Les Femmes

As we continue to deal with limits placed on our parishes, let us reflect on St. John Vianney, patron of parish priests. He knew firsthand the wiles of the devil who foments division and hatred. The saint’s solution? Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. Ponder his words from, Eucharistic Meditations: Extracts from the Writings and Instruction of St. John Vianney.

Jesus chose to remain among us: “Knowing that the time has come to return to his Father, he cannot bring himself to leave us alone on the earth among so many enemies who all seek nothing but our ruin. He wants us to have the blessedness of finding him whenever we will; and by this great Sacrament he pledges himself to remain in the midst of us, day and night, to be our Father, Consoler, and Friend. Happier than those who lived during his mortal life, when he was only in one place. We find him today in every corner of the world; and this happiness is promised to us till the end of time. Oh, tremendous love of a God for his creatures! How great is the tenderness of the Father!”

On keeping Sundays holy: “The third commandment is most important. You should keep the Sundays by devoutly serving God....Behold, all the week men gather, lend, buy, sell. Well and good; but all that is for the body. Arrange, then, to make a good feast once a week for your immortal soul....The feast of the holy table is the good God in us. The great sages of antiquity could not understand this extraordinary thing; they said that God was too great to become incarnate that he might give himself to us. It was because they did not know to what lengths the goodness of God goes. But we know it. What a knowledge! God has come into ourselves, and we can reach to him. Ah! If we would, we might be angels on earth.”

Holy Communion unites us to Christ: “‘He who receives Jesus Christ in Holy Communion,’ says St. Cyril, ‘is so united to him that they are like two pieces of melted wax, which end by becoming one piece.’ By Communion, indeed, Jesus Christ makes us all his own body and identifies us with himself as the body with the head. He is not content with showing himself to us. He puts himself into our hands, into our mouth, mingling his substance with our substance, that we may become one spirit with him. One Communion acts on the soul like bellows on a fire which has begun to go out, but where there are yet plenty of embers; we blow, and the hearth is lit up. One Communion well made is enough to inflame the soul with the love of God and make it forsake earthly things....When you have received our Lord, you feel your soul purified, bathed in the love of God....He who comes to Communion loses himself in God as a drop of water in the ocean. They can be no more separated. It is no small thing, when you think of it, to be lost for eternity in that abyss of love.”

Frequent, worthy Communion will transform us: “Go to Communion to receive the graces which you need: humility, patience, purity...go to the holy table to unite yourselves to Jesus Christ, that he may change you into other Christs. For if you receive Communion often and worthily, your thoughts, your desires, your actions, all your undertakings will have the same end as those of Jesus Christ when he was on earth. You will love God, you will be touched by your neighbor’s troubles, spiritual and temporal, and you will not think for a moment of attaching yourselves to earth; henceforth in heart and mind you will live only for heaven.”

Table of Contents