The Gift We Enjoy
By Monsignor Charles M. Mangan
Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen wrote years ago that while Jesus could have chosen to leave anything--financial security, a promise of earthly contentment, etc.--as a "last will and testament" to His Apostles during the Last Supper on the evening of Holy Thursday, He decided to leave behind the very best gift possible: Himself. And the world has never been the same.
The Most Holy Eucharist is the real, true and substantial Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of the Son of God and Son of Mary. How fortunate we are to have the Most Blessed Sacrament near us.
The Solemnity of Corpus Christi highlights the Church's sincerest and continual gratitude to God for this magnificent treasure that never grows old. The Church would not be the Church without the Most Holy Eucharist. And the Holy Spirit inspires the Faithful to be aware that the Church adores the Father in Jesus living in the Holy Eucharist through the power of the Holy Spirit.
During this period in which an important debate rages concerning whether pro-abortion Catholic politicians should be denied the Holy Eucharist, we administer to ourselves an examination of conscience regarding our attitudes towards the Bread of Life and the Chalice of Salvation. Here are only a few possible questions.
Do I know what the Holy Eucharist is? Can I explain this "Sacrament of Sacraments" to another?
Can I identify persons in my life who seem (or, if deceased, seemed) to be on "fire" for the Holy Eucharist? Who are my Eucharistic "heroes" and "heroines"?
How do I prepare myself to receive Holy Communion? Am I aware of the obligation to fast for one hour from food and drink (medicine and water may be taken) before receiving the Most Holy Eucharist?
Do I confess any and all previously unconfessed mortal sins to a priest within the Sacrament of Penance before going to Holy Communion?
Do I notice any difference in my thoughts and behavior after receiving Holy Communion?
Have the years of receiving the Body and Blood of Christ made me less self-serving and more generous towards the outcast, lonely, forgotten and dying?
If I were to stop availing myself of the Most Holy Eucharist, would I remain charitable and joyful? Can I exist without Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament?
Have I ever contemplated the link between the Eucharistic Jesus and the Mother of God?
Do I spend time in adoration of the Holy Eucharist whether reserved in the Tabernacle or exposed in the Monstrance?
Our response to the Most Holy Eucharist is quite simple: adoration, love and conversion. How pleased the Risen Lord Jesus will be when His needy sons and daughters finally cooperate and allow His Body and Blood to bring about their genuine happiness in this life as well as in the next.
"O Sacrament most holy, O Sacrament divine, All praise and all thanksgiving, be every moment Thine."
Jesus, Living in the Most Blessed Sacrament, have mercy on us!
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The Most Holy Eucharist
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