Posted by: fvbcdm | June 20, 2014

Feast of Saint Florentina (20 June 2014)

This weekend will bring us a most special celebration in our life of faith. It is the solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ.  During his public life on earth, Our Lord laid the foundation of his Church. There are four essential elements to that foundation: the doctrine that we are to believe and practice; the moral law which we are to follow, the hierarchy who are to govern the Church, and the sacramental system which is to provide structure and sanctification to the Christian people.

Our Lord gave us seven sacraments; some to be received only once, like baptism, confirmation, and holy orders. The others may be received more than once, according to circumstances. The greatest of the sacraments and the one to be received most frequently is the sacrament of the Eucharist. In that sacrament we receive the body and blood, soul and divinity of Christ under the appearances of bread and wine. It is the continuous presence of Jesus with his Church, his people, until the end of time. It is also our main means of prayer, as we offer the Eucharist to the Father in sacrifice, and the main means of our sanctification, since we receive Christ into our bodies and souls by physically receiving Holy Communion.

Right now, we are going through a low period in the history of religion. Many have turned away from the Church entirely. Others have so lost their reverence and respect for Jesus in the Eucharist that they receive the sacrament in the state of serious sin, thus committing the sin of sacrilege against this most holy gift of Christ to us. They are so indifferent to the Eucharist that they see it as no more than a symbol, a religious rite to which anyone and everyone has a right, even those who do not believe it to be what it really is.

The Church asks us to deepen our love for, and faith in, Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, to receive him with ever increasing devotion and appreciation, and to live lives that are more and more worthy of Christians who live in great intimacy with Christ in the Eucharist. Our Lord wants our Christian Catholic lives to be an ongoing love affair with him in the Blessed Sacrament. As Saint Augustine once pointed out, when we eat ordinary bread, we change it into ourselves. But when we receive Jesus in the Eucharist, he changes us into himself. Let us try to allow Jesus to continue changing us into himself until we are very near perfection in this life. We do this by receiving Holy Communion frequently, hungrily, and with deep devotion and joy. Thank you for seeking God’s truth, God Bless you, Father Victor Brown, O.P.

Note:  This message was composed some years ago

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