The Real Presence – as received and believed -Faith of the Early Church

ST. CLEMENT OF ALEXANDRIA

St. Clement of Alexandria studied under Pantaenus. He later succeeded him as the director of the school of catechumens in Alexandria, Egypt around the year 200 A.D.,
“The Blood of the Lord, indeed, is twofold. There is His corporeal Blood, by which we are redeemed from corruption; and His spiritual Blood, that with which we are anointed. That is to say, to drink the Blood of Jesus is to share in His immortality. The strength of the Word is the Spirit just as the blood is the strength of the body. Similarly, as wine is blended with water, so is the Spirit with man. The one, the Watered Wine, nourishes in faith, while the other, the Spirit, leads us on to immortality. The union of both, however, – of the drink and of the Word, – is called the Eucharist, a praiseworthy and excellent gift. Those who partake of it in faith are sanctified in body and in soul. By the will of the Father, the divine mixture, man, is mystically united to the Spirit and to the Word.”,
-“The Instructor of the Children”. [2,2,19,4] ante 202 A.D.,
“The Word is everything to a child: both Father and Mother, both Instructor and Nurse. ‘Eat My Flesh,’ He says, ‘and drink My Blood.’ The Lord supplies us with these intimate nutrients. He delivers over His Flesh, and pours out His Blood; and nothing is lacking for the growth of His children. O incredible mystery!”,
-“The Instructor of the Children” [1,6,41,3] ante 202 A.D..

True Presence

Prayer At Adoration

You, My Lord, light up my darkness.  I join my voice to the bright “Hosannas” of adoring angels. With the elect of Heaven here at my side, I call upon these holy saints and angels to remember before the throne of God all who labor in Your vineyard. Make me Your monstrance that I may carry You in my heart and be Your light to all I meet today.  Amen.

by Joann Nelander

Let Me Entertain You

My pastor commented on a quasi-supernatural event at our church as an example of how we are so spectacularly entertained by new media and extravaganzas of the 21 century, that we seem to conclude God had better produce better productions, if He wants to keep us.

Seems a lady noticed the face of Jesus in the veil before the tabernacle (shadows and light / a wink from the Almighty?) Well by the next day, 800 people had trooped into the church midweek to see the marvel.

As the liturgical rubrics of the season would have it, though, the veil had to be changed to a purple one, and so it was. How many people visited the next day?

The score:

Signs and Wonders – 800

Real Presence – 0

Realization of Truth

Eternity without You is Hell.

Carmelite tells of Incense of the Heart

Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament

Image by Lawrence OP via Flickr

Body & Soul

There are moments when the physical and the spiritual harmonize in an astounding, yet simple symphonic moment.

That just happened to me.

You see, our Chapel is connected to our convent. So yesterday evening as I was walking in from the gardens, I was met by the unmistakable fragrance of incense, in the hallway of the convent. I’ve probably had this experience a hundred times, but last night it was very moving.

Incense is a sign of our adoration of God. We use it every day in our convents during Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction. It is a sign not only of our prayers rising before Him, but the total holocaust of our lives that we offer, holding nothing back, being totally consumed in the Flames of His Love.

But I was not in a particularly sacred space. It was a hallway. Actually, there was a bathroom right by where I smelled the incense. I pass through this area countless times every day. I probably know every nook and cranny. It could not be more familiar, or mundane for that matter.

Despite all this (because of all this?) I encountered a reminder of God’s presence. He is here. Right in the midst of my everyday “stuff.” A routine I follow day in and day out. Surroundings that I know like the back of my hand. Steps I could take blindfolded. Last night I was stopped in my tracks and made to reflect, “He is here. He is always here with me.”

I smelled it with my nose as I looked around with my eyes at what I could reach out and touch and know so well. And my spirit rose up within me. Just a brief moment, but deeply profound. Again, physical and spiritual intertwined in an inseparable and graced union.

My point is not to make you jealous of the beautiful life we have in Carmel. That hallway will be bustling today with sisters headed here and there, busy about the Father’s business. It will be moped later this week and the toilets will be scrubbed. Still, daily the perfume from the altar will penetrate this space, making it holy. May this same fragrance fill your lives, your very ordinary, yet anointed, lives.

Prayer At Adoration

You, My Lord, light up my darkness.  I join my voice to the bright “Hosannas” of adoring angels. With the elect of Heaven here at my side, I call upon these holy saints and angels to remember before the throne of God all who labor in Your vineyard. Make me Your monstrance that I may carry You in my heart and be Your light to all I meet today.  Amen.

by Joann Nelander