Living in the Two Hearts

My Spiritual Insights and Musings

Posts Tagged ‘faith’

Advent Begins…

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on December 3, 2017

We prepare for 4 weeks the coming of the Savior of the world.

Special Note: You’ll want your Bible present to look up passages.  If you have anything other than RSV, NAB, KJV, or NIV,  then your translation might lead you astray.  The newest translations are very loose with little holding to the original Latin text. And if you’re Catholic, I recommend the RSV, it’s the closest to the Latin text next to the Vulgate.

What is Advent?

The Catechism of  the Catholic Church teaches us:

[It’s the] Liturgical Season of four weeks devoted to the preparation for the coming of Christ at Christmas~Glossary Terms

When the Church celebrates the liturgy of Advent each year, she makes present this ancient expectancy of the Messiah, for by sharing in the long preparation for the Savior’s first coming, the faithful renew their ardent desire for His second coming (cf. Rev22:17).  By celebrating the precursor’s birth and martyrdom, the Church unites herself to His desire: “He must increase, but I must decrease,”(cf. Jn 3:30) ~CCC§524

To me it seems more than adequate to say, this Advent is unlike any other we have experienced in that so much is going on in our world today, that I feel it very necessary to pack as much ‘spiritual meat’ into the upcoming reflections as I can.  Time being of the essence I will republish writings I did called “As Seen Through Mary’s Eyes”, and add to them as much reference as I can to the Catechism and Sacred Scripture. 

So many people have missed the significance of God’s decision to come among us, first as an infant and then as a child and so forth, through His chosen vessel – that is Mary.  I CRINGE every time I hear someone refer to the movie, “The Nativity”, as a good source for a Christmas Devotion. It’s totally NOT.

I heard it once said that the creators of that film were surprised that it did not do as well as they thought it ought; but I wasn’t surprised.  The movie DISSED the Holy Family in a shameful way.  They ignored tradition and concentrated on just PARTS of Luke and Matthew’s Gospel accounts that suited their story instead of considering the FULLNESS of the story. 

It blatantly suggested that Mary and Joseph were just good people that had something extraordinary happen to them, and completely ignored the fact that Mary was more than just a good person while Joseph, in his choice of life, seemed fashioned for the task of caring for God and His mother by his Creator. 

This is why it is so IMPORTANT to have the FULLNESS of the FAITH.  That is BOTH Scripture AND Tradition (Good Theology).  That is what I hope these Advent writings will reflect, the fullness of the faith, and will give the reader the “spiritual meat” required to prepare one’s heart for the Coming of Christ our King as the rest of our world spirals into chaos.  By keeping Christ in our hearts and as our CENTER, regardless of the world and its follies, we will NOT be shaken, but will HOPE in Him. 

You’ll find Scripture colored maroon, the Catechism colored in deep green, my comments left plain, and the traditional writing done in various shades of blue and purple; and as always, emphasis has been added when appropriate.

Please take a moment to read the INTRODUCTION before you begin this Advent reflection.

Come Holy Spirit and Fill the Hearts of Your Faithful…

IN THE BEGINNING

BEFORE TIME BEGAN, the Holy Trinity decreed that one day, after the creation of the world and of man and after man’s fall, God the Son was to be born of a Virgin Mother. 

SCRIPTURE:

“…I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” ~Gen 3:15

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign.  Behold, a virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call His name Immanuel. ~Isaiah 6:14

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him. ~Eph 1: 3-4

In order that this Mother should be the purest human being who ever lived, Almighty God decreed that she was to be miraculously exempt from all stain of original sin…

Kissing the face of God…

CATECHISM

The Fathers of the Eastern tradition call the Mother of God “the All Holy” (Panagia) and celebrate her as “free from any stain of sin, as though fashioned by the Holy Spirit and formed as a new creature.” By the grace of God,  Mary remained free of every personal sin her whole life long. ~CCC§493

Meaning….

Through the centuries the Church has become ever more aware that Mary, “full of grace” through God, (cf Lk 1:28),  was redeemed from the moment of her conception. That is what the dogma of the Immaculate Conception confesses, as Pope Pius IX proclaimed in 1854:

The most Blessed Virgin Mary was, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God AND by virtue of the merits of Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, preserved immune from all stain of original sin.

~CCC§491

This is why it is a GRAVE ERROR to just present the Blessed Virgin as a really nice girl who had something extraordinary happen to her.  And unfortunately, most of the films made about Jesus’ life when dealing with His early years have done just that.  Forgive us, Holy Mother of God, we know NOT what we do.  Lord Jesus, do not hold this error regarding your Holy Mother against Your ignorant children.  May we do better to understand her role in our redemption during this Advent Season.

“God sent forth His Son,” but to prepare a body for Him, (cf Gal 4:4; Heb 10:5),  He wanted the free cooperation of a creature. For this, from all eternity God chose for the mother of His Son a daughter of Israel, a young Jewish woman of Nazareth in Galilee, “a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary” (Lk 1: 26-27)

The Father of mercies willed that the Incarnation should be preceded by assent on the part of the predestined mother, so that just as a woman had a share in the coming of death, so also should a woman contribute to the coming of life

~CCC§488

Eve brought the expulsion from Eden thus entered in death, You may freely eat of every tree of the garden; but the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day you eat of it you shall die.” (cf Gen 2: 16b-17)

But Mary brought forth the Savior who gives LIFE, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…all things were made through Him…In Him was LIFE, and the LIFE was the light of men.” (Jn 1:1, 3a, 4)

Thus Mary is the Mother of Life as she IS the Mother of God, Who is the Word made flesh, Jesus the Christ (cf Jn 1:14).

TRADITION:

St. Anne was born in Bethlehem of rich parents who owned many flocks of sheep and herds of cattle.  But they regularly gave away to the poor a large part of their possessions and kept very little for themselves.  After Anne’s birth they moved to a beautiful country estate… near Nazareth.

YEARS LATER…

St Anne & St Joachim – Parents of Mary

One day Anne happened to be praying fervently to God to give her a husband who would help her to live according to the Divine Law.  And at the very same moment on another farm near Nazareth and unusually pious middle-aged bachelor named Joachim was also praying for God’s help in choosing a wife.

When the prayers of St. Anne and St. Joachim were presented by the angels before the throne of the Blessed Trinity, God decreed that this pure couple should unite in marriage…

In their home they frequently talked together about God and the coming of the Redeemer, for which they prayed long and fervently.  Both Anne and Joachim had been serious even in their youth.  Now as they matured, they made a distinguished and devout couple.

In His wisdom Almighty God proceeded to purify them still further by giving them a heavy cross to bear, a cross which only grew heavier as the years passed: they remained childless.  Among the Israelites in those times, this was considered not only the greatest misfortunes and disgrace (1Sam 1:5,7,10-11)…

This same condition would reappear in Salvation History with St. Elizabeth (mother of John the Baptist), and her husband, Zachariah, and their experience just before John was conceived.  See Luke 1: 5-7

But they took these humiliations with patience and continued to pray that God might bless their marriage with children.  Seven years passed without an answer to their prayers.

THEN ONE DAY…

…when Joachim was offering his sacrifice in the temple, the priest rebuked and insulted him saying, “Why do you come here, Joachim?  Your offerings are not acceptable to the Lord!”  His face burning with shame, the poor man withdrew to a corner of the Temple and prayed: “O Lord, my sins merit this disgrace.  But as I accept it according to Thy will, do not cast me away…”

That evening St. Anne was sitting under a great tree in her garden reading prayers… begging God to send Joachim home and to let them have at least one child – she was now 44 years.  Then she prayed…for the coming of the Messiah.  Just then the Archangel Gabriel suddenly appeared before her in resplendent form:

“Anne, servant of God, the Lord has heard thy petitions.  If He delays in their fulfillment, it is in order to prepare thee and give to thee much more than thou has asked…He sends me to give thee joyful news: He chooses thee to be the mother of her who is to give birth to the Redeemer of mankind! … now go to the Temple to give thanks to the Lord, and [you] shall meet Joachim at the Golden Gate.”

This time the Holy Spirit moved the priests in the Temple to accept Joachim’s offerings courteously, and several of his friends congratulated him.  Then two priests led him to the Holy Place and left him alone after burning incense on the altar.

While Joachim prayed on his knees with his arms extended, a bright angel appeared and told him that this childlessness was not a disgrace but and honor; for the child who was to be born of his wife would be the most perfect flower of the race of Abraham.

When Zechariah was praying at the Holy of Holies, as was his lot (see Lk 1: 8-9), the Archangel Gabriel appeared to him and foretold him of John’s birth, (see Lk 1: 13-17).  Mind you, Zechariah didn’t handle the news too well and was struck dumb because of it, see Lk 1: 18-20.

The holy couple at the Golden Gate

Thus it happened that near the Golden GateThey hastened toward each other and embraced with tender emotion… As they now renewed their vow to offer their child to His Temple…A cloud of heavenly light enfolded them, while a great number of angels hovered over them…Never had a human couple achieved such supernatural purity of soul.

Thus did Almighty God prepare and purify Mary’s good parents until the great day at last came when the glorious mystery of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God took place.

OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST IS REPORTED TO HAVE SAID TO:

ST BRIDGET OF SWEDEN: Know that is not for your own sake alone that I speak to you, but also for the salvation of all Christians…

VEN. MOTHER MARY OF AGREDA: Many mysteries pertaining to My Mother…are still hidden,…I desire to make known to mortals how much her intercession is worth…If men would seek to please Me…if they would all begin to solicit her intercession from their whole heart, the world would find some relief.”

SISTER ANNA CATHERINE EMMERICH: I give you these visions – and I have ever done so – to prove that I shall be with My Church till the end of days.  But visions alone sanctify no one; you must practice charity, patience, and all the other virtues.”

PRAYER:

Lord, open our eyes and our ears to hear Your Word as we prepare to welcome Your Son into our hearts. Give us the knowledge of Your LOVE that we crave, and help us to bring that LOVE into our wounded and hungry hearts so that we may share it with others.  You Yourself said:

Those whom I love, I reprove and chasten; so be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if any one hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with Me. He who conquers, I will grant him to sit with Me on my throne, as I myself conquered and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear… ~Rev 3:19-22

Therefore…

Have mercy on me, O God, according to Thy steadfast love; according to Thy abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! Behold, Thou desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me. ~Ps 51: 1-2, 6, 10

In Jesus’ name, we humbly pray, AMEN!

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Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ…

Posted by Anne Elizabeth on June 18, 2017

This IS MY BODY…

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all you Dads!!! 🙂

First Published: June 26, 2011

Many had followed my advice on the previous post, and read about the connection of the Holy Trinity and Fatherhood.  So here is the continuation of the story as found in the Precious Body & Blood of Christ Jesus…

Office of Readings: Ordinary Time: Reading I: O Precious and Wonderful Banquet! : St. Thomas Aquinas : Christian Prayer (excerpt, emphasis added, with biblical and catechetical inserts added…)

Since it was the Will of God’s only-begotten Son that men should share in His divinity, He assumed our nature in order that by becoming man, He might make men gods.  Moreover, when He took our flesh He dedicated the whole of its substance to our salvation.  He offered His body to God the Father on the Altar of the Cross as a sacrifice for our reconciliation.

Before the Mormons get all up in arms and claim – See! That angel was right! No, ya’ll were deceived… (see 2Cor 11: 14-15)  When Jesus spoke about making men “sons of God”, He always referred to the resurrection – “…but those who are accounted worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage, for they cannot die anymore, because they are equal to angels and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.” ~ Mt Lk 20: 35-36, emphasis added

And those who followed Him and His commands…

They shall become the peacemakers, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” ~Mt 5:9

He shed His blood for our ransom and purification, so that we might be redeemed from our retched state of bondage and cleansed from all sin.  But to ensure that the memory of so GREAT A GIFT would ABIDE WITH US FOREVER, He left HIS BODY as FOOD and HIS BLOOD as DRINK for the faithful to consume in the form of bread and wine.

It’s no wonder that so many Protestant denominations are now practicing frequent communion – They so desire the EUCHARIST.  Unfortunately for them, until they return to the Apostolic Succession of Christ’s Holy Church, their communion will remain a symbol…

The Eucharist is the “source and summit of the Christian life.”  The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and WORKS of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented towards it.  For in the Blessed Eucharist, is contained the WHOLE spiritual good of the Church, NAMELY CHRIST HIMSELF, our Pasch. ~CCC§1324,emphasis added

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

O precious and wonderful banquet, that brings us salvation and contains all sweetness!  Could anything be of more intrinsic value?  Under the old law it was the flesh of calves and goats that was offered, but here CHRIST HIMSELF, the TRUE GOD, is set before us AS OUR FOOD.  What could be more wonderful than this?

Jesus said to them, “I AM the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst…Your fathers ate manna in the wilderness and they died… I AM the living bread which comes down from heaven; if anyone eats this bread, he will live forever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is MY FLESH…

Truly, truly I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink His blood, you have no life in you; he who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day… He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. ~Jn 6: 35, 49, 51, 53-54, 56, 

No other SACRAMENT has greater healing power; through it sins are purged away, virtues are increased, and the soul is enriched with an abundance of every spiritual gift.  It is offered in the Church for the living and the dead, so that what was INSTITUTED for the SALVATION of [MANY] may be for the benefit of all…  See the Fifth Luminous Mystery

Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “take, eat; this is My Body.” And He took a cup, and when He had given thanks He gave it to them, saying, “drink of it, all of you; for this is My Blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins…” ~Mt 26: 26b-28

…It was the fulfillment of ancient figures and the greatest of ALL His MIRACLES, while for those who were to experience the sorrow of His departure, it was destined to be a unique and abiding consolation.

“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I AM with you always until the end of the age.” ~Mt 28: 18b-20, emphasis added

O Sacrament Most Holy, O Sacrament Divine…

In the Eucharist, we come closer to God than is conceivable and He draws close to us in a moment of breathtaking wonder, if we only open our eyes and our minds to the marvel.  [As St. Thomas Aquinas said], “The Eucharist…is the living evidence, the shining token of God’s overpowering LOVE for us.  The very substance of our hopes has its foundation in this tender familiarity of Christ towards us.  The Eucharist IS PROOF…of God’s passionate love for us and all of our HOPE is grounded in this closeness that we have to God in this amazing MYSTERY.” ~Fr Clifford Stevens, Homily, Holy Thursday, emphasis added.

The mystery of why Jesus gave us His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity for consumption is not all that difficult to understand.  For Jesus said…

And lo, I am with you always, until the close of the age. ~Mt 28:20b

He ascended into heaven after saying that (cf Mk 16:19; Acts 1:9)…

So does that make God a liar?  How could He still be with us if He has ascended into heaven?

Because Jesus did not leave us alone without His presence…

And He took bread, and when He had given thanks, He broke it and gave it to them saying, “This IS  My Body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me…This cup which is poured out for you is the New Covenant in My blood…” ~Lk 22: 19, 20

“Drink of it, all of you; for this is My Blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins…” ~Mt 26: 27c-28, emphasis added, emphasis added.

He gave us HIMSELF in the form of bread and wine that BECOMES HIS BODY and HIS BLOOD so that all who eat of Him worthily will have eternal life within them.  For Jesus told us while He was on earth that…

I AM the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world IS MY FLESH.

Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in you;  he who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life…For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.

He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. ~John 6: 51, 53-54, 55-56, emphasis added.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that…

“The Eucharist is the efficacious sign and sublime cause of that communion in the divine life and that unity of the People of God by which the Church is kept in being. It is the culmination BOTH of God’s action sanctifying the world in Christ AND of the worship men offer to Christ and through Him to the Father in the Holy Spirit.” ~CCC§1325, emphasis added (BOTH/AND…Good Theology!)

Just a “symbol”…

I’ve noticed a lot lately that many of the mainline Protestant churches are practicing a “frequent communion” within their congregations.  However, theirs is merely a “symbol” of Christ and they do treat it as such as they do not have the continued Apostolic Succession; having broken away from Christ’s Church during the 16th century.

And yet the desire for communion with the Living God is so prevalent that I wonder how much longer they can go before demanding to receive the “real deal”…

The Eucharist is “the source and summit of the Christian life.”  “The other sacraments, and indeed all ecclesiastical ministries and works of the apostolate, are bound up with the Eucharist and are oriented toward it. For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ Himself, our Pasch.”  ~CCC§1324, emphasis added.

This is probably why Christ prayed so fervently during His last hours on earth for Christian Unity…

“Father, the hour has come; glorify Thy Son that the Son may glorify Thee,  since Thou hast given Him power over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom Thou hast given Him.  And this is eternal life, that they know Thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent.

 I am praying for them; I am not praying for the world but for those whom Thou hast given Me, for they are Thine; all Mine are Thine, and Thine are Mine, and I AM glorified in them.

Sanctify them in the truth; Thy word is truth. As Thou didst send Me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I consecrate Myself [Holy Eucharist, Last Supper], that they also may be consecrated in TRUTH.

By the consecration the transubstantiation of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ is brought about. Under the consecrated species of bread and wine Christ Himself, living and glorious, is present in a true, real, and substantial manner: His Body and His Blood, with His soul and His divinity (cf. Council of Trent: DS 1640; 1651). ~CCC§1413, in brief.

“I do not pray for these only, but also for those who believe in Me through their word, that they MAY ALL BE ONE; even as Thou, Father, art in Me, and I in Thee, THAT THEY MAY ALSO BE IN US, so that the world may believe that Thou has sent Me.

The glory which Thou hast given Me I have given to them, THAT THEY MAY BE ONE AS WE ARE ONE, I in them and Thou in Me, THAT THEY MAY BECOME PERFECTLY ONE, so that the world may know that Thou hast sent Me and hast loved them even as Thou hast loved me. ~Jn 19: 1-3, 17-19, 20-23, emphasis added.

Did Jesus pray that we may be ONE more than once? 

YES!  He did…which should tell the reader something: This is what God WANTS MOST for His Children.  So what is the hold up?…That’s another post for another day...

Does that mean, if I’m a committed Christian, that I can partake of the Eucharist and fulfill God’s commandment to eat His flesh and drink His blood?

Unfortunately, no, it does not.  Why?  Because, as St. Paul warns ALL of us…

Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the BODY and BLOOD of the Lord. Let a man examine himself [CONFESSION], and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For any one who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment upon himself. ~1 Cor 11: 23-29, emphasis added.

The Catholic Church in the final days…

This applies to Catholics as well as Protestants.  Catholics, if you are partaking of the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of Christ with mortal and even venial sin on our soul you are drinking and eating judgment on yourself.  Protestants, so too will you do the same since the true understanding of the Eucharist has not been provided to you in your spiritual training as Christians.

Because, unfortunately, your forefathers (Luther, 1521; Carlstadt, Munzer, Storch, and Pfeiffer, 1523, Anabaptists; Ulric Zwingli, 1523, Puritans; King Henry VIII, 1535, Anglican Church; John Calvin, 1536, Calvinists; John Knox, 1560, Presbyterians; and the splits continued on from there…),  went the way of many of Christ’s own followers when Jesus concluded His discourse on why He was the Living Bread come down from heaven…

Many of His disciples, when they heard it said, “This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?” … After this many of His disciples drew back and no longer went about with Him. ~Jn 6: 60, 66

It was only the 12 that stayed, excepting Judas Iscariot who later betrayed the Lord, who then became the first Bishops of His Church and conferred others to take their place (see book of Acts).  They were there at the Last Supper when Jesus consecrated Himself and made the bread and wine into His Body and Blood. 

THEY were the ones Jesus gave the power to “do this in remembrance of Me”, and thus continue the promise of Jesus that He would never leave us.  And like so many Protestant ministers over the years have discovered when they have sought the meaning behind Jesus’ words in John 6…

What material food produces in our bodily life, Holy Communion wonderfully achieves in our spiritual life. Communion with the flesh of the risen Christ, a flesh “given life and giving life through the Holy Spirit,” preserves, increases, and renews the life of grace received at Baptism. This growth in Christian life needs the nourishment of Eucharistic Communion, the bread for our pilgrimage until the moment of death, when it will be given to us as viaticum. ~CCC§1392, emphasis added.

O Sacrament Most Holy, O Sacrament Divine…

So many have returned home to Rome…But for those of us who are home, let us always remember the privilege we have when we attend the Holy Mass, the Sacrifice of Christ on Calvary relived.  Let us always keep in mind, this IS GOD’S GIFT to US and must therefore be treated with UTMOST RESPECT and DIGNITY.  For as the Catechism also reminds us, and as we celebrated the Holy Trinity last Sunday…

There is no limit or measure to this essentially divine forgiveness, (Cf. Mt 18:21-22; Lk 17:3-4), whether one speaks of “sins” as in Luke (11:4), or “debts” as in Matthew (6:12). We are always debtors: “Owe no one anything, except to love one another.” (Rom 13:8) The communion of the Holy Trinity is the source and criterion of truth in every relationship. It is lived out in prayer, above all in the Eucharist (Cf. Mt 5:23-24; 1 Jn 3:19-24).

We are given LIFE not death, SALVATION not condemnation, TRUTH not falsehood as Christ radically transforms us by His radical transformation of Himself or as someone once said…

We come today to that solemn moment when something of Eternity, something of the sacred sanctuary where God dwells in His total otherness, breaks through our world, and we come face to face with the Living God.  We celebrate today the institution of the Eucharist, that astonishing gift that Jesus left each one of us, His Presence among us [cf Mt 28:20b], as a living memorial of His Passion and Death, and as the living evidence of His care and concern for us, who often get so lost in the business of living we can forget how precious we are to our Creator. ~ Fr Clifford Stevens, Homily, Holy Thursday, emphasis added.

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)

So as you approach Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament of His Precious Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity TODAY and every time you go to Mass, perhaps it would be advisable to the worshiper of Christ to prepare yourself as best you can with the help of one of the Church’s truly great and holy priest, St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)…

Almighty and ever-living God, I approach the sacrament of Thine only-begotten Son, our Lord, Jesus Christ.  I come sick to the doctor of Life (cf Mt 9:12-13), unclean to the fountain of mercy, blind to the radiance of eternal light, and poor and needy to the Lord of heaven and earth.  

Therefore, I ask in the abundance of Thy great generosity that Thou may heal my sickness, wash away my defilement, enlighten my blindness, enrich my poverty, and clothe my nakedness, so that I may receive the Bread of angels, the King of kings, the Lord of lords, with that purpose and intention which is expedient for the salvation of my soul.

Grant me, I beseech Thee, that I may not only receive the Sacrament of the Body and Blood of the Lord, but also its reality and power.  O most kind God, grant that I may receive the Body of Thine only-begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, which He received from the Virgin Mary, so that I may be worthy to be incorporated into His Mystical Body, and numbered among His members.

O most loving Father, grant that I may contemplate for all eternity the revealed face of Thy beloved Son, whom I intend to receive now under the veil of this Sacrament.  Who liveth and reigneth with Thee, world without end. Amen.

Prayer in Pdf for Printing: Prayer Before Mass

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