Saint Louis University

Fr. Dan White, S.J.



April 24, 2016

This weekend at the 10:30 am mass nineteen girls and boys will celebrate their First Communion. It is a wonderful day for our community as they will share for the first time Christ’s gift of Himself in the Eucharist. We welcome all the family and friends who are visiting for this special sacrament.

The celebration brings back happy memories. Since almost all of us were baptized as infants, it is our First Communion that is often our oldest church-related memory. You may recall the preparation, the moment of finally receiving communion, the party afterwards, and even what you wore. I know this well. Mine was in 1975 a particularly challenging period for fashion.

First Communion should be a primal memory for us as Catholics. Being fed and nourished by the Lord is a defining experience. The encounter with Christ, receiving His Body and Blood, has been the foundation of the Christian faith from the very beginning. It makes perfect sense for us to trace our earliest, conscious participation with Him to be the Eucharist.

The best of part of all is that it is a memory renewed every time we come to mass. What began long ago (for some of us, really long ago!) is deepened whenever we receive the Eucharist. It connects our past, present and future in Jesus Christ. The celebration of First Communion is not simply about making memories. It is about making Christians.