"And according as we say, "Our Father," because He is The Father of those who understand and believe; so also we call it "our Bread," because Christ is The Bread of those who are in union with His Body. And we ask that this Bread should be given to us daily, that we who are in Christ, and daily receive The Eucharist for the Food of Salvation, may not by the interposition of some heinous sin...be separated from Christ's Body."
- St. Cyprian (210?-258)
When we say "Give us this day our daily bread," by "this day" we mean "at this time," when we either ask for that sufficiency, signifying the whole of our need under the name of bread, which is the outstanding part of it, or for the sacrament of the faithful, which is necessary at this time for attaining not so much this temporal as that eternal happiness."
- St. Augustine
"It is happiness to be in heaven, no doubt, because it is to be with Jesus; but have we not almost the same happiness here? Do we not possess Him in the Most Holy Sacrament? Did we but know how to profit by His Divine Presence, we should in some way have no reason to envy the inhabitants of the Heavenly City."
- Marie Estelle Harpain (1814-1842)
Our Lord Jesus said to His disciples: "I am The Way, The Truth and The Life. Nobody can come to the Father except through Me. If you had recognized Me, you would have recognized My Father too. And from now on you will recognize Him, since you have seen Him." Philip said to Him: "Lord, show us the Father and it is enough for us." Jesus said to him: "Have I been so long a time with you and you have not learned who I am? Philip whoever sees Me, sees My Father too" (Jn. 14, 6-9).
Now, the Father dwells in light that cannot be penetrated (1 Tim. 6,16), and God is a spirit (Jn. 4, 24), and nobody has ever seen God (Jn 1, 18). Because God is a spirit, therefore He can be seen only by means of the spirit, for it is the spirit that gives life, where as the flesh is of no avail (Jn. 6, 64).
But since the Son is like the Father, he too is seen by nobody otherwise than the Father is seen or otherwise than the Holy Spirit is seen. And so it was that those who saw our Lord Jesus Christ only in a human way and did not see nor believe that He was the true Son of God, as the spirit and his Divine nature demand - they all stood condemned.
And so now with all those who see the Blessed Sacrament, sanctified by our Lord's words on the altar, through the hands of the priest, in the form of bread and wine: if they do not see and believe, as the spirit and the Divine nature demand that it is truly the most holy Body and Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, they stand condemned. For it is the Most High who bears witness to it. He says, "This is My Body, and the Blood of the New Testament" (Mk, 14, 22-24) and, "He who eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood, has life everlasting." (Jn. 6, 55)
- from the writings of St. Francis of Assisi on The Blessed Sacrament
"Prayer is the best preparation for Holy Communion. Prayer is the raising of the mind to God. When we pray we go to meet Christ Who is coming to us. If our Creator and Savior comes from heaven with such great love, it is only fitting that we should go to meet Him. And this is what we do when we spend some time in prayer."
- St. Bernadine of Siena (1380-1444)
Do you know what Mass is? In the Church it is what the sun in our world, it is the soul of our faith, the center of our religion, the end and center of all the ceremonies, rites and sacraments. In a word it is the summary of all that is beautiful and good in the Church of God."
- St. Leonard of Port Maurice (1676-1751)
"In each of our lives Jesus comes as the Bread of Life - to be eaten, to be consumed by us. This is how He loves us. Then Jesus comes in our human life as the hungry one, the other, hoping to be fed with the Bread of our life, our hearts by loving, and our hands by serving. In loving and serving, we prove that we have been created in the likeness of God, for God is Love and when we love we are like God. This is what Jesus meant when He said, "Be perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect."
- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
"And just as He appeared before the holy Apostles in true flesh, so now He has us see Him in the Sacred Bread. Looking at Him with the eyes of their flesh, they saw only His Flesh, but regarding Him with the eyes of the spirit, they believed that He was God. In like manner, as we see bread and wine with our bodily eyes, let us see and believe firmly that it is His Most Holy Body and Blood, True and Living.
For in this way our Lord is ever present among those who believe in him, according to what He said: "Behold, I am with you all days even to the consummation of the world." (Mt. 28, 20)
- St. Francis of Assisi
"The humility of Jesus can be seen in the crib, in the exile to Egypt, in the hidden life, in the inability to make people understand Him, in the desertion of His apostles, in the hatred of His persecutors, in all the terrible suffering and death of His Passion, and now in His permanent state of humility in the tabernacle, where He has reduced Himself to such a small particle of bread that the priest can hold Him with two fingers. The more we empty ourselves, the more room we give God to fill us."
- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
"Thus it is the spirit of the Lord, which dwells in those who believe in Him, that truly receives the most Holy Body and Blood of our Lord. All the rest, who have nothing of that spirit and presume to receive Him, eat and drink judgment to themselves (1 Cor. 11,29)
So, you children of men, how long is your sense going to stay dull? (Ps 4,3) Why do you not see in the truth and believe in the Son of God? (Jn. 9, 35) See, day after day He humbles Himself, as when He came down from His royal throne. (Wis. 18, 15) into the Virgin's womb. Day by day He comes to us personally in this lowly form. Daily He comes down from the bosom of His Father on the altar into the hands of the priest."
- from the writings of St. Francis of Assisi
Prayer of our Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, inaugurating Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration at St. Peter's at the beginning of Advent 1981:
Lord stay with us. These words were spoken for the first time by the disciples of Emmaus. Subsequently in the course of the centuries they have been spoken, an infinite number of times, by the lips of so many of Your disciples and confessors, O Christ.
As Bishop of Rome and first servant of this temple, which stands on the place of St. Peter's martyrdom, I speak the same words today.
I speak them to invite You, Christ, in Your Eucharistic Presence to accept the daily adoration continuing through the entire day, in this temple, in this basilica, in this chapel.
Stay with us today and stay, from now on, every day, according to the desire of my heart, which accepts the appeal of so many hearts from various parts, sometimes far away, and above all meets the desire of so many inhabitants of the Apostolic See.
Stay! That we may meet You in the prayer of adoration and thanksgiving, in the prayer of expiation and petition, to which all those who visit this basilica are invited.
Stay! You Who are at one and the same time veiled in the Eucharistic Mystery of Faith and are also revealed under the species of bread and wine, which You have assumed in this Sacrament.
Stay! That Your presence in this temple may incessantly be reconfirmed, and that all those who enter here may become aware that it is Your house, "the dwelling of God with men" (Rev. 21:3) and, visiting this basilica, may find in it the very source of life and holiness that gushes forth from Your Eucharistic Heart...
One day, O Lord, You asked Peter: "Do you love Me?" You asked him three times -
and three times the Apostle answered: "Lord, You know everything, You know that I love You." (Jn 21:15-17)
May the answer of Peter, on whose tomb this basilica was erected, be expressed by this daily and day-long adoration which we have begun today.
May the unworthy successor of Peter in the Roman See - and all those who take part in the adoration of Your Eucharistic Presence - attest with every visit of theirs and make ring out again the truth contained in the Apostle's words:
"Lord You know everything; You know that I love You." Amen.
"How sweet it was, the first kiss of Jesus to my soul! Yes, it was a kiss of Love. I felt I was loved, and I too said: 'I love Thee, I give myself to Thee forever!' Jesus asked nothing of me, demanded no sacrifice. Already for a long time past, He and the little Therese had watched and understood one another... That day our meeting was no longer a simple look but a fusion. No longer were we two: Therese had disappeared as the drop of water which loses itself in the depths of the ocean, Jesus alone remained; the Master, the King! Had not Therese begged Him to take away from her, her liberty? That liberty made her afraid; so weak, so fragile did she feel herself that she longed to be united forever to Divine Strength."
- from Story of A Soul, the Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux
Jesus Waits for us Here with Divine Longing
St. Peter Julian Eymard
Adore and visit Jesus, abandoned and forsaken
by men in His Sacrament of Love.
Man has time for everything
except for visits to His Lord and God,
WHO IS WAITING AND LONGING FOR US
in the Blessed Sacrament.
The streets and places of entertainment
are filled with people;
the House of God is deserted.
Men flee from it; they are afraid of it.
Ah! Poor Jesus!
Did you expect so much indifference
from those You have redeemed,
from Your friends, from Your children, from me?
Sympathize with Jesus Who is betrayed,
insulted, mocked, and crucified far more ignominiously
in His Sacrament of Love than He was
in the Garden of Olives, in Jerusalem, and on Calvary.
Those whom He has the most honored, loved,
and enriched with His gifts and graces
are the very ones who offend Him the most
by their indifference.
Offer up for this intention all that you have suffered
during the day or week
that Jesus may be loved and adored by all.
Because we ourselves are unable to atone for
so much wrong,
we unite ourselves
to the infinite merits of our Savior Jesus.
Receive His Divine Blood
as it mystically flows from His Holy Wounds,
and offer it to the Father
in perfect atonement for the sins of the world.
Take His sufferings
and His prayer on the Cross
and beg the Heavenly Father
for pardon and mercy for all.
Unite your reparation
to that of the most Blessed Virgin
at the foot of the Cross or the altar,
and from the love of Jesus for His Divine Mother
you will obtain everything.
With Mary Let us Adore Him!
St. Peter Julian Eymard
Mary devoted herself exclusively to the Eucharistic Glory of Jesus. She knew that it was the desire of the Eternal Father to make the Eucharist known, loved and served by all men; that need of Jesus Heart was to communicate to all men His gifts of grace and glory. She knew, too, that it was the mission of the Holy Spirit to extend and perfect in the hearts of men, the reign of Jesus Christ, and that the Church had been founded only to give Jesus to the world.
All Marys desire, then, was to make Him known in His Sacrament. Her intense love for Jesus felt the need of expanding in this way, of consecrating itself - as a kind of relief, as it were - because of her own inability to glorify Him as much as she desired.
Ever since Calvary, all men were her children. She loved them with a Mothers tenderness and longed for their supreme good as for her own; therefore, she was consumed with the desire to make Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament known to all, to inflame all hearts with His love, to see them enchained to His loving service.
To obtain this favor, Mary passed her time at the foot of the Most Adorable Sacrament, in prayer and penance. There she treated the worlds salvation. In her boundless zeal, she embraced the needs of the faithful everywhere, for all time to come, who would inherit the Holy Eucharist and be Its adorers... Her prayers converted countless souls, and as every conversion is the fruit of prayer, and since Marys prayer could meet no refusal, the Apostles had in this Mother of Mercy their most powerful helper. "Blessed is he for whom Mary prays!"
Eucharistic adorers share Marys life and mission of prayer at the foot of the Most Blessed Sacrament. It is the most beautiful of all missions, and it holds no perils. It is the most holy, for in it all the virtues are practiced. It is, moreover, the most necessary to the Church, which has even more need of prayerful souls than of powerful preachers; of men of penance rather than men of eloquence. Today more than ever have we need of men who, by their self-immolation, disarm the anger of God inflamed by the ever increasing crimes of nations. We must have souls who by their importunity re- open the treasures of grace which the indifference of the multitude has closed. We must have true adorers; that is to say, men of fervor and of sacrifice. When there are many such souls around their Divine Chief, God will be glorified, Jesus will be loved, and society will once more become Christian, conquered for Jesus Christ by the apostolate of Eucharistic prayer.
"Every member of the Church must be vigilant in seeing that this sacrament of love shall be at the center of the life of the people of God so that through all the manifestations of worship due to it, Christ shall be given back 'love for love,' and truly become the life of our souls,"
- Holy Father, Pope John Paul II
"Today solemn exposition of the Blessed Sacrament is the grace and need of our time. Society will be restored and renewed when all its members group themselves around our Emmanuel."
- St. Peter Julian Eymard
"Although God is all powerful, He is unable to give more; though supremely wise, He knows not how to give more; though vastly rich, He has not more to give."
- St. Augustine, on the Holy Eucharist
"And in any preaching you do, admonish the people concerning repentance, and that nobody can be saved except he who receives the most holy Body and Blood of our Lord. And when It is sacrificed on the altar by the priest or borne anywhere, let all the people on bended knees render praise, glory and honor to the True and Living Lord God."
- from a letter written by St. Francis of Assisi
"Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration is our Lady's 'Peace Plan.' I am absolutely certain that through Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration, peace will come to our country and to the whole world. When we do on earth what is done in heaven, adore God perpetually, then there will be 'a new heaven and a new earth.' The only name, the only power, the only love that will bring an everlasting peace on the face of the earth, is The Name, The Power, and The Love of Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament."
- Rev. Msgr. Josefino S. Ramirez
"Harness the fire hidden in The Eucharist to bring about a true brotherhood and unity."
- Cardinal Jaime Sin
Our Lord Jesus Christ joined together on the same day the paschal lamb of the Jews and the True Manna when blessing the bread and the wine He said: "This is My Body, this is My Blood."
- St. Cyril of Alexandria
"How can this come about?" Mary asked. "The Holy Spirit will come upon you," the angel answered, "and the power of the Most High will cover you with its shadow." And now you are the one who puts the question: "How can bread become Christ and wine His Blood?" I answer: "The power of the Holy Spirit will be at work to give us a marvel which surpasses understanding."
- St. John Damascene (d. 749)
"If I can give you any advice, I beg you to get closer to the Eucharist and to Jesus... We must pray to Jesus to give us that tenderness of the Eucharist."
- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
"As the body cannot be sustained without corporeal food, nor continue in natural life, so without this life-giving food the soul cannot persist in the spiritual life of grace."
- Dionysius the Carthusian
"It would be easier for the world to survive without the sun than to do so without the Holy Mass."
- Padre Pio
The First Friday Devotion and St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
Every first Friday of the month she saw the favours, once already received, renewed and the Heart of Jesus was being shown to her as a luminous sun, whose rays, united together in the manner of inflamed darts, were reflected in her heart.
Then she felt herself lit up by a fire so alive, that it seemed it should have turned to ashes, as the Saviour deigned to tell her all that which He wished of her; ever more manifesting to her His Sacred Heart.
One time He Himself wished to prescribe the practices with which she should worthily honour Him, and conceded to her other favours which the saint recounted to us as follows:
"Once when the Blessed Sacrament was exposed, my soul being absorbed in extraordinary recollection, Jesus Christ, my sweet Master, presented Himself to me. He was brilliant with glory; His five wounds shone like five suns. Flames darted forth from all parts of His Sacred humanity but especially from His adorable breast, which resembled a furnace, and which, opening, displayed to me His loving and amiable Heart, the living source of these flames".
Whilst Margaret was contemplating Him, "He unfolded to me", she says, "the inexplicable wonders of His pure love, and to what an excess He had carried it for the love of men, from whom He had received only ingratitude. 'This is', He said, 'much more painful to Me than all that I suffered in My Passion. If men rendered to Me some return of love, I should esteem as little all I have done for them, and should wish, if such could be, to suffer it over again; but they meet My eager love with coldness and rebuffs. Do you, at least', said He, 'console and delight Me, by supplying as much as you can for their ingratitude'".
"'Fear nothing', the Lord said to me, 'I shall be thy strength. Listen only to what I desire of thee so as to prepare thee for the accomplishment of My designs.' Then the Lord requested of me that I, 'communicate every first Friday of the month, so as to make honourable reparation'".
"I wish I could pass my life at the foot of the holy tabernacles in which our adorable Saviour dwells."
- St. Eugene de Mazenod
"O eternal Trinity, You are a deep sea in which the more I seek the more I find, and the more I find, the more I seek to know You. You fill us insatiably, because the soul, before the abyss which You are, is always famished; and hungering for You, O eternal Trinity, it desires to behold truth in Your light. As the thirsty hart pants after the fount of living water, so does my soul long to leave this gloomy body and see You as You are, in truth.
"O unfathomable depth! O Deity eternal! O deep ocean! What more could You give me than to give me Yourself? You are an ever-burning Fire; You consume and are not consumed. By Your fire, You consume every trace of self-love in the soul. You are a Fire which drives away all coldness and illumines minds with its light, and with this light You have made known Your truth. Truly this light is a sea which feeds the soul until it is all immersed in You, O peaceful Sea, eternal Trinity! The water of this sea is never turbid; it never causes fear, but gives knowledge of the truth. This water is transparent and discloses hidden things; and a living faith gives such abundance of light that the soul almost attains to certitude in what it believes.
"You are the supreme and infinite Good, good above all good; good which is joyful, incomprehensible, inestimable; beauty exceeding all other beauty; wisdom surpassing all wisdom, because You are Wisdom itself. Food of angels, giving Yourself with fire of love to men! You are the garment which covers our nakedness; You feed us, hungry as we are, with Your sweetness, because You are all sweetness, with no bitterness. Clothe me, O eternal Trinity, clothe me with Yourself, so that I may pass this mortal life in true obedience and in the light of the most holy faith with which You have inebriated my soul."
- St. Catherine of Siena
"When we go before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament we represent the one in the world who is in most need of Gods Mercy." We "Stand in behalf of the one in the world who does not know Christ and who is farthest away from God and we bring down upon their soul the Precious Blood of The Lamb."
- Pope John Paul II
"People ask me: 'What will convert America and save the world?' My answer is prayer. What we need is for every parish to come before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament in Holy Hours of prayer."
- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
"Especially from The Eucharist, grace is poured forth upon us as from a fountain"
- Sacrosanctum Concilium
"At the end of the liturgical cycle in which we commemorate the mysteries of the Savior, the Church, who like a good Mother knows that our spiritual life cannot subsist without Jesus, leads us to Him, really and truly present in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. The solemnity of the Corpus Domini is not just the simple memorial of an historical event which took place almost two thousand years ago at the Last Supper; rather, it recalls us to the ever present reality of Jesus always living in our midst. We can say, in truth, that He has not "left us orphans," but has willed to remain permanently with us, in the integrity of His Person in the fullness of His humanity and His divinity. "There is no other nation so great," the Divine Office enthusiastically sings, "as to have its gods so near as our God is present to us." (RB). In the Eucharist, Jesus is really Emmanuel, God with us."
- from Divine Intimacy, by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.
"The Eucharist is not only Jesus actually living among us, but it is Jesus become our Food. This is the chief aspect under which today's liturgy presents the mystery to us; there is no part of the Mass which does not treat of it directly, or which does not, at least, make some allusion to it. The Introit refers to it when it mentions the wheat and honey with which God once fed the Hebrews in the desert, a miraculous food, and yet a very poor representation of the Living, Life-giving bread of the Eucharist. The Epistle (I Cor II, 23-29) speaks of it, recalling the institution of this Sacrament, when Jesus "took bread, and giving thanks, broke, and said, 'Take ye, and eat; this is My Body' "; the Gradual chants, "The eyes of all hope in You, O Lord, and You give them meat in due season." The very beautiful sequence Lauda Sion, celebrates it at length, and the Gospel (Jn 6, 56-59), echoing the Alleluia, cites the most significant passage of the discourse when Jesus Himself announced the Eucharist "My Flesh is meat indeed, and My Blood is drink indeed." The Communion Hymn repeats a sentence of the Epistle, and reminds us that we receive the Body of the Lord worthily. Finally, the Postcommunion tells us that Eucharistic Communion is the pledge of Eternal Communion, in Heaven. But, in order to have a better understanding of the immense value of the Eucharist, we must go back to the very words of Jesus, most opportunely recalled in the Gospel of the day, "He that eateth My Flesh and drinketh My Blood, abideth in Me and I in him."
- from Divine Intimacy, by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.
"My soul, if you wish to penetrate the depths of this Mystery, your gaze must be illumined by Love! You need to see and understand! Contemplate the Last Supper: see Jesus Who knows that He will soon be separated from the body of His humanity, and yet wishing to be united to us forever; contemplate the Love by which He institutes this Sacrament which permits Him to be corporeally and forever united to mankind. O Inextinguishable Love! O Love of Christ! O Love of the human race! What a true Furnace of Love! O Jesus, You already saw the death which awaited You; the sorrows and atrocious tortures of the Passion were already breaking Your Heart, and yet You offered Yourself to Your executioners, and permitted them, by means of this Sacrament, to possess You forever as an Eternal Gift, O You, Whose delights are to be with the children of men!
"O my soul, how can you refrain from plunging yourself ever deeper and deeper into the love of Christ, who did not forget you in life or in death, but who willed to give Himself wholly to you, and to unite you to Himself forever?"
- St. Angela Foligno
"Hidden God, devoutly I adore Thee, truly present beneath these veils: all my heart subdues itself before Thee, since all before Thee faints and fails."
- Adoro Te Devote
"Jesus made Himself our food in order to assimilate us to Himself, to make us live His life, to make us live in Him, as He Himself lives in His Father. The Eucharist is truly the Sacrament of Union and at the same time it is the clearest and most convincing proof that God calls us and pleads with us to come to intimate union with Himself."
- Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.
"The eternal tide flows hid in Living Bread. That with its Heavenly Life too be fed..."
- St. John of the Cross
"There is such an intimate connection between the 'Enthronement of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the home' and the Eucharist...
"The Enthronement was founded by Fr. Mateo Crawley, at the beginning of the century" and was instrumental in "bringing together a million faithful in the nocturnal adoration in the home, enthroning the Sacred Heart in millions of families."
- from Pere Jean du Coeur de Jesus D'Elbee's I Believe in Love
"The Enthronement of the Sacred Heart in the Home is the homage of adoration, of social reparation, and of fervent love, which the family as a cell of society renders to the Heart of Jesus, as the King of society. It never ceases to reconquer all of society for Jesus Christ by enthroning Him at the sources of life, nothing can resist the storm of passions. Authentic and lasting peace does not come, cannot come except by Him, the Prince of Peace. Jesus is the sole reality.
"Sooner or later all creatures fail us... He alone never deceives; He alone is faithful; He alone is the strength, the support, the unique Friend. Redouble your Eucharistic fervor! We must form profoundly Eucharistic families by the Enthronement in order to form strongly Christian societies, Christian not only on the surface and by custom, but in spirit and truth.
"Nocturnal adoration in the home constitutes the sinews of our holy war. Keep to it with all the ardor of your heart. Enthronement is living and lived primarily in this ardor.
"Love the Heart of Jesus, love Him foolishly, love him above all things, immersing all your affections in him without fear of sacrifice. The Heart of Jesus is an abyss that does not divide. We love more, we love better when we love Jesus."
- Fr. Mateo Crawley
"Every member of the Church must be vigilant in seeing that this Sacrament of Love shall be at the center of the life of the people of God so that through all of the manifestations of worship due it, Christ shall be given back love for love and truly become the life of our souls"
- Redemptor Hominis
"To be alone with Jesus in adoration and intimate union with Him is the Greatest Gift of Love - the tender love of Our Father in Heaven."
- Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta
"Verbum caro factum est" (Jn, 1,14). ["And the Word became flesh"]. The Incarnation of the Word, the ineffable mystery of the merciful love of God, who so loved man that He became "flesh" for his salvation is, in a way, prolonged and extended through the ages, and will be until the end of time, by the Eucharist, the Sacrament by means of which the Incarnate Word became Himself our "food."
- from Divine Intimacy by Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.
"What is this work of grace? The transformation of our souls into Jesus through love. St. Thomas shows us, after St. Augustine, that the Eucharist transforms our souls into Jesus through love. It is there that I find the definition of sanctity, the final word."
- Pere Jean du Coeur de Jesus D'Elbee
Revelation of the Sacred Heart
A CONSUMING FIRE
This (Blessed) Sacrament above all inflames the soul with divine love. "God is love (1Jn.IV,8)". And He is the fire which consumes in our hearts all earthly affections: "The Lord thy God is a consuming fire (Dt.IV,24)". Now the Son of God came precisely to kindle this fire of love: "I am come to cast fire in the earth"; and He added that He did not desire other that to see ignited this holy fire in our hearts: "and what will I, but that it be kindled? (Lk.XII,49)". And oh what flames of divine love Jesus Christ ignites in each one who devoutly receives Him in this Sacrament!
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