Diocesan DYMAC team adds ‘Star Wars’ theme to presentation
By Will Brewer
Dr. Scott Hahn may travel across the world giving his widely followed talks, but you can bet he has never had an introduction like the one he received at the Eucharistic Congress from Diocese of Knoxville youth.
Dr. Hahn, whose backstory is highlighted by the fact he formerly was a Presbyterian minister before converting to Catholicism, was introduced by two members of the Diocesan Youth Ministry Advisory Council before more than 1,000 students and youth directors.
DYMAC members Kathleen Merriman and Monica Raymond presented Dr. Hahn in a Star Wars-themed introduction.
“Hahn used to be a Presbyterian but he finally realized that they were not the droids he was looking for,” the students said before introducing him as Dr. Scott Hahn-Solo.
Dr. Hahn, who was clearly amused, played along by responding, “help me Jesus Christ, you’re my only hope.”
The students said afterward that they were amazed at how nice Dr. Hahn was backstage and that such a famous speaker could be so humble.
All jokes aside, Dr. Hahn gave a rousing lecture to a ballroom full of youth about how important the Eucharist is to Catholics. In fact, it was his scriptural research of the Eucharist that proved to him that Catholicism had the only answer to forgiveness and redemption.
“The more research I did, the more everything kept coming up Catholic,” Dr. Hahn said, continuing to explain that the Church’s comparison of Old Testament and New Testament readings at every Mass was brilliant because it was exactly how the early Church fathers such as St. Augustine and St. Ambrose intended Scripture to be read.
Dr. Hahn went on to talk about the significance of the Holy Eucharist and its origins at the Last Supper.
“The Last Supper and Calvary are infused. If they’re not, the Last Supper is just a meal and Calvary is just an execution,” he said. “Jesus was not a victim of the Romans. He was a victim of divine love.”
Dr. Hahn later talked about how he was shocked that the Mass was a line-by-line reiteration of the Book of Revelation. He said the Mass is the closest thing we have to Heaven here on Earth.
He began his talk by offering an amusing anecdote about a time he got lost looking for Mercy Hospital. The solution was to “turn down Pride and you’ll find Mercy.”
“Sure enough, I turned down Pride Avenue and I found Mercy Hospital,” Dr. Hahn said, drawing laughs from the students as he explained that the directions could be used just as well in our own moral lives.
As Dr. Hahn began to discover that Catholicism was indeed the truth, he recalled that he found himself asking the same question the disciples asked themselves on the road to Emmaus, “was not my heart burning within me while He opened to me the Scripture?”
“But He was revealed to me in the breaking of the bread,” he responded, referencing his daily journeys to Mass.
Students attending Dr. Hahn’s talk were intrigued by his analysis of the Eucharist.
Logan Parsons, a sophomore who attends Knoxville Catholic High School, said he was fascinated by
Hahn’s explanations of Scripture and how those translations change to and from English.
“I thought it was interesting how different interpretations of the Bible are so different from the Scripture that we know,” Logan Parsons said.
Kathleen Merriman was in agreement with Logan’s assessment.
“The old is revealed in the new and the new is enlightened by the old,” she said, repeating one of Dr. Hahn’s key phrases.
Feeling a closer connection to Dr. Hahn and his remarks, DYMAC member Rachel Davis said his story reminded her of her father’s conversion.
“I liked how he connected the Church fathers and the Eucharist to his conversion because that is why my father converted, too,” she said.
The students attending Dr. Hahn’s lecture said they were intrigued by what they learned about the Eucharist, especially since the Eucharist was the focal point of the Eucharistic Congress and the reason they were in attendance. n