Marthe Robin

December 24, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Marthe Robin is a name unknown to many. She was born to a peasant family in Châteauneuf-de-Galaure (Drôme), in France, on March 13, 1902. She grew up and lived in her parents home her entire life.

In 1925, she started to experience the pains of the Passion. In 1928, a serious neurological illness left her hardly able to move, and even to swallow as her throat muscles were also affected. By this time, she was also almost completely blind and lived in a world of darkness. In 1930, she received the stigmata, the visible signs of the wounds of Christ. Every Friday, she would relive Christ’s sufferings during the Passion. At night, she could not sleep. The ecstasy would last until Monday or Tuesday.

One other thing needs to be mentioned. She was, now, also not able to eat or drink. For over fifty years, according to numerous witnesses whose testimony was submitted to the Vatican, she lived on the Bread of Life alone, the Eucharist.

There have been others who have lived only on the Eucharist, including Alexandrina Maria da Costa whose story has also appeared on this website. She underwent comprehensive testing by a team of doctors in a hospital for forty days. They confirmed she did not eat or drink during that time and, defying the laws of biology, underwent no changes in body weight, blood pressure or other measurables. Alexandrina Maria da Costa lived on the Eucharist alone for over 13 years.

Marthe Rodin did it for over fifty.

She died in 1981.

Source: “The Eucharistic Miracles of the World,” a Vatican international exhibition, as reported by The Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration and Association,

How a Pagan Prays

December 23, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Fr. Richard Heilman is a priest in the Madison, Wisconsin area. He was ordained in 1988, after receiving degrees in divinity and theology from the University of St. Mary of the Lake, in Mundelein, Illinois. He maintains a website called RomanCatholicMan (, on which a friend of his, Mark “Doc” Kimble related a story.

It seems Mr. Kimble was a self-described “pagan.” Sometimes, when out in nature, he would put himself into a meditative state, open his heart, and ask the elements, “what are you trying to tell me.” That was what he understood as prayer.

Living in Atlanta, he had been renting a room from his boss and his wife. They were into “Catholic stuff.” One day, Carmella said to him that she needed a ride to Christ the King Cathedral on Peachtree Street. She needed to cover a Holy Hour for someone who was sick. Mark had no idea what that was, but said he would take her.

He determined to pray there with her, thinking sarcastically to himself, “I’ll show these Catholics how a pagan prays. When they arrived, he proceeded to pray as he typically did out in nature. He noticed that Carmella was looking at something at the front of the chapel. He had no idea what It was. To him, in the monstrance, It had some appearance of a tree.

Then he heard, interiorly, “This is the Tree of Life.” Following this, he experienced some private revelations concerning a time in Yosemite National Park when he was lost. Symbols and signs from that time were now made apparent to him. He was given a message, “I saved you through the agency of an angel then, and I am here now.

He says that, at the end of that hour, he walked out of the chapel as a “Catholic by desire.” He had previously regarded the Catechism of the Catholic Church as the mere “inventions of men.” After this hour, he says, “it all began to make sense.”

Though less dramatic, this story shares some similarities with that of Andre Frossard recounted on this website in the past. A firm unbeliever changes completely after a short period of time in the company of the Real Presence.


St. Gertrude and the Sacrament of the Altar

December 22, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once, the Lord told St. Gertrude, “Know that I communicate Myself to you entirely in the Sacrament of the Altar, which after this life cannot be; and in this union there is more blessedness and delight than in any human love, for that is often vile and transitory; but the sweetness of this union ennobles and dignifies the soul.”

From this, the last segment this Advent featuring St. Gertrude, it almost sounds as if there is a level of union for her in this life that might be envied in the next. Does that not also give us pause, pause and wonder as to the magnitude of the gift also available to us in the Eucharist?

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 526.

St. Gertrude and the Scandalous Friend

December 21, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once, there was a person known to St. Gertrude who refrained from taking Communion because of the talk it would elicit from those who thought she was too great a sinner. As St. Gertrude prayed for this person, she heard the Lord tell her that souls “become more agreeable to Me by their repentance and humility, but there are some who contradict My designs in this, by neglecting the interior beauty which I desire to see after their penance, thinking of the exterior, and of the judgment of men, and this they do, when they deprive themselves of the grace which they might receive in the Sacrament, from fear of scandalizing those who do not think them sufficiently prepared.”

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 169.

St. Gertrude and the Apostles

December 20, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once, before Communion, St. Gertrude felt herself negligent for not having offered thanks for the graces bestowed on St. Paul by the Lord. She prayed to Jesus to make up for her shortcoming and bestow thanks on him for her.

She then went to receive Communion. After doing so, she received a vision of sorts, in which she was seated on a throne, next to Christ. The Apostles came up and knelt before them. It seemed as if they received some increase in their own worth from her Communion.

This surprised Gertrude who thought that they would have received great benefit from receiving Communion as frequently as they did while on earth themselves. She was then told that the Saints take special delight in a soul when it receives the Blessed Sacrament with devotion and piety.

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 206-07.

St. Gertrude and the Crystal

December 19, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once, St. Gertrude was about to receive Communion but was troubled. She was contemplating her own ingratitude and negligence in not having shown proper devotion toward the Mother of God and the Saints. She then was told, by the Lord, that He had provided reparation for this fault Himself, through his communicating Himself to her.

Gertrude was still distraught. She feared that, even though He had provided compensation for her earlier faults, she would commit new ones in the future. Then He told her that He would give Himself to her in the Blessed Sacrament so completely that it would correct not only all her past faults, but her future ones as well. He admonished her, however, that after she received the Eucharist, she had to preserve herself from any stain of sin.

Now a new worry occupied Gertrude. How would she be able to accomplish this? The Lord then told her that, while she may in fact experience some stain of sin, she was not to allow them to “remain long in you, but as soon as you perceive them say, with all the fervor of your heart: ‘Lord, have mercy on me!’ or, ‘Jesus Christ, Who are my only hope, grant that all my sins may be effaced by the merit of Your saving Death!’”

Gertrude then went up to receive the Eucharist. She then saw her own soul as clear as crystal, with the Divinity of Jesus Christ, Whom she had just received, encased inside, shining like gold.

As reported by her colleague, the meaning of this experience was understood to be that every spiritual loss can be repaired by receiving the Body of Christ with a worthy and sincere reverence.

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 206-07.

St. Gertrude and a Question on Routine

December 18, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once. just before St. Gertrude was to receive Communion, she wondered about the difference between people who received the Eucharist more often than others, and thought that priests would receive greater since they took Communion every day.

She then heard the Lord tell her it was true that people who received Him more frequently here on earth would receive benefit from this in the next life, but He also warned against merely receiving the Blessed Sacrament out of routine, saying, “There will be one reward for him who has approached with desire and love, there will be another for him who is very diligent in his preparation. But those who habitually celebrate through custom only, shall have no share in My gifts.”

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 205.

Chastity’s Speech

December 17, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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As a momentary departure from the lofty stories of St. Gertrude, today we offer something more down to earth. Previously on this site we have published a poem of dramatic beauty, written during adoration. Also, we have recounted how St. Eymard relied on Adoration before the Eucharist to help write his sermons. To those involved in these stories, there is real collaboration and aid that can be found before the Eucharist. They understand the Presence is much more than symbolic. To anyone who has difficulty trusting that ideas and writing can be framed better in the His Presence, the following story is offered as a further small corroboration.

Chastity was a student at Powers Catholic High School. Each year, they sent several representatives to Washington, D.C. for a public speaking competition. Chastity entered the competition as a sophomore and presented her speech. She was crestfallen. The judges told her she could try again next year, but she had do desire to do that.

Nonetheless, as the time arose, her mother suggested that she write another speech, this time in Holy Redeemer Chapel. They held perpetual adoration there and her mother told her, “You can write your speech before the Lord.”

Chastity went to the chapel, took over two pews in the rear and spread out her papers. Then, for the next four hours, she proceeded to write.

On their way home, Chastity’s mother told her, “Not to worry, you will be picked.” Chastity was skeptical, but her mother told her that she knew this was true, because Jesus had helped her.

Her mother was right. Chastity was picked this time. The experience helped Chastity, even at a young age, to understand the power of the Eucharist, and His concern for each one of us.

Source: Proctor, Sr. Patricia, OSC, 201 Inspirational Stories of the Eucharist (Spokane, Washington, The Franciscan Monastery of St. Clare, 2004) p. 84.

St. Gertrude and St. James

December 16, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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Once, it was the Feast of St. James the Great, the patron saint of pilgrims. His remains are believed to be buried in Santiago de Compostela, Spain and, for centuries it was, as it still is, a favorite place for pilgrims to visit. On this particular celebration of his feast day, St. Gertrude prayed to obtain remission of her sins through the merits of this Apostle. While she could not make a pilgrimage to his resting place in Spain, she did receive Holy Communion with this intention.

As soon as she received the Eucharist, she received a vision. She was seated at a table with the Lord Jesus, laid out with an array of grand foods. She then offered His Precious Body, which she had just received in Communion, to the Lord Himself, for the greater glory of this Saint. Then, St. James appeared, thanking Him for the favors he had received through the Blessed Sacrament and asking that he grant certain graces to Gertrude, in recompense for the great favor she had bestowed on him by making an offering the Blessed Sacrament in his honor.

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 413.

St. Gertrude and the Fearful Nun

December 15, 2017 by · Leave a Comment
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One time, St. Gertrude saw another nun approaching Communion in extreme fear. Gertrude reacted negatively to this, with feelings of indignation toward a person who would fear that person’s own Savior.

Gertrude then hear the voice of the Lord saying, “Do you not know that I am honored by reverence as well as by love? But as human weakness is not able to combine the two at one moment, and as all are members of one body, those who have less should take from those who have more. For example, let her who is more moved by the sweetness of My love think less of the duty of respect, and be thankful that another supplies for her deficiency.”

Source: St. Gertrude, and a religious of her monastery, The Life and Revelations of St. Gertrude the Great (Charlotte, North Carolina, Tan Books, 2010) p. 167-68.

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