“St. Teresa of Avila once marveled at the vulnerability of Our Lord in the Eucharist. One might be overcome by the chance to meet a king, said St. Teresa. However, it should never be forgotten that the King of the Universe has made Himself available to us at all times, in every Catholic church. In every chapter of the story of salvation, Our Lord seeks us out and draws ever closer to us, to be with us in the most radical way in the Eucharist.
Today (Solemnity of the Body of Christ) as we revel in the unabashed love that the Lord pours on us through His true presence in the Eucharist, let us pray about how we allow this Holy Communion to transform our interactions with each other.”
(From The Great Gift of the Eucharist by Rev. Mr. Omar Gutierrez)
|(Image Source: Wikimedia Commons)|
For several months now, at Sunday Mass, I have noticed that a middle-aged gentleman quickly walks out of the Church as soon as the congregation begins to approach the altar to receive Holy Communion. He leaves before anyone who might be inclined to approach or speak to him, is able to do so. I do not know why he will not approach our Lord; there could be countless reasons. Maybe he simply does not believe that it is Jesus he is walking away from.
To date, all I have done is to pray for him.
However, after Mass today, I read an article written by Father Denis Lemieux, entitled “Who Will Be Saved?” This thought-provoking column appeared in the July-August 2018 issue of Restoration, the newspaper published by Madonna House.
The good Father offers, what I consider, a possible explanation for this man’s reluctance to receive Communion that shook my soul and made it quite clear I must offer this man much more than my prayers.
Here is the relevant excerpt from his article:
Pondering Tidbits of Truth is my simple and inadequate way of providing nuggets of spiritual wisdom for you to chew on from time to time.
"Christian prayer is above all about love, and therefore first and foremost it is about learning to love a person. Just as in human love, the more you love and are loved by another, then the more you forget yourself. The joy that you experience is the result or the by-product of loving and being loved. If you seek it for itself, you will lose it, if you find it in the first place. The moment that love is turned into its counterfeit is the moment when selfishness desecrates the only thing that makes life worth living. Christian prayer begins by getting to know Jesus Christ, as the first disciples came to know him, and love him, and then through his love, entered into him."
(From Wisdom of Christian Mystics - How To Pray The Christian Way)
"There are only two kids of men: the righteous who think they are sinners and the sinners who think that they are righteous."
St. Vincent Ferrer
“Make it your constant effort to mortify and trample underfoot your own will, to such a degree as not to satisfy it in anything if it be possible. Be careful, therefore, to desire and rejoice that it may be often crossed; and when you see anyone oppose it either in temporal or spiritual things, follow his will rather than your own, if only his be good, even though your own be better.”
(From A Treatise on the Spiritual Life)