This sacrament confers grace spiritually together with the virtue of charity. Hence Damascene (De Fide Orth. iv) compares this sacrament to the burning coal which Isaiah saw (Isaiah 6:6): “For a live ember is not simply wood, but wood united to fire; so also the bread of communion is not simple bread but bread united with the Godhead.” But as Gregory observes in a Homily for Pentecost, “God’s love is never idle; for, wherever it is it does great works.” And consequently through this sacrament, as far as its power is concerned, not only is the habit of grace and of virtue bestowed, but it is furthermore aroused to act, according to 2 Corinthians 5:14: “The charity of Christ presseth us.” Hence it is that the soul is spiritually nourished through the power of this sacrament, by being spiritually gladdened, and as it were inebriated with the sweetness of the Divine goodness, according to Canticles 5:1: “Eat, O friends, and drink, and be inebriated, my dearly beloved.” ~St. Thomas Aquinas
“Today the liturgy invites us to contemplate Mary, taken up body and soul into heaven. By a special privilege, she was enriched by divine grace from the moment of her conception, and Christ, who ascended to the right hand of the Father, opened the doors of his kingdom to her, first among human creatures. Now from heaven, where the Queen of the angels and saints is crowned, the Mother of God and of the Church is close to the Christian people before whom she shines as the new and immaculate woman (who) mediated for the guilt of the first woman.” – St. Pope John Paul II
“The most deadly poison of our times is indifference. And this happens, although the praise of God should know no limits. Let us strive, therefore, to praise Him to the greatest extent of our powers.” ~St. Maximilian Kolbe
“In all that happens, good or bad, Christ is present. So instead of resignation and worry, we should always trust that things will change, even if we have to go through hell first. For the purpose of life is Christ. God has promised to re-create heaven and earth and bring the whole world into the light of the Savior. “I am making everything new!” (Rev. 21:1–5). This is our hearts’ deepest longing, that Christ reconciles the whole cosmos. He is the ruler over all, and his light will fill the entire universe.” ~Christoph Freiedrich Blumhardt, The Gospel of God’s Reign
I come, O Lord, unto Thy sanctuary to see the life and food of my soul. As I hope in Thee, O Lord, inspire me with that confidence which brings me to Thy holy mountain. Permit me, Divine Jesus, to come closer to Thee, that my whole soul may do homage to the greatness of Thy majesty; that my heart, with its tenderest affections, may acknowledge Thine infinite love; that my memory may dwell on the admirable mysteries here renewed every day, and that the sacrifice of my whole being may accompany Thine. Amen
Love your enemies. Too many Christians turn this into a formula that is easily misunderstood. That is, they say, “The Christian must love everyone.” But if we ask how such a universal love should look in the concrete, we very quickly see that it does not work — or better, it can only work if it remains a mere feeling, pure emotion, a diffuse love for humanity.
The Bible is much too realistic to talk of such misty dreams. The Bible says we are to love our neighbors and also our enemies — meaning those we really have something to do with and not some millions of people we can easily love because they are so beautifully distant from us. ~Gerhard Lohfink, No Irrelevant Jesus
In the Eucharist, Jesus chooses to be small, weak, vulnerable, breakable, dependent on the instrumentality of a priest, utterly simple and available to all who approach him.
In the Eucharist, Jesus is infinitely patient, waiting for us to come to him; tolerant, though we neglect or take him for granted in this sacrament; long-suffering, even when not receiving the respect or reverence he deserves.
In fact, Jesus in the Eucharist is everything we might most want to avoid. We tend to prefer strength, power, independence, appreciation, attention and human respect.
….Jesus may be asking us to Love one another as He has loved us, and will forever love us, in the Eucharist. ~From the St. Joseph’s Dwelling Place blog
The event of the Transfiguration marks a decisive moment in the ministry of Jesus. It is a revelatory event which strengthens the faith in the disciples’ hearts, prepares them for the tragedy of the Cross and prefigures the glory of the Resurrection. This mystery is constantly relived by the Church, the people on its way to the eschatological encounter with its Lord. Like the three chosen disciples, the Church contemplates the transfigured face of Christ in order to be confirmed in faith and to avoid being dismayed at his disfigured face on the Cross. In both cases, she is the Bride before her Spouse, sharing in his mystery and surrounded by his light. This light shines on all the Church’s children. All are equally called to follow Christ, to discover in him the ultimate meaning of their lives, until they are able to say with the Apostle: “For to me to live is Christ” (Philippians 1:21).
But those who are called to the consecrated life have a special experience of the light which shines forth from the Incarnate Word. For the profession of the evangelical counsels makes them a kind of sign and prophetic statement for the community of the brethren and for the world; consequently they can echo in a particular way the ecstatic words spoken by Peter: “Lord, it is well that we are here” (Mt 17:4). These words bespeak the Christocentric orientation of the whole Christian life. But they also eloquently express the radical nature of the vocation to the consecrated life: how good it is for us to be with you, to devote ourselves to you, to make you the one focus of our lives! Truly those who have been given the grace of this special communion of love with Christ feel as it were caught up in his splendour: he is “the fairest of the sons of men” (Ps 45:2), the One beyond compare. ~St. John Paul II, Vita Consecrata, Paragraph 15
The message of Jesus is folly, in human terms. Anybody who spoke like Jesus today would be considered mad, only good for a psychiatrist. His message is not for the wise; those who think that they have the power, strength and knowledge to transform the world will not understand that the folly of His message is the gift of the Spirit and the transformation of their hearts. The message is for the wounded and the little ones, the poor ones, those who are awaiting the liberator and the good news. The deeply wounded person will always recognise the liberator, because the presence of Jesus will free him, bring him peace and strength and courage, and although he cannot understand the meaning of the little piece of bread and the wine, he knows that he needs them to be transformed. ~Jean Vanier, Be Not Afraid