An incident is told of a seminarian who was guiding a group of tourists in St Peter’s Basilica, Vatican.
These tourists were quite clueless about the Catholic Faith…
… and so paid great interest to what was being told by the seminarian-guide.
The seminarian had explained with great care about the masterpieces of art, sculpture and architecture in this magnificent basilica.
Finally, he concluded the tour of the Basilica at the Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament in the Basilica…
…. and tried to quickly explain What It was.
One of the elderly persons in the group who had paid a special attention to all the details, said:
“Pardon me! Would you please explain What is This ‘Blessed Sacrament’?”
The seminarian did.
At the end of it, the man, falling on his knees, exclaimed: “Ah! If this is so, then this Chapel where God Truly Lives, is the greater work than any other art in this entire Basilica!”
Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is indeed the Most Important Treasure on this world.
> Have we discovered this Spectacular Truth?
>> Are we passionate about this Awesome Gift?
Today we solemnly celebrate the Great Feast of the Corpus Christi – the Body and Blood of Jesus.
The Catechism of the Church teaches, “In the Most Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist, the body and blood, together with the soul and divinity, of our Lord Jesus Christ and, therefore, the whole Christ is truly, really, and substantially contained” (#1374).
On the night of the Last Supper, Jesus with His chosen disciples, celebrated the Passover Meal, taking the bread and wine, solemnly declaring, “This is my Body” (Mk 14: 22) and “This is my Blood” (Mk 14: 24)
The following day, Jesus would carry out this sacrifice of offering Himself for the expiation of the sins of the world, on Mount Calvary.
The Holy Sacrifice of the Eucharist is the perpetual continuation and adoration of the sacrifice of Calvary.
• The Holy Mass is not another sacrifice.
• The Holy Mass is not a repetition of the sacrifice of Calvary.
• The Priest at the Holy Mass is not offering a different sacrifice.
• The Holy Mass is the same sacrifice of Jesus.
• The Holy Mass is the perpetual continuation and adoration of the sacrifice of Calvary.
• The Priest at the Holy Mass is Jesus Himself, the High Priest and Victim of the Sacrifice.
What is our understanding, love and commitment to the Holy Mass?
In the Holy Eucharist, we have the promise of the Emmanuel God, “I am with you always, till the end of the age” (Mt 28: 20) being fulfilled.
We live in times when…
… there is a lot of indifference growing
… there are several newer problems and crisis cropping up
We live in a situation of faith where…
… there is a tendency to dilute many of the spiritual values
… there is a strong opposition to living holy and sanctified lives
In all such struggling moments and trying situations, we have an answer and solution in the Holy Eucharist.
The Eucharist is the story of a God who longs to dwell with us and in us.
>> The Eucharist is the saga of a God who is madly and passionately in love with us.
From the Cross, our Blessed Lord cried, “I thirst” (Jn 19: 28b)
>> Shall we not respond, with a positive affirmation, to this cry of the Lord?
It’s also good to quickly go through some “unnoticed” parts of the Holy Mass – and realize its significance, in order to understand and love the Holy Mass, more deeply and devoutly.
THE INTRODUCTORY RITE:
The Opening Prayer:
>> Called as the ‘Collect’, this prayer, gathers together all the intentions, and unites with the prayer of the High Priest, Jesus Himself.
An action to do: Use the moment of silent, to bring before the Lord all intentions and prayers
LITURGY OF THE WORD:
Signing ourselves on the forehead, lips and the chest
>> We seek His Help to cleanse our minds, lips & hearts, that we may worthily receive Jesus, the Word into our lives!
An Action to do: Use the moment, to truly have clean thoughts (mind), sincere words (lips) and honest feelings and deeds (heart)
a. The Offering of Bread and Wine
>> The Gifts, represent fruits of our labour. As the gifts, we pray, that we too be changed into His Body and Blood.
An Action to do: Use to moment, to offer our entire life to the Lord – just as we are – with all our situations, struggles, aspirations and hopes.
b. The mingling of a drop of water in the wine by the Priest
>> The water represents, our littleness, which is totally mingled with the wine, signifying, our intention to be one with the Divine Lord
An Action to do: Use the moment, to sincerely wanting to be united with the Lord and becoming more and more like Him!
c. The washing of the hands
>> The Priest – the representative of the People of God, cleanses himself and prepares, for the Most Holy Sacrifice of Calvary.
An Action to do: Use the moment, to repent of our sins and praying earnestly, never to fall into sin again!
a. Lift up your hearts
Our minds and hearts need to transcend our human worries, concerns and troubles, and be raised in heavenly contemplation
An Action to do: Use the moment, to ascend to the heights of glory, in order to recognise and be united to the Will of God in our lives.
The Church enlists (as per the Liturgical Season or the theme) the various ways in which the Lord has worked in human history. We (the Church Militant), seeking intercession for the Faithful Departed (the Church Suffering) join the beautiful choir of the saints and angels (the Church Triumphant) and angels, singing Holy Holy, Holy to the Most High God!
An Action to do: Use this moment of intense praise and Divine worship, to be longing to possess Heaven and to be filled with the radiance of this joy in this world.
THE COMMUNION RITE
>> The portion where the power of the Holy Spirit is invoked, so that the gifts of bread and wine, may be transformed into Divine Species.
An Action to do: Use this moment, to pray for the infilling of the Holy Spirit, that His Power may overshadow us
A small piece of the host is mingled with the Sacred Wine
>> Signifying the unity of the Body and Blood of the Lord pointing symbolising Resurrection, and also the Unity of the Body of Christ, the Church.
An Action to do: Use this moment, to pray for the grace to share in His Resurrection and to love the Church and be thankful for our Catholic Faith
THE HOLY COMMUNION
A moment when heaven touches the earth…when the Divine lowers itself to embrace the fallen Humanity, to raise it up to Divine status…
An Action to do: Use this moment, to be totally absorbed in the mighty ocean of God’s Mercy and experiencing the consummation of His Divine Love!
THE RITE OF THE DISMISSAL
We are asked to be the Eucharist to one another – breaking ourselves, in service!
An Action to do: Use this moment to pledge to be a True Missionary, giving His Love to all – in the little way, that we can!
There is nothing more beautiful on this earth, than the Celebration of the Holy Eucharist – the Holy Mass!
>> As Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI says: “The Eucharist is our most precious treasure… it contains all the mystery of our Salvation!”
Let us truly “Experience and Enjoy the Eucharist!”
May we grow in the love of the Holy Eucharist, for, as Bishop Fulton Sheen says, “The greatest love story of all time is contained in a tiny white Host”!
Wish you a very Happy Feast of the Holy Eucharist!
>> May our Blessed Mamma of the Holy Eucharist, help & intercede for us, to love the Lord more!
God Bless! Live Jesus!