The Holy Eucharist IS God
As I mentioned last week, Bishop Patrick has asked that for the next four Sundays we preach on aspects of the Holy Eucharist in preparation for the Eucharistic Congress which will take place in Liverpool this coming September.
As Catholics we need to know that the Eucharist is JESUS. And JESUS is alive, because He is risen from the dead and He is the One True God. Therefore the Sacred Host we receive in Holy Communion is not just a wafer or a piece of bread. It is the living Flesh and Blood of JESUS Who is risen. The Eucharist is a living Person – JESUS Christ, fully God and fully man. This is one of the great truths of our Faith. JESUS, the Second Person of the Blessed Trinity dwells in our churches in the tabernacle. The small red lamp which burns constantly beside it is a sign of His Real Presence. God is, of course, everywhere, but in the Eucharist He is there substantially AND in His humanity.
In 1916, the year before Our Lady appeared at Fatima in Portugal, an Angel who announced himself as the Guardian Angel of Portugal appeared three times to the seers Lucia, Jacinta and Francisco to prepare them. On the third occasion something truly extraordinary happened. The Angel appeared with a Chalice in his hand, holding over It a Host from which drops of Blood fell into the Chalice. He left the Host and Chalice suspended in the air and then prostrated himself before It, repeating the following prayer three times and teaching the children to do the same:
“Most Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I adore Thee profoundly. I offer Thee the Precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of JESUS Christ, present in all the tabernacles of the world, in reparation for the outrages, sacrileges, and indifference with which He is offended. Through the infinite merits of His most Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I beg the conversion of poor sinners.”
An Angel from Heaven who lives constantly in the presence of Almighty God prostrated Himself before the Blessed Sacrament! This is a great reminder to all of us of the adoration and reverence we must always give to God present in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar and when we receive Him in Holy Communion. Our churches are truly sacred spaces. The Holy Eucharist is God Himself.
Fr Paul Gillham IC