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April 24, 2017  

(Mat 26:26-28) And whilst they were at supper, Jesus took bread and blessed and broke and gave to his disciples and said: Take ye and eat. This is my body. And taking the chalice, he gave thanks and gave to them, saying: Drink ye all of this. For this is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many unto remission of sins.

LOVE MADE VISIBLE: A Pastoral Letter on Adoration of the Most Holy Eucharist by Bishop James Conley

CNA: Bishop Conley: Eucharistic adoration can transform our Church

Eucharistic adoration offers a powerful chance to encounter Christ’s love in silence and humility, and that experience can transform our hearts, both individually and as a Church, said Bishop James D. Conley of Lincoln, Neb. in a new pastoral letter.


“Love is selfless sacrifice, and sacrifice is the language of love. Love is the gift of ourselves to our beloved. And Christ made a gift of himself – he gave us his body and blood – poured himself out for our salvation, when he conquered death by dying and rising again,” Bishop Conley said. “Christ gave us his body and blood, as an act of love, so that we could know the love of God.”

“Before he conquered death forever, in a sacrifice of love, Jesus gave himself to the Church in the gift of the Eucharist,” the bishop reflected.

His pastoral letter “Love Made Visible” was released for Holy Thursday, when the Catholic liturgy marks the Last Supper. The letter reflects upon the Gospel accounts of the Last Supper and draws on the writings of Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI on the Eucharist.

“In the Eucharist, the apostles received a share in Christ’s own identity: they became a part of his passion and death, and they became a part of his Resurrection,” Bishop Conley said. “The Eucharist unified the apostles to Jesus Christ in the bonds of his sacrificial love.”

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VIA UNIVERSALIS
: From the Jerusalem Catecheses

The bread of Heaven and the cup of salvation

On the night he was betrayed our Lord Jesus Christ took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples and said: “Take, eat: this is my body.” He took the cup, gave thanks and said: “Take, drink: this is my blood.” Since Christ himself has declared the bread to be his body, who can have any further doubt? Since he himself has said quite categorically, This is my blood, who would dare to question it and say that it is not his blood?

  Therefore, it is with complete assurance that we receive the bread and wine as the body and blood of Christ. His body is given to us under the symbol of bread, and his blood is given to us under the symbol of wine, in order to make us by receiving them one body and blood with him. Having his body and blood in our members, we become bearers of Christ and sharers, as Saint Peter says, in the divine nature.

  Once, when speaking to the Jews, Christ said: Unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you shall have no life in you. This horrified them and they left him. Not understanding his words in a spiritual way, they thought the Saviour wished them to practise cannibalism.

  Under the old covenant there was showbread, but it came to an end with the old dispensation to which it belonged. Under the new covenant there is bread from heaven and the cup of salvation. These sanctify both soul and body, the bread being adapted to the sanctification of the body, the Word, to the sanctification of the soul.

  Do not, then, regard the eucharistic elements as ordinary bread and wine: they are in fact the body and blood of the Lord, as he himself has declared. Whatever your senses may tell you, be strong in faith.

  You have been taught and you are firmly convinced that what looks and tastes like bread and wine is not bread and wine but the body and the blood of Christ. You know also how David referred to this long ago when he sang: Bread gives strength to man’s heart and makes his face shine with the oil of gladness. Strengthen your heart, then, by receiving this bread as spiritual bread, and bring joy to the face of your soul.

  May purity of conscience remove the veil from the face of your soul so that by contemplating the glory of the Lord, as in a mirror, you may be transformed from glory to glory in Christ Jesus our Lord. To him be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Ladder of Divine Ascent excerpt: Step 11- "On talkativeness and silence"

5. The friend of silence draws near to God and, by secretly conversing with Him, is enlightened by God.
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