Archdiocese Local

EWTN television and radio host to offer series of talks in Topeka on Dec. 3

Father Mitch Pacwa, SJ, best known as a host on EWTN television and radio, will speak about the Eucharist during a daylong free event on Dec. 3.

by Marc and Julie Anderson

TOPEKA – Bethlehem.

In Hebrew, the name translates to “house of bread.”

Marcia Bahret, a member of Mother Teresa of Calcutta Parish in north Topeka, said somehow the translation seems appropriate, since Jesus is “the living bread come down from heaven” and that he was placed in a manger, or a feeding trough, for livestock.

Additionally, she hopes people will reflect on those ideas during a daylong free event on Dec. 3, when Father Mitch Pacwa, SJ, best known as a host on EWTN television and radio, speaks about the Eucharist.

Father Mitch Pacwa

The event will start with a rosary at 8:30 a.m., followed by Mass at 9 a.m. in the church. After Mass, Father Pacwa will give a series of talks drawing upon the Catechism of the Catholic Church as well as the Old and New Testaments.

Sponsored by the parish and Knights of Columbus Council 534, the day will conclude at 3 p.m. Participants who register prior to Nov. 18 will have the opportunity to purchase lunch. Additionally, books and religious articles will be available for sale, and a freewill offering will be taken up. Those who sign up for the event are encouraged to bring a Bible.

Planning for the event began more than a year ago when Linda and Ray King, friends of Father Pacwa and the in-laws of Bahret’s daughter Marisa, visited Kansas, staying with Bahret and her family.

After Mass that weekend, Bahret and Linda King, Father Pacwa’s event manager, approached the parish’s pastor Father Tom Aduri about inviting Father Pacwa.

Bahret said she’s hopeful everyone who attends, regardless of their knowledge of the church’s teaching, will grow in their love and understanding of the Eucharist from the experience.

“Inasmuch as people are fearful or uncertain about their path, if they can turn to Jesus in the Eucharist, they will find the peace and purpose and serenity they’re seeking,” she said.

Father Pacwa agreed, adding that since around 1968 there has been an emphasis on the Eucharist as “some sort of event for the community to get together and share,” but that’s “only one part of our eucharistic teaching.”

“I want people to see something much more than that,” he said.

Father Pacwa plans to look at “the two elements of eucharistic teaching that are most neglected —  namely,  the Real Presence and the sacrificial nature of the Mass” — and hopefully instill or rekindle in those who attend his talks “a sense of the wonder of the Eucharist.”

For more information or to register, visit the parish’s website at:

About the author

Marc & Julie Anderson

Freelancers Marc and Julie Anderson are long-time contributors to the Leaven. Married in 1996, for several years the high school sweethearts edited The Crown, the former newspaper of Christ the King Parish in Topeka which Julie has attended since its founding in 1977. In 2000, the Leaven offered the couple their first assignment. Since then, the Andersons’ work has also been featured in a variety of other Catholic and prolife media outlets. The couple has received numerous journalism awards from the Knights of Columbus, National Right to Life and the Catholic Press Association including three for their work on “Think It’s Not Happening Near You? Think Again,” a piece about human trafficking. A lifelong Catholic, Julie graduated from Most Pure Heart of Mary Grade School and Hayden Catholic High School in Topeka. Marc was received into the Catholic Church in 1993 at St. Paul Parish – Newman Center at Wichita State University. The two hold degrees from Washburn University in Topeka. Their only son, William James, was stillborn in 1997.

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