Reflecting on the importance of the Eucharist to our faith, Deacon Tom Liotta recalls a key passage from the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
“The Eucharist is the ‘source and summit’ of our faith,” Deacon Tom says. “It is the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ, and it is our responsibility, by virtue of our Baptism, to share it with every Catholic within our geographical boundaries.”
With this in mind, Deacon Tom says he felt a particular pull to help coordinate the efforts of our Communion to the Homebound Ministry. He stepped up after the COVID-19 lockdowns when none of us could celebrate Mass or receive Communion. He says the reality that we were all without Communion illuminated for him the need that our homebound Catholics have on a regular basis.
“After the COVID restrictions were lifted, I had a real desire to do something,” Deacon Tom says. “I wanted to get Communion brought to the homebound as regularly as we could, and I wanted to get the laity involved. So, I began coordinating the ministry.”
Today, our Communion to the Homebound Ministry regularly brings Communion to a number of local nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and many individual Catholics who live at home and cannot get to Mass. The ministry members serve Brookside and Castle Care nursing homes, as well as the Red Hawk Assisted Living facility, to name just a few.
“There are many residents at these homes who are a part of our Catholic family,” Deacon Tom says. “It is our responsibility to bring Christ to them.”
It doesn’t stop there! In addition to the many homebound Catholics that these Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion currently serve, Deacon Tom says he knows there are more, and he encourages us to reach out if we or someone we know is homebound and would like Communion.
“If there is a need, please reach out — we are always ready and willing to serve,” Deacon Tom says. “I know there is a need, and all you need to do is call the office. We will get you or someone you know put on the schedule immediately. Reach out to the homebound first and make sure they would like us to come, and then simply call the parish office.”
What’s more, Deacon Tom says it’s not just those they serve that are blessed by this ministry. He says that he knows both he and the many EMHC who serve the homebound in this capacity are blessed beyond measure every time they bring Communion to the homebound.
“The relationships this ministry creates between us and the homebound we serve are priceless,” Deacon Tom says. “Sometimes we are the only connection someone has to the church, and bringing Christ to them is a tremendous blessing. In addition, serving the homebound in this way often enables us to recognize other needs they have and bring them to light. For example, when someone is dying and needs last rite, we are often able to let Father know.”
Needless to say, this group of Eucharistic Ministers — both Ordinary and Extraordinary — serve as the hands and feet of Christ in a very real way for the sick and the dying of today. Jesus may not walk among them physically like He did over 2,000 years ago, but our Eucharistic Ministers to the Homebound are doing their best to ensure they are still touched by Christ’s physical presence.
Christ is here for you! And we want to ensure you have ready access to Him!
If you or someone you know is homebound and would like to receive Communion, please contact the parish office at 303-688-3025.