July/August/September 2012 Newsletter No. 129
“My Flesh is real food; my Blood real drink. Whoever eats My Flesh and drinks My Blood dwells continually in Me and I dwell in him.” (John 6:56-57)
“Jesus chose to remain among us in the mystery of the Eucharist, to bring us into communion with Him and with one another.” (Pope Benedict XVI, June 17, 2012, Angelus) “The prayer of adoration can be performed individually, kneeling before the tabernacle, or as a community with psalms and songs, but always laying the emphasis on silence so as to hear the Lord speaking within us, the Lord Who is alive and present in the Sacrament. The Virgin Mary is our guide also in this prayer, because no one better or more than her was able to contemplate Jesus with the gaze of faith, and to welcome in her heart the intimate echo of His human and divine presence.” (Pope Benedict XVI, June 10, 2012, Angelus)
Eucharistic Miracle of Lanciano
In the city of Lanciano, Italy, around the year 700 of Our Lord, there was a priest of the order of St. Basil who, though learned in the sciences of the world, was ignorant in ways of God, and was not strong in his faith. He was plagued by a doubt as to whether the consecrated Host was truly the Body of Christ, and the consecrated wine truly His Blood. He had difficulty believing in the mystery of transubstantiation (the miraculous changing of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ).
One morning, as
he was celebrating Mass, he had already said the most holy words of consecration
("This is My Body..., This is my Blood..."), as Jesus had taught it to
his Apostles, his doubts and errors weighed upon him more heavily than ever. By
a most singular and marvelous grace, he saw the Bread changed into Flesh and the
wine into Blood.
Frightened and confused by such a great and stupendous Miracle, he stood quite a while as if in a divine ecstasy; but eventually, his fear gave way to the spiritual happiness that filled his soul, and he turned his joyful yet tearful face to those around him, exclaiming "...Behold the Flesh and the blood of our Most Beloved Christ."
At those words, the bystanders ran to the altar and began, with tears, to cry for mercy. The faithful, who, having become witnesses themselves, spread the news throughout the entire city.
centuries after the miraculous occurrence it remains intact, a sustained
miracle! Upon a superficial examination, the Host of Flesh, which is still in
one piece and has retained the dimensions of the original “Large Host,” has a
fibrous appearance and a brown color, which becomes light-reddish if one places
a light in the back of the Ostensorium.
The blood, contained in the chalice, has an earthly color, inclined toward the yellow of ocher, and consists of five coagulated globules. Each of the parts is uneven in shape and size, and when weighed together, the total weight is equal to that of each piece.
The actual spot of the miracle is located beneath the present day tabernacle of the Church of St. Francis. The Miracle Itself is preserved in the second tabernacle, which is found in the high altar. The Host, now changed to Flesh, is contained in a silver Monstrance. The wine, now changed to Blood, is contained in a crystal chalice.
This great miracle has been approved of and recognized by the Catholic Church as authentic and verified by extensive scientific studies. For more information visit “The Eucharist and Adoration” section of our website and select “Eucharistic Miracles” at www.ACFP2000.com
“Kneel down and render the tribute of your presence and devotion to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Confide all your needs to him, along with those of others. Speak to him with filial abandonment, give free reign to your heart, and give him complete freedom to work in you as he thinks best.” (St. Padre Pio)
Thomas the Apostle, Martyr (d. 74)—Feast,
“Is not this gazing upon the Eucharistic Saviour a magnificent profession of our faith in the Divinity of Christ, such as was made by the incredulous Thomas? When St. Thomas said, ‘My Lord and my God!’ we may be sure he did not keep his eyes cast down, but looked with open and sincere gaze into the eyes of his Master.” (Fr. Lukas Etlin, O.S.B.)
Pier Giorgio Frassati, Patron of World Youth Days, Italy (1901-1925)—Feast,
Pier was a popular youth and athlete. He promoted Adoration and the Rosary, and helped the poor and sick. He said: “Feed on this Bread of Angels and from it you will gain the strength to fight your inner battle... against passion and all adversities, because Jesus Christ has promised to those who feed on the Holy Eucharist eternal life and the graces necessary to obtain it.”
St. Maria Goretti, Martyr, Patroness of Youth and Children of Mary, Italy (1890-1902)—July 6
From the Holy Eucharist and devotion to Mary, St. Maria drew strength to remain chaste unto death. Maria was killed for refusing to sin against purity with a young man named Alessandro, who stabbed her fourteen times. Maria forgave Alessandro who later converted. Maria’s mother and Alessandro attended her canonization by Pope Pius XII in 1950. More people were present than at any canonization ever before. He urged youth and parents to live pure lives, and avoid temptations against chastity which prevail in modern society, and wrote of the connection between Eucharistic devotion and purity.
St. Benedict, Priest, Founder of
the Benedictines, Italy (c.480-547)—Feast, July 11
Inspired as a youth to live an authentic Christian life, St. Benedict (which means blessed) became a hermit and was asked to lead a community of monks. He founded a monastery and wrote the Benedictine rule, which spread throughout Europe. A great restorer of the faith and religious life, St. Benedict’s motto was “ora et labora.” St. Benedict sought to live always in the presence of God, and centered his life on the Holy Eucharist, through prayer and meditation. He urged Eucharistic Communion and devotion. St. Benedict died after receiving his last Holy Communion. Many miracles were attributed to him and the St. Benedict’s medal, which is blessed with special prayers for protection against evil, and is still worn by many today.
Kateri Tekakwitha, Virgin, North America (1656-1680)—Feast,
Bl. Kateri, Lily of the Eucharist and Lily of the Mohawks, will be canonized on October 21, 2012 in Rome! Born in Auriesville, NY, Bl. Kateri awoke early every morning to journey through the woods to the Chapel to visit and receive Jesus in the Eucharist. She waited outside, even in the bitter cold of winter, until the chapel opened. A consecrated virgin, Bl. Kateri prayed, “I offer my soul to Christ the Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.” She devoted her life to prayer, penance and the care of the sick in Caughnawaga, near Montreal. Her litany reads: "Kateri, who loved Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, pray for us."
St. Bridget of Sweden, Wife, Religious, Foundress, Sweden (1373)—Feast, July 23
“Eternal Father, through Mary’s unblemished hands and the Divine Heart of Jesus, I offer You Your Son on the Cross, His nailing and raising, His Wounds on the Hands and Feet, and the three streams of His Precious Blood that poured forth from these for us, His extreme tortures of the Body and Soul, His precious death and its non-bleeding renewal in all Holy Masses on earth, as atonement for all wounds against vows and regulations within the Orders, as reparation for my and all the world’s sins, for the sick and dying, for all holy priests and laymen, for the Holy Father’s intentions toward the restoration of Christian families, for the strengthening of faith, for our country and unity among all nations in Christ and His Church, as well as for those who feel exiled from faith and family.” (From “The Twelve Year Prayers of St. Bridget on the Passion of Jesus”)
Sts. Anne and Joachim, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Jerusalem (1st Century)—Feast, July 26
Sts. Anne & Joachim, we bless you for your great faith and love as parents. Your respect and reverence for the sacredness of human life made you the parents of Mary, Mother of the Lord. Through your intercession, we ask God to grant young people today that same reverence for the gift of new life. May they accept, cherish, and nourish life from the very moment of conception. Grant to us as a nation a renewed reverence for every human life. As Mary cherished her Child from the womb even to the tomb, so may we see in every person the very image of God. Great Saints Anne and Joachim, we ask this grace in the name of Mary’s Son, Jesus the Lord. Amen. Sts. Anne & Joachim, pray for us, to love Jesus in the Holy Eucharist!
Ignatius of Loyola, Priest, Founder of Jesuits, Spain (1491-1556)—Feast,
St. Ignatius wrote: “Jesus in the tabernacle is my God and my All! He is my Heaven on earth!”
St. Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor, Italy (1696-1787)—Feast, Aug. 1
“We can open our souls to Him, tell Him what we need, beg him for powerful graces. We are perfectly free to approach the King of the universe with full confidence and without fear.” (St. Alphonsus Liguori)
St. Peter Julian Eymard, Priest, Apostle of the Eucharist, France (1811-1868)—Feast, Aug. 2
“When the adorer crosses the threshold of the sacred temple, when he sees the mysterious lamp which, like the star of the Magi, indicates the presence of Jesus, oh, then, with what faith and joy, with what transports of love he prostrates himself at the foot of this tabernacle of love!” (St. Peter Julian Eymard)
St. John Vianney, Cure of Ars, Patron of Priests, France (1786-1859)—Feast, Aug. 4
“He pledges himself to remain in the midst of us, day and night, to be our Father, Consoler, and Friend. Happier than those who lived during his mortal life, when he was only in one place, we find him today in every corner of the world; and this happiness is promised to us till the end of time. Oh, tremendous love of a God for his creatures! How great is the tenderness of the Father!” (St. John Vianney)
The Transfiguration of the Lord—Feast, Aug. 6
“[The Holy Eucharist] is a fountain of light, shedding abundant rays of truth. And beside it the angelic powers from on high have taken their stand, gazing on the beauty of its streams, since they perceive more clearly than we the power of what lies before us and its unapproachable dazzling rays.” (St. John Chrysostom)
“By adoring and partaking of His beauty, His Goodness and His purity in this Divine Sacrament, you will become all beautiful, good and pure.” (St. Francis de Sales)
St. Dominic, Priest, Dominicans Founder, Spain (1170-1221)—Feast, Aug. 8
“Every night…St. Dominic would go to the church, and there, near the Lord, spend the long exacting hours of the night in prayer where he found interior consolation, solace, secret joys, ineffable delights, which our Lord poured out from His enchanting Heart in this holy Sacrament of love.” (Hidden Treasure, Louis Kaczmarek)
St. Teresa Benedicta Church Doctor, Carmelite Nun, Martyr, Germany (1891-1942)—Feast, Aug. 9
A Jewish convert, St. Teresa (Edith Stein) wrote of the import of daily Mass and Adoration: “To make room in our life for the Eucharistic Lord, so that He can change our life into His, is that asking too much?”
St. Clare of Assisi, Foundress of Poor Clare Nuns, Italy (1193-1253)—Feast, Aug. 11
St. Clare was an ardent adorer of the Blessed Sacrament. She wrote: “Place your mind before the mirror of eternity! Place your soul in the brilliance of glory! Place your heart in the figure of the divine substance!”
St. Maximilian Mary Kolbe, Franciscan Priest, Martyr, Poland (1894-1941)—Feast, Aug. 14
“Let us not forget to visit . . . Jesus. Let us tell Him we love Him. We might ask Him what He wants of us, what are His wishes. Sometimes we might ask Jesus something for ourselves and something for others. One can speak to Jesus as brother to brother, as friend to friend, more so, since it often happens that men do not understand us, whereas Jesus understands each of us always.” (St. Maximilian Maria Kolbe)
The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven—Solemnity, August 15
Our Lady is “inseparably united with Jesus in the Host. Jesus is always the Son she adores. He is Flesh of her flesh and Blood of her blood.” (Jesus Our Eucharistic Love, Fr. Stefano Manelli, O.F.M. Conv., S.T.D.)
St. Jane Frances de Chantal, Widow, Mother, Religious, France (1572-1641)—Feast, Aug. 18
“God, who is so great, has become so little for the love of us [in the Eucharist], that He has even hidden the splendor of His greatness, that He might appear lowly.” (St. Jane Frances de Chantal)
St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Cistercian Abbot, Doctor Church, France (d. 1153)—Feast, Aug. 20
“Jesus, what made You so small? LOVE!” St. Bernard was fervent in his Eucharistic devotion and preaching. He founded over 40 monasteries and is known for numerous miracles.
The Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary—Feast, August 22:
Mary, Queen of the clergy, pray for them. Help them to faithfully love and serve Jesus. Help them lead many souls to Jesus in the Holy Eucharist!
St. Rose of Lima, Patroness of South America (1586-1617)—Feast, Aug. 23
St. Rose is known for her great love and defense of the Holy Eucharist, mystical gifts and love for the poor.
Martyr (d. 71)—Feast,
St. Bartholomew exclaimed: “Rabbi, Thou art the Son of God, Thou art the King of Israel!” (Jn 1:49). St. Bartholomew, a fervent disciple, spread the Gospel in the East, including the Indies and Asia Minor.
Monica, Wife, Mother, North Africa, (332-387), Feast, Aug. 27
Converted prodigal son, Augustine, wrote of his Mother’s Eucharistic devotion: “To this sacrament of our redemption Thy handmaid had bound her soul by the bond of faith.”
Augustine, Bishop, Doctor of the Church, N. Africa, (354-430), Feast, Aug. 28
St. Augustine wrote, “God in His omnipotence could not give more, in His wisdom knew not how to give more, in His riches had not more to give than the Eucharist.”
Bl. Mother Teresa
of Calcutta, Religious, Albania (1910-1997)—Ann.
of Death, Sept. 5
“Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is the best time you will spend on earth.” (Bl. Mother Teresa)
Birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary—Sept. 8
“Desiring also to adore with fervor the Body of Christ our Lord there on the altar before me, I remembered how the Blessed Virgin Mary, enthroned above all the choirs of angels, was, of all creatures that came from the hand of the Almighty, the one who most worthily honors and serves the divine Majesty.” (Bl. Peter Favre)
The Most Holy Name of Mary—Feast, September 12
“The Wisdom of God creates poets. How evidently this is so can be seen by considering Mary of Nazareth. When she had given to the Lord of Hosts the Flesh that would become our Bread, Wisdom caused her to break into a poem of praise, a song repeated by more people than probably any other ever composed. The Presence within stirred her to exult and proclaim the One ‘who has filled the hungry with good things.’ And the praise owed to the Presence of embodied Wisdom among us has never ceased in the Church from that day until this.” (The Hidden Manna, James T. O'Connor)
St. John Chrysostom, Bishop, Doctor of the Church, Patron of Orators, Syria (c. 347-407)—Sept. 13
St. John proclaimed the Presence of Jesus: “What excuse shall we have, or how shall we obtain pardon, if we consider it too much to go to Jesus in the Eucharist, who descended from Heaven for our sake?”
Our Lady of Sorrows: “Behold your Mother!” (Jn 19:27)—Sept. 15
“What must Mary have felt as she heard from the mouth of Peter, John, James and the other Apostles the words spoken at the Last Supper: ‘This is my body which is given for you’ (Lk 22:19)? The body given up for us and made present under sacramental signs was the same body which she had conceived in her womb! For Mary, receiving the Eucharist must have somehow meant welcoming once more into her womb that heart which had beat in unison with hers and reliving what she had experienced at the foot of the Cross. ‘Do this in remembrance of me’ (Lk 22:19). In the ‘memorial’ of Calvary all that Christ accomplished by his passion and his death is present. Consequently all that Christ did with regard to his Mother for our sake is also present. To her he gave the beloved disciple and, in him, each of us: ‘Behold, your Son!’ To each of us he also says: ‘Behold your mother!’ (cf. Jn 19: 26-27). Experiencing the memorial of Christ’s death in the Eucharist also means continually receiving this gift. It means accepting—like John—the one who is given to us anew as our Mother” (Bl. John Paul II, Ecclesia de Eucharistia, 56 & 57).
St. Robert Bellarmine, Priest, Cardinal, Jesuit, Patron of Catechists, Italy (1542-1621)—Sept. 17
As a young adult, St. Robert made four visits to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament daily.
St. Januarius, Bishop, Martyr, Italy (d. 305)—Feast, September 19
Since the early days of the Church, Christians used cloths or flasks to collect the blood of the martyrs to preserve for devotion. The blood of St. Januarius, who was beheaded under Diocletian, was gathered and venerated over the centuries. In 1389, a phenomenon began to happen—during a procession with the blood of St. Januarius it began to bubble. Since then the coagulated blood has miraculously liquefied several times a year! The blood is said to liquefy after many prayers (e.g., following Mass). This miracle is a symbol of the hope that we find in the protection of the Precious Body and Blood of Christ our Savior.
Vincent De Paul (1581-1660) Priest, Servant, France— Feast, September 27
Lover of the poor, St. Vincent prayed before Jesus in the Holy Eucharist before all important decisions.
Archangels Michael, Gabriel and Raphael, Saints—Feast, Sept. 29
St. Michael, protector of the Eucharist, pray for us! St. Gabriel, bearer of God’s word, pray for us! St. Raphael, bringer of God’s healing, pray for us!