The Mystical Union With Christ



A retreat is scheduled every three years for all bishops of the USCCB. As I write, bishops have gathered in San Diego and we are in the second day of that retreat. It is a time for bishops in communion to listen to the Holy Spirit, to reflect on our episcopal mission, and to grow in fraternal charity. Our leader for the retreat is the Most Reverend Anthony Fisher O.P., Archbishop of Sydney, Australia.

As desired and prayed for in any spiritual retreat, the mind, body and spirit is given time to grow deeper in the love of Christ. With all the upheaval in the world, this is a providential time for deeper prayer. As a bishop, I know the difficulties of following the path of perfection. That path is found only through mystical union with Jesus Christ, in grace, charity and holiness. Please hear my desire that this mystical union be brought to greater fulfillment in me and in my brother bishops, in our diocese and our world. Pray for us bishops, that we encounter the risen Christ through His Spirit in our spiritual retreat of prayer this week.


"Please hear my desire that this mystical union be brought to greater fulfillment in me and in my brother bishops, in our diocese and our world."

On this coming Sunday, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, the national three-year Eucharistic Revival will begin with solemn celebrations across the United States. In the traditional processions of Corpus Christi we will proclaim our Catholic mission as Intentional Disciples of Jesus Christ. It is a time for us to pray as people of faith, to repent and to reconcile whatever separates us from His Real Presence, the Eucharist. This is the source and summit of what makes us Catholic, a gift unique to our universal faith.

We are all in need of reconciliation. The path to eternal life, in mystical union with Christ, begins always in repentance. In order to be granted the true, mystical union of Christ in the Eucharist, the grace of a periodic sacramental confession is needed. The unique presence of Christ is given here, too, in the presence of the priest, that sins be forgiven and the path of perfection be straightened and renewed.


"It is a time for us to pray as people of faith, to repent and to reconcile whatever separates us from His Real Presence, the Eucharist."

Know that you are in my prayers, with all our families, parishes and missions, through this week of my retreat. As we prepare to begin our Eucharistic Revival, may we all pray to seek the grace of renewal for ourselves, our Diocese and our Church in the Real Presence of Our Lord, Jesus Christ.


Sincerely yours in Christ,


+Most Reverend Stephen J. Berg

Bishop of Pueblo



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