God desires an encounter with you. He longs for you and is waiting for you. You can grow in a relationship with Him and fall in love with Him.
This was Bishop Gruss' message during the Oct. 7 First Friday presentation at the Cathedral.
"Week after week, time and again, our hearts will be transformed and we will fall in love with Him in ways we can’t imagine," said Bishop Gruss about being open present while encountering the Lord at Mass.
Speaking on the gift of Mass, Bishop Gruss used an analogy to explain how each of us can grow closer to God in a way similar to how spouses grow closer to one another.
"What happened over time was, through these series of encounters where you were present to the other (mind and heart), communication took place in these encounters over time, and something changed in your heart so deeply that you thought, 'Wow, I think I'm falling in love!' Right? And, you continue to have these encounters because you acknowledge that there's something in my heart that's changed about this person."
Bishop Gruss then shared how our relationship with the Lord can develop similarly at Mass.
Seeking an encounter with the Lord
"We come to Mass seeking an encounter with the Lord and He desires us to be there (He’s already present – He’s waiting for us), and we’re present to Him, in both our mind and in our heart. In the Mass (in this prayer of thanksgiving), our communication to Him takes place through our participation."
Bishop Gruss stressed the importance of making effort to remain present at Mass similar to how people are present to one another in daily life.
"So what happens [at Mass]? Week after week, time and again, our hearts will be transformed and we will fall in love with Him in ways we can’t imagine. And not only that, we will experience His love in the Eucharist and in our own personal relationship outside of the Mass [in ways] that we can’t imagine."
"The Mass is the epitome of this dynamic of an encounter because it’s Jesus Himself (through the Father) giving Himself to us completely, His body, blood, soul and divinity," Bishop Gruss said.
"Don’t we think it’s important to be engaged and present to Him in mind and heart, time and time again so that we’ll fall more deeply in love with Him than we already are, so that we will experience His love more than we already have? He has so much more to give to us. But we have to be open to receive it."
"Bishop was putting words to what’s in my heart," said St. Brigid of Kildare, Midland, parishioner Rosemary Urban. "He was able to describe what I’ve experienced at Mass."
"Today was confirmation of my thinking that Church is a gift from God," said Rosemary's husband, Joe. "That’s why we come to these First Fridays, I’m trying to grow closer to the God of my understanding."
You are invited to the next First Friday gathering with Bishop Gruss. Click here for more information. Come grow in your relationship with the Lord. We hope to see you!
Save your spot and register now for First Friday on Nov. 4.
See Bishop Gruss' list of recommended books about the Eucharist
Learn more about the National Eucharistic Revival here.
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Full video of Bishop Gruss' talk at the Cathedral on Friday, Oct. 7
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