Everyone is welcomed to our Catholic church. We want to be a loving and welcoming community. However, when I do a wedding mass or a funeral mass, I like to remind to everyone that if someone is not Catholic or doesn’t practice the faith, or for any reason can’t receive Holy Communion, they should cross his or her hands on their chest and ask for a blessing. One time that offended someone and she came to me and said that everyone should be invited to receive Holy Communion. Well, Jesus indeed welcomes everyone, but if a person doesn’t believe in what we believe, especially in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, there is no reason for him or her to go to Communion. You wouldn’t give something that is very precious to you to someone who doesn’t value that thing at all. Why? Today Jesus reminds us: “Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces.” I know those are very harsh words, but they come from Jesus. The Eucharist for us is like that pearl; we should treasure it. And I never refuse to give Communion to anyone who comes to receive it, because I never know what is happening in their hearts. But I like to remind others how precious the Eucharist is for us.
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