Today’s External Solemnity of the Feast of Corpus Christi has an added unction. Our Archbishop Cardinal Sean has proclaimed the next twelve months a special “Year of the Eucharist” for the Archdiocese of Boston. It is an opportunity for us to intensify our Catholic faith-belief in the Miracle of Christ’s Real Presence in the consecrated Bread and Wine of the Holy Eucharist through prayer, devotion, and on-going instruction.

It is no secret at all that a great many professed Catholics are unlearned in what the Church actually teaches about the “Mystery of Faith”, the Holy Eucharist. They either understand it in a very confused and even contradictory way; or they refuse the orthodox belief altogether substituting for it a “Jesus-is-present-for-me” variety of expression. But let us be honest—how can the lay faithful be expected to internalize the Catholic doctrine of the Holy Eucharist when so many priests do not act as if they have internalized it either?

The Holy Eucharist is an objective reality, even if it requires the grace of faith for an individual to grasp it. If the conditions for validity set forth by the Church are met (valid matter, valid minister, sufficient intention) then the living Jesus Christ is present— “Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity”— under the appearances of the consecrated Bread and Wine. If any one of these conditions for validity is not met, then the living Christ is not present in the Holy Eucharist, no matter how much we might wish it to be so. The bread is only bread, and the wine is only wine.  

Let us begin this Eucharistic Holy Year as a parish community with a desire to learn and learn-again the “Mystery of Faith”, the Mysterium Fidei. Let us begin by entering into the spirit of this prayer entitled A Short Visit to the Blessed Sacrament Before Meditation composed by St. John Henry Cardinal Newman. It is a prayer which expresses most beautifully and succinctly what the Catholic faith means by the Real Presence








About Our Parish

Mary Immaculate of Lourdes is Newton and Needham Massachusetts's oldest Roman Catholic Parish. Founded as Saint Mary's Parish in 1870 it was renamed "Mary Immaculate of Lourdes" when the new Church was dedicated on Thanksgiving Day, 1910. In addition to being a regular territorial parish of the Archdiocese of Boston it is also a "Mission Parish" since 2007 with a special apostolate for the Traditional Latin Mass (1962 Missal).

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"If you are willing to serenely bear the trial of being displeasing to yourself, then you will be for Jesus a pleasant place of shelter."
- St. Therese of Lisieux (+1897)

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