Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Michael Seagriff

11/15/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

You were there waiting for me, but I could not get in.

I was disappointed when I was not able to see You this morning.

Catholics pray reverently.

Catholics pray reverently.

Highlights

By Michael Seagriff

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/15/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Blog

Keywords: Belief in Real Presence, Eucharist, Reverence, SilenceVisits to Blessed Sacrament


Canastota, NY - I have grown to treasure our morning visit, Mass and the reception of Your Sacred Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity- so nourishing, peaceful and transforming.  I have noticed over the years that on those days I am unable or foolishly choose not to start my morning this way, the rest of my day is often more hectic and stressful. I marvel at Your great Love and Generosity in making Yourself so available to all of us.  We certainly are not worthy of that love and attention.

How joyful I felt as I drove up to Your place later that same day. I did not have a lot of time to spend with You, but You can do so much in such a short period of time.  It is nice to end my day with You, however briefly our time together may be.

I began talking to You as I walked towards the Church door. As I grabbed the door handle, I was anxious to be with You. Suddenly, my peace was shattered. The door was locked. I could not get in.  You were there waiting for me, but I could not get in. It was only 3:30 in the afternoon!!!  Had others come and been denied admittance? So few ever visit You; how disappointed You must be when finally we come to see You but cannot get in.

This is not the first time that I have been locked out. I sometimes stop at Your other places during my travels but cannot get in. For so much of my life, I took You for granted and rarely thought of You.  Now I am incensed when we are kept apart. You told St. Margaret Mary Alacoque that you have a "terrible thirst to be loved by your creatures in the Most Blessed Sacrament". You gave us this gift of Yourself. You long for us to visit and to show You heartfelt appreciation for all that You have done for us.

St. Andrews Catholic Church in Roanoke, Virginia.


I want to spend time in Your presence. I want my visits to be acts of reparation for the all the offenses against Your Sacred Heart, including those that I have committed. I know that You are with me wherever I am. But You are really, truly and most especially present in the tabernacles of all the Catholic Churches throughout the world, even if, in some of these structures, Your tabernacle is hidden. Like little Francisco of Fatima, I want to spend some time with my "hidden Jesus". You are the only thing of everlasting value in these buildings.

Why (as St. Peter Julian Eymard observed more than 100 years ago) do we have time for everything except for visits to our Lord and God, Who is waiting and longing for us in the Blessed Sacrament?  Why do so few visit You? Why are those who try to so often locked out? Why are Your Church and its members so timid and so silent about this great mystery and gift? Why have we lost reverence for and belief in Your Real Presence?

Why do our activities in Church before Mass more resemble a social hour than silent preparation for the reception of Your Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity? How can we show You reverence when we sometimes have no kneelers? Why is there so often no silent time for us to thank You after receiving this magnificent gift? How can we adequately thank You over the music and singing? How can we demonstrate our reverence and appreciation for this Gift if sometimes we no sooner get to our pew than Mass continues?

Perhaps if silence were to return to our Churches before Mass, following the Eucharist and after Mass ended, reverence for You would be restored. Perhaps if the use of extraordinary ministers of the Eucharist was not so ordinary and if we saw all of your priests and people handle and receive Your Body and Blood more reverently, we would have a greater appreciation for Your Real Presence. Perhaps if we were reminded each Sunday at Mass by words and by what we see that You are really and truly present in the tabernacle, more of us would come.  Perhaps if we were encouraged to visit You, more would do so.

Perhaps if we knew that "every moment we spend in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament deepens our union with Jesus, transforms us into the very image and likeness of God Himself, and makes up for those who do not know Him or do not love Him", more would come.

Perhaps if we knew that our late Holy Father (John Paul II) had asked that there be Perpetual Adoration in every Catholic Church throughout the world, more of us would come. Perhaps if we were taught that "every holy hour draws the world and everyone in it closer to Christ", more would come.  Perhaps if we knew that "every holy hour lifts up the whole world to the Father for His blessing", more would come. Perhaps if we knew that "every holy hour would save a soul from going to hell and bring that soul to heaven", more of us would come.

We are told that some seventy percent of those who profess to be Catholic no longer attend Sunday Mass and that only thirty percent of those who do actually believe that You are really and truly present in the Blessed Sacrament. How can that be in the Church You founded?

Why do we fail to "adore and visit Jesus, abandoned and forsaken in His Sacrament of Love"? Is not the time long past due for all in Your Church to teach more clearly and more emphatically of Your Real Presence and the need for us to spend time in That transforming Presence? Is not our wholehearted response to John Paul II's plea (echoed repeatedly by his successor Pope Benedict XVI) that we rediscover "a sense of awe and amazement in the Eucharist", also long overdue?

When I initially wrote this reflection several years ago, I humbly suggested that the Catholic Church respond to this sad reality by first unlocking the doors of its Churches and by reinstating "silence" as the reverent language spoken there.[1]  Small but essential steps, I thought then.  "Jesus will be pleased," I wrote then. "He will transform our families, our Church, our communities and us."
Unfortunately, not enough parishes have implemented these simple steps. Is there any wonder then that rampant disbelief in Your Real Presence continues, or that so many of our "locked Churches" have since been "permanently closed" and our Lord evicted?
___________________________________
[1] Lest anyone feel that I am trying to impose my own personal preferences on the way we conduct ourselves and worship our Lord in our Churches, I would simply point out that much of what I have suggested here we are either already required to do under the General Instruction of the Roman Missal (GIRM) or has been recommended in the Encyclicals and Apostolic Letters of our gifted Popes, living and deceased.
[This article originally appeared on The Integrated Life Channel of Catholic Exchange on April 14, 2010]

A birth foretold: click here to learn more!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for July 2015
Universal:
That political responsibility may be lived at all levels as a high form of charity.
Evangelization: That, amid social inequalities, Latin American Christians may bear witness to love for the poor and contribute to a more fraternal society.



Comments


More Blog

This Is The Way; Walk In It

Image of 'No matter which way you go, go with me' says the Lord.

By Jackie Stammen

My heart seems to be in a continuous state of pondering the many questions scattered and spinning around in my head. I guess all hearts do this - or perhaps assuming so is my way of rationalizing my little bit of crazy. NASHVILLE, TN - Mondays are usually a battle for ... continue reading


The Secret to Raising a Saint

Image of Make your family life the best it can be, through love and Faith.

By Tara K. E. Brelinsky

Comparing their family to mine, I noted how soft-spoken and gentle they all were. From modest, tidy clothes to neat hair styles, their five children always appeared well groomed and respectful. Whereas (in my estimation), my brood of eight off-spring are more often ... continue reading


Dear Younger Self, Here's 5 Things You Don't Need to Worry About

By Tara K. E. Brelinsky

If I could go back and counsel my younger self, here are the top 5 Do's and Don't s I'd offer:* 1 Don't worry so much about appearances.* 2 Don't try to raise a star athlete, concert pianist, math wizard, novelist, ballerina, and black-belted karate kid.* 3 Don't do ... continue reading


Witnessing Miracles - Visualize all that God has Prepared for Those who Love Him

Image of 1 Corinthians 2:9 says,

By Shelly A. Schneider

1 Corinthians 2:9 says, "What no eye has seen and no ear has heard, what the mind of man cannot visualize; all that God has prepared for those who love him." NASHVILLE, TN - As a human being, there are things of this world that I do not know or understand: disease, ... continue reading


Wrestling with the Human Teenage Brain Watch

Image of Developmentally, teens and early 20-somethings are not at the place where they are concerned about (or even thinking of) the consequences of their behavior.

By Shelly A. Schneider

Christopher, our oldest, has come such a long way. At 22, he is serving his country as a soldier in the United States Army. Jim and I are incredibly proud of how he has grown in spirit, mind and body over the last 18 months. He has a plan for his life and is ... continue reading


S is for Shelly...and Sinner

Image of 'S' is for Sinner & Saint.

By Shelly A. Schneider

You've heard of the 'Scarlet Letter,' right? The woman in the novel wore a large red, 'A' on her person to signify her act of adultery.  NASHVILLE, TN - My act so many years ago had nothing to do with adultery, but I'm walking around these days with a giant ... continue reading


Laugh Today. Laugh Often. Laugh Heartily. Watch

Image of Woman laughing out loud.

By Jackie Stammen

It is always astounding to me how therapeutic laughter is. Laughter brings happiness. NASHVILLE, TN - Years ago I spent a lot of time with someone who would make fun of my laugh. I have a loud, hearty, and recognizable (maybe an even embarrassing laugh) and I guess he ... continue reading


Abortion: A Litmus Test for Believers Watch

Image of Pregnant? - Choose Life

By Chaplain Adele M. Gill, RN, BSN

August 3rd, 2015, was a tragic day in the life of Americans on both sides of the abortion debate, as the Senate voted 53-46 to continue funding Planned Parenthood. Both the abortion industry and US politicians have recently been exposed in America as ... continue reading


Christ has put us on earth to act as beacons that give light

Image of St. John Chrysostom - Feastday September 13

By Michael Seagriff

As we bemoan the apparent disintegration of the moral fiber and structure of this once great nation, we most recognize our own significant contributions to this tragic outcome - remaining silent in the face of evil, reluctance and fear to teach and defend the ... continue reading


Holy Spirit, watch over my children as they drive! Watch

Image of I pray for my children's safety every time they get behind the wheel.

By Shelly A. Schneider

Christopher and Michael have their driver's licenses, and our 17-year-old daughter, Sam, will test for the license any day now. There are so many thoughts that bounce around in my head when I realize that the person sitting next to me in the Mocha Machine (our pet name ... continue reading


All Blog News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Colossians 1:1-8
1 From Paul, by the will of God an apostle of Christ ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 4:38-44
38 Leaving the synagogue he went to Simon's house. ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 2nd, 2015 Image

St. Ingrid of Sweden
September 2: Born in Sknninge, Sweden, in the 13th century, St. Ingrid lived ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter