Catholic students from several college campuses spent a recent Saturday morning focused on the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.
On September 24, more than two dozen young adults from various campuses gathered with Bishop Ronald Gainer at St. Patrick Cathedral in Harrisburg for a Holy Hour, followed by a presentation on the Eucharist. The event was coordinated by the Catholic Campus Ministry at York College, spurred on by the momentum of various monthly Zoom sessions of fellowship that have been hosted by various campuses over the past several years.
The gathering gave the students a morning of prayer and reflection focused on the Eucharist, and offered an occasion to make connections across campuses and with members of the Diocesan Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry, who were also present for the event.
“Being in college is not easy; there are many obligations, distractions and activities throughout the year. Being able to start the school year with students from other colleges and with our bishop was very meaningful. It reinforces that even if we are in different places, we are all together, joined in unity through and with Jesus. It is support and accountability,” said Ileana Feistritzer, Associate Director of Catholic Campus Ministry at York College.
Since 2018, the Catholic Campus Ministry at York College has been offering Holy Hours every Sunday during the school year. “It has helped our students recognize Jesus present in the Eucharist and understand that it is the soul of our Church. Having Eucharistic Adoration with the bishop was the perfect event to start our semester,” Feistritzer said.
She spoke of the students’ hunger to know Jesus and spend time with Him, and said they were particularly interested to hear from the bishop about how to convey the meaning of transubstantiation with those who aren’t Catholic.
“These young adults are an inspiration,” Feistritzer said. “Knowing that they could choose to do anything else, and they all want the same: to spend time with Jesus, grow in understanding, be faithful to His word and share the faith with other students right where they are.”
(Photo courtesy of the Diocesan Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministry.)
By Jen Reed, The Catholic Witness