisions (money, food, etc.) for a journey. In the Church, it refers to Holy Communion brought to a dying person. The Catechism of the Catholic Church describes it in these terms: “Communion in the body and blood of Christ, received at this moment of ‘passing over’ to the Father, has a particular significance and importance. It is the seed of eternal life and the power of resurrection, according to the words of the Lord: ‘He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.’”

When Elijah was discouraged and wanted to die, God provided food for his journey, to strengthen him and help him continue his prophetic mission.

The message of Our Lady of La Salette was addressed to “her people” who, among other things, paid little importance to the Eucharist. Not only had the Church in general suffered from the persecutions of the French Revolution, but even before that, anticlericalism had entered deeply into French culture as a result of the Age of Enlightenment.

In that context, “Taste and see how good the Lord is” would find little resonance. “Only a few elderly women” took it seriously, it seems.

And yet, there is something about the Beautiful Lady and her message that has touched even the most hardened hearts. Maximin’s father, originally hostile to the Apparition, came to understand God’s love, and afterward went to Mass every day. His conversion was due to an episode in his life which involved bread, and of which Mary had reminded Maximin.

St. Paul writes: “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with which you were sealed for the day of redemption.” Yes, the practice of faith has always faced challenges, but it is especially difficult in secular cultures.

So, we all need Christ’s food for the journey. It’s not just for the dying; it strengthens all of us to go on.

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