Communion and Baseball


“So, while the gospels of Matthew and Mark were giving nourishment to my soul, the feats of Mays and McCovey were taking hold of my heart.  It was not easy to know what held more meaning for me as a youth:  my first Communion or my first major league baseball game.  Both were spiritual experiences.

Communion made me eligible to receive the major league sacrament of the Catholic Church, ingesting the bread transformed into the body of Christ just as Jesus ordained during the Last Supper on the night before his death….Communion and baseball, I was just happy to be there.  I had no deep understanding of either…Since then I have grown to appreciate their intricacies, subtleties, profundities, and, even their commonalities.  In the intervening years, I have struggled with my faith and at times the direction of baseball.  Yet, both continue to have a hold on me, tugging at something deep inside.  I keep returning.  Each has taught me lessons about love, loss, and life.  Each has its own rewards, its version of universal truth.  Each reveals a wondrous glimpse into what it is to be human.”

from “And God Said, ‘Play Ball!’ ” by Gary Graf, Jack Zehrt pp 1-4