Being Church Here & Now
Community is essential to us as Christians. We are the Body of Christ, and we know that when two or more gather in Jesus’ name, he is present with us. Furthermore, communion - in the reception of the Blessed Sacrament and in the Sunday Assembly - is the source and summit of the Catholic identity.
So things like social distancing, self-quarantine, containment measures, suspension of the Mass, etc. can be hard on our faith life. As Pope Francis said the other day, "It can feel kind of extreme." So what should we do.
Here are a few suggestions for nurturing our individual and communal lives of faith in a time of pandemic.
TIP: Our parish app includes an Act of Spiritual Commu-nion under the Prayers button
Bishop Rhoades encourage each of us to make an act of “spiritual communion,” especially on Sundays. Saint Thomas Aquinas defined “spiritual communion” as “an ardent desire to receive Jesus in the Holy Sacrament and a loving embrace as though we had already received Him.” And St. Theresa of Avila wrote, “When you cannot receive Communion and cannot attend Mass, you can make a spiritual communion, which is a most beneficial practice; by it the love of God will be greatly impressed on you.”
Here is St. Alphonse Ligouri's Prayer of Spiritual Communion:
My Jesus, I believe that you are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love you above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least into my heart. I embrace You as if you were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.
Mass "On the Air"
TIP: Our parish app has a direct link button to several daily Masses, including with Bp. Rhoades
There are many Masses on television, radio, live streamed, otherwise available on the internet. Although an electronic Mass is not the same thing as "live", when you cannot get to a regular Mass, it can be a very good support for your spiritual communion, as described above.
Here are some resources:
Livestream Mass with Bishop Kevin Rhoades - for as long as the crisis lasts, our bishop will live stream a Mass every Sunday at 10:00. You can participate over FaceBook or YouTube. Link
Mass from Notre Dame University Basilica, South Bend
Mass with Bishop Robert Barron, Los Angeles, California
Mass from EWTN
Santa Misa en español de la Universidad de Notre Dame en South Bend, Indiana
Santa Misa en español de San Fernando, California
Does "TV Mass" count? An article