Search
  • Sarah Raad

Eucharist

The Hidden Christ is the light of the world… held tightly, in the palm of my hand…

The Eucharist (Francisco de Zurbaran)

I was thinking about what I should write today and sat down to get my thoughts so that I could put them onto the paper, and nothing that I was planning to say would come out right at all.


The harder I tried to write about Mercy, the more my thoughts jumbled into an unmanageable tangle. And so, as I sat here, staring at the screen, I did the only thing left to me…


I closed my eyes and waited for the thoughts that I was supposed to be thinking about today to come into my mind today.


And then, like magic – or more likely, Divine Inspiration – I remembered some beautiful lines from Saint Faustina – after all, it was about mercy that I was planning to write, and so it seemed only fitting for me to reflect a little on the attitude of this beautiful saint…


But when I thought of the lines that I had recently read, I remembered not her words about mercy, but those about the Blessed Eucharist.


And suddenly – as though a dam had overflowed in flooding rain – the words cascaded onto the page like a waterfall.


In her Diary Entry 1037 Saint Faustina wrote…


“I find myself so weak that were it not for Holy Communion I would fall continually. One thing alone sustains me, and that is Holy Communion. From it I draw my strength; in it is all my comfort. I fear life on days when I do not receive Holy Communion. I fear my own self. Jesus concealed in the Host is everything to me. From the tabernacle I draw strength, power, courage and light. Here, I seek consolation in time of anguish. I would not know how to give glory to God if I did not have the Eucharist in my heart.”


These words were so beautiful, but the excerpt was long, and so, I thought about cutting it back for the sake of brevity… but what could I have removed?


Should I have removed the part about the saving power of the Eucharist, about the power of the Hidden Christ to sustain us and make us strong? I thought about it, but without the sustaining power of the Hidden Christ, the Eucharist would be of little value to us – after all, Christ came to call sinners. And, in the words of someone anonymous who is infinitely more wise than me, the Church – where we receive our Blessed Lord – is more a hospital for sinners than a museum for saints…


Perhaps, instead, I should have cut back the section on fear and comfort. Saint Faustina feared for her salvation when she did not receive the Hidden Christ… But how could I cut those words out? I find such comfort in this Blessed miracle myself, that to remove this observation of Saint Faustina would be too much to bear.


Then I thought about the part where she speaks of how Christ is everything to her, hidden in the Eucharist. But I could not remove that either – for Christ really is everything…


And He is her teacher – in the Eucharist, Christ teaches Saint Faustina to give Him praise… He teaches us too…


Saint Faustina was not the only person to be in love with the Eucharist. There are many others…


The Venerable Bishop Van Thuan was a Vietnamese Bishop who was arrested and imprisoned in Vietnam in 1975, for refusing to denounce his faith. He spent the following 9 years incarcerated in solitary confinement. He asked his friends to label a small bottle of wine as medicine for a stomach ailment, and his gaolers provided it to him when he complained of stomach pain. Each night, he kept a small piece of bread from his evening meal, and a few drops of the “stomach ailment” wine with a drop of water in the palm of his hand. He later described those evening masses – where he was alone and in the dark with his Beloved – as the most beautiful Masses of his life.


A contemporary of Bishop Thuan’s was the Latvian Bishop Boleslas Sloskans who was arrested in Communist Russia soon after his ordination, gaoled for seventeen years in Soviet prisons and exiled for over thirty years. He soaked raisins in water to ferment them to make wine and used scraps of bread as for the Eucharistic host. He hid the Hidden Christ under a tree root in utmost secrecy each day for the other prisoners to receive the Hidden Christ secretly.

Pope Francis said, “The body of Christ is the true food, in the form of bread, able to give life, eternal life, because the substance of this bread is LOVE.”

For those political prisoners, the Hidden Christ was their daily bread…


For me, who am a prisoner of sin, the Hidden Christ should be my daily bread…


And yet, as Saint Claude de la Colombiere reminded us… “How few rejoice to possess the means of honouring Him as He deserves!... If only we knew the treasures we hold in our hands.”


And Saint Faustina would say… “I spend every free moment at the feet of the hidden God. He is my Master; I ask Him about everything; I speak to Him about everything. Here I obtain strength and light; here I learn everything; here I am given light on how to act toward my neighbour.


For He is our everything…


He is the Word incarnate, the Word made flesh, Perfect LOVE, Perfect God… Body, Soul and Divinity…


The Hidden Christ is the light of the world… held tightly, in the palm of my most ungrateful hand…


Right there… in the palm of my grubby little hand…


For with prayer, I stand on Holy Ground where everything is clear. Here. At the Foot of the Cross.

10 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Donkey