Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity have actually been preparing young people (and those not so young) to receive the Body and Blood of Jesus in Holy Communion for a long time. Community foundresses responded to the need of catechizing German immigrant children which no doubt included instructing God’s little ones in the sacraments of initiation.
Today at St. Francis of Assisi Parish, Manitowoc, WI, Sister Veronica Schad, OSF, witnessed and joyfully celebrated with First Communicants and their families. The young people, after being properly catechized, were welcomed at the Eucharistic table in one of the holiest and most important occasions in a Roman Catholic’s life.
Sister Veronica shared: “Teaching/preparing students for First Communion is a privilege. The beauty of seeing them receive Jesus for the first time is very impressive. The students are very eager, open and wanting to receive the Lord in the Eucharist. They know the Lord is closer to them in another way and can receive Him often.”
First Communion marks the day that children have studied and understood, to the best of their abilities, the mystery of transubstantiation, the changing of the substance of ordinary bread and wine into the substance of Christ’s body and blood. Communicants receive Holy Communion not once, but for the rest of their lives becoming one with Christ and sharing in His eternal life.
St. Francis of Assisi said:
…receive the most holy Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ with fervor in holy remembrance of Him.