Pope Benedict XVI on the Mass, the Eucharist, and Eucharistic Adoration


Receiving the Eucharist means adoring Him whom we receive. Only in this way do we become one with Him, and are given, as it were, a foretaste of the beauty of the heavenly liturgy. The act of adoration outside Mass prolongs and intensifies all that takes place during the liturgical celebration itself.

Link

More on this, by Doug Lawrence: The reality of the Presence of Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist is probably the single most significant difference between the Protestant and Catholic faith traditions.

For the last 500 years or so, Protestants of all kinds, due to their voluntary separation from the true church of Jesus Christ, and their rejection of the ministerial priesthood, as well as many other related Catholic doctrines and dogmas, have concentrated on trying to develop a relationship with Jesus through the use of the Bible, fore-going the authentic, personal, grace-giving sacramental union that Jesus had already prepared and prescribed for us, while he still walked the earth.

It is only through the authentic sacraments of the church that we, in this life, are enabled and empowered to encounter the risen and triumphant Jesus Christ, in a way that even our fallen, myopic humanity can actually touch, comprehend, and assimilate.

While any attempt to develop a relationship with Jesus Christ is commendable … there can be no doubt that a long-distance, “pen pal” type of approach cannot compare to the awesome and all encompassing, physical and spiritual “hug” we receive from Jesus himself, whenever we Catholics receive him, in the holiest Sacrament of the Altar.

Catholics have always understood that the divine inheritance we presently receive through baptism in Christ, is infinitely richer than anything we can ever hope to read in any book. Yes … even the God-inspired, Holy Bible.

Catholics have been blessed, from the earliest days, to personally encounter Jesus Christ, in both a physical and spiritual way, through our regular reception of the sacraments. Hence, as a Catholic, Jesus’ flesh and blood already nourishes my flesh, while his supernatural grace simultaneously refreshes my soul.

To put it simply, the only way most of us can hope to experience true holiness in this life is by personally encountering the Holy One … Jesus Christ … in and through the grace-giving sacraments that he personally instituted … for that express purpose.

Sure, I love to read the Bible … the written Word of God
but, for the very practical reasons already mentioned, I love to eat the flesh and drink the blood of Jesus Christ, who is
God, the Word … much, much more.

From the “old” Baltimore Catechism:

Q. Why did God make you?

A. God made me to know Him, to love Him, and to serve Him in this world, and to be happy with Him forever in the next.

Hopefully, on the great day of the Marriage Supper of the Lamb (Revelation 19:9) thanks to the church, the sacraments, and of course, Jesus … he and I will “know” each other, in the most intimate way possible … as the here-to-fore “Mystical” Body of Christ reaches its ultimate, divine potential … in and through an incredibly awesome, glorified and eternal, one-flesh union with our Holy, Creator God.

And that is precisely what the highest form of the biblical term “to know” actually means.

The Seven Daily Habits of Holy People


There are various ways to come to know Jesus. We are going to speak briefly about some of them in this article. You want to come to know, love and serve Jesus the same way you learn to love and stay in love with anybody: your spouse, family members, and close friends, i.e. by spending a considerable amount of time with him on a regular and, in this case, daily basis. The payoff, if you will, is the only true happiness in this life and the vision of God in the next. There are no easy substitutes. Sanctification is a work of a lifetime and it requires our determined effort to cooperate with God’s sanctifying grace coming through the sacraments.

The seven daily habits that I propose to you are the morning offering, spiritual reading (New Testament and a spiritual book suggested to you by your spiritual advisor), the Holy Rosary, Holy Mass and Communion, at least fifteen minutes of mental prayer, the recitation of the Angelus at noon, and a brief examination of conscience at night.

These are the principal means to achieve holiness. If you are a person who wants to bring Christ to others through your friendship, these are the instruments by which you store up the spiritual energy that will enable you to so. Apostolic action without the sacraments and a deep solid interior life will in the long run be ineffective. You can be sure that all the saints incorporated in one way or another all of these habits into their daily routine. Your goal is to be like them, contemplatives in the middle of the world.

Read more by Fr. McCloskey

Going to hell?

Q: Going to hell?  What are the real things that people do to make them go to hell?

A: Many people fail to understand the importance of becoming a member of the authentic, universal (Catholic) Church, through baptism, and even if they do, they often fail to participate in a way that might empower them to eventually come to truly know and love God, and begin to understand and appreciate his overall plan.

As a result, people often fail to learn how to deal charitably with one another.

Taken to its’ logical conclusion … over an extended period of time … that just might do it.

Will many Christians ever get past salvation and into understanding the kingdom of God?

Q: Will many Christians ever get past salvation and into understanding the kingdom of God?

A: Catholics “got past” mere salvation around 1600 years ago.

That’s probably why so many protestants seem to have such a hard time figuring what Catholics believe … and why.

The simple fact is, once baptized, works DO matter, since the foundation of the Kingdom of God is not built on good intentions, but on the heroic works of Jesus Christ, and all those who, according to his grace, choose to know, love, and faithfully follow him.

Christians, how do you love God when you’ve never met him in a literal sense?

communionfirstholy.jpg

This was the basis of a recent question, posted on the Yahoo Answers website:

Christians, how do you love God when you’ve never met him in a literal sense?

My reply: 

Catholics have a definite edge in that regard, since we “know” Jesus … in the biblical sense … body, blood, soul, and divinity … from about the age of 8 … through the blessed sacrament that Jesus instituted for that express purpose.

In one aspect, this works as a supernatural “souvenir” testifying to the reality of the earlier, original events (in this case, the Passover Meal, the Last Supper, the subsequent Crucifixion of Christ)  permitting one to participate in them personally, and much more completely.

And for another, eating the real and substantial body and blood of Christ results in a level of divine intimacy that is difficult or impossible for non-Catholics to comprehend.

The old saying, “The way to a person’s heart is through the stomach.” isn’t far from the truth.

communioncuphost.jpg