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Monday after Quinquagesima

Visiting Jesus in the blessed sacrament - 2

From book "Spiritual Readings for all days of the year from texts of Saint Alphonsus of Liguori"... Let us be careful to profit by the presence of Je...

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Spiritual Readings

Saint Alphonsus

Let us be careful to profit by the presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Our hearts should remain with Him to burn continually, and with greater splendour than the lights and lamps that adorn the Altar. But, alas! the ingratitude of men towards Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament made Him complain to His servant, St. Margaret Mary Alocoque, to whom He showed His Divine Heart burning with flames of love for men. Jesus said to her: "Behold this Heart that has loved men so tenderly, and has reserved nothing, but has consumed itself in order to show its love for men; yet in return I receive nothing but ingratitude and contempt from the greater number of men in this Sacrament. But what displeases Me most is, that some of these ungrateful ones are hearts consecrated to Me." In these last words Jesus spoke of those who dwell in the same house with Him, and yet draw but little profit from His Presence. If He were to come into your church once a year, and to remain only for a single day, surely all would contend with one another in paying homage to Him, and in remaining in His loving company; and will you leave Him alone, and seldom visit Him because in order to see you more frequently in His Presence, He, in His goodness, remains continually with you?

If you have hitherto been negligent in visiting Jesus in the Tabernacle, I entreat you henceforth to avail yourself of the great treasure that you have in the most Holy Sacrament. Sister Anne of the Cross, who had been Countess of Feria, and a Spanish lady of high rank, after being a widow for twenty-four years entered the Order of St. Clare, in Montilla. She procured a cell, from which she had a view of the Altar of the Blessed Sacrament, and there she generally remained day and night. Being asked how she was employed during so many hours that she spent before the Blessed Sacrament, she replied: "I would remain there for all eternity. How am I employed before Jesus in the Blessed Eucharist? I thank Him, I love Him, I ask His graces." Behold an excellent means of drawing great fruit from your visits to the Blessed Sacrament.

First, thank Jesus Christ. How thankful you are to relatives that come from a distance to visit you! And will you not thank Jesus Christ Who descends from Heaven, not only to visit you, but also to remain always with you? First of all in your Visit, enliven your Faith and adore your Spouse in the Sacrament: thank His great goodness in coming to remain on the Altar for the love of you.

Secondly, love Jesus. St. Philip Neri, when he saw the most holy Viaticum brought into his room, was all on fire with holy love, and exclaimed: "Behold my Love! Behold my Love!" Do you say the same when you remain before the Holy Tabernacle. Consider that your Jesus, shut up in that prison of love, is burning with love for you. To St. Catherine of Sienna He appeared one day in the Blesesed Sacrament in the form of a fiery furnace, and the Saint was astonished that the flames that issued from it had not filled the hearts of all men with the fire of Divine love. If, when you remain in His Presence, you wish to please Him, repeat acts of love, offering yourself to Him in a special manner.

Thirdly, ask Jesus for His grace. Blessed Henry Suso used to say that it is in the Holy Sacrament that Jesus hears most readily the prayers of those who visit Him, and that it is there He dispenses His graces most abundantly. The Venerable Father Balthasar Alvarez once saw Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament with His hands full of graces, but found no one to whom He could impart them, because there was no one to ask them. You say that you cannot remain in the Presence of Jesus Christ, because you know not what to do before Him, or what to say. O God! And why do you not employ yourself in asking the graces of which you stand in need? Beg of Jesus to give you strength to resist temptations, to correct the faults into which you always relapse, to rescue you from the passion that keeps you in chains, and hinders you from giving yourself entirely to God. Entreat Him to give you aid to suffer all insults and contradictions in peace, to increase in your heart His Divine love, and entreat Him particularly to make you live always united with His holy will. When you feel disturbed on account of having committed any fault, go instantly to the Holy Sacrament to ask pardon, and then calm your mind. When you receive any offence, or when you meet a heavy cross, go and offer it to Jesus Christ and ask His aid to embrace it with resignation. Oh! if we all acted in this manner and knew how to avail ourselves of the Presence of Jesus, we should all become Saints. Let it be our care to become Saints by adopting this practice.

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Visiting Jesus in the blessed sacrament - 1

Quinquagesima Sunday