The Young Weaver

March 1, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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There was a young weaver by trade who lived in Brussels. His name was John and, in November of 1431, he was praying before the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle when he felt himself suffused by a mysterious light. It caused him both fear and joy. The light was accompanied by a voice which told him that, instead of people coming to give adoration, “they leave Me here in forgetfulness and neglect, far from the eyes and hearts of men. It also told him, “be assured, however, that I will glorify and deliver from all tribulations, all those who call upon Me here.”

John was reluctant to tell others of what he had heard, fearing he would be called a liar, delusional or worse. So, he kept his silence.

The vision was repeated several times more. Still, he kept his silence.

His health began to deteriorate. He could not eat or sleep. He lost a tremendous amount of weight. Finally, he told his confessor, the parish priest of St. Gudula. His health returned at once.

The priest informed the Vicar General of Cambria, John of Liedekirks. Theologians were called in and an investigation was ordered.

It was then that the parish priest, Rev. Koofemans, had an experience of his own. One day, while celebrating Mass, at the moment of Communion, he saw the Host change in appearance. It took the form of a dazzling infant. The child said, “see that you announce to the people all that this youth has told you, because it is the pure truth.”

Source: Etlin, Rev. Lukas, O.S.B., Eucharistic Miracles (Clyde, Missouri, Benedictine Convent of Perpetual Adoration 1947), p. 24-26.

Sister Georgene

February 28, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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One morning in 1994, Sister Georgene attended the 5:30 a.m. Mass. It was one she would remember.

The year before, her father had died. She had to sell the family home. The money was needed to place her mother in an assisted care facility. That was 150 miles away from the school to which she was assigned in Key West, Florida. Now, she was about to be named principal of the school. There were difficulties to be met, daily, in her work, and she felt the strain of not being able to visit her mother. She was an only child and her mother was, in some sense, alone.

Sister Georgene was becoming depressed and was finding it harder and harder to cope. She had thought of going to the priest who had charge over the center to which she belonged, but decided against it. As she had done in the past, she steeled herself to doing it all on her own.

As she went to Communion, the tears and distress were at a height. She pleaded to Him for help, for some sign as to where she should turn.

It was then that she heard a voice that shocked her. It said, “go to him.” She turned around, startled, looking for someone who might have said this. Everyone was engrossed in their own silent prayer, however.

Heeding the direction given by the voice, she went to see the priest. That began her counseling and healing. She looks back on that day and on the answer to a prayer she was given.

The chapel in which that morning Mass was said soon changed. It was turned into a perpetual adoration chapel devoted to Divine Mercy. Above the tabernacle is a large image of Christ, in the Divine Mercy style seen by Saint Faustina.

At that one morning Mass there that Sister Georgene remembers, she was given to understand two things she already knew. The Real Presence is there for us in the Sacred Eucharist, and whatever may be our particular needs, He has mercy in His Heart for us.

Source: Proctor, Sr. Patricia, OSC, 201 Inspirational Stories of the Eucharist (Spokane, Washington, The Franciscan Monastery of St. Clare, 2004) p. 201-02.

The Young Man of 26

February 27, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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It is said that time spent in the presence of the Eucharist can change a person. Well, one cannot expect that to happen immediately. It usually takes time. As to the story below, there is more to it than the short portion provided here. The real story may be more about what happened afterwards. Still, this was the starting point.

A young man came to see the Cure D’ Ars for confession one day. He lived in a town of about 25,000 people. He was known by most everyone there and held in high regard. This was quite important to him.

Also, it seems that for young people like himself, and for others whose opinion mattered to him, belief in the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist was looked on skeptically and perhaps even derision. To be popular, one would not openly demonstrate support for such a belief.

And so it must have been quite surprising, and disquieting, for the young man when Fr. Vianney told him that, for his penance, on one of the two Sundays in his town for the procession celebrating the feast of Corpus Christi, he would have to walk in that procession. Further, he would have to walk in a spot directly behind the canopy over the Eucharist.

He avoided doing it the first Sunday. On the second, he knew he had to. And so he did. He later said, for two hours, “cold perspiration bathed my forehead; my knees shook under me.” He also said that were he to “live a hundred years,” he would never forget “those two hours.”

It did change him. He said that, because of it, he “roused” his faith and “endeavored to pray.” Two years later, he led a conference of St. Vincent de Paul, in front of thirty young men who had been inspired by his example.

Source: Trochu, Abbe Francois, The Cure D’Ars (Charlotte, N.C., Tan Books 2007) p. 318.

Inexplicably, He Knew

February 26, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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Wayne Weible was not Catholic. He was Lutheran, and formerly had been a Baptist. Taking communion had been “symbolic” for him. Then, on a pilgrimage, he found himself inside a Catholic church during Mass. In this particular church, because it was so packed, some of the priests came to the rear of the church to distribute the Eucharist. He says that he suddenly found a priest standing in front of him and giving him a Host before he really understood what was taking place. Weible did not then know that non-Catholics were not supposed to receive Communion at Mass.

As he consumed the Host, he said that it seemed like an “explosion” was taking place inside of him and that, “inexplicably, I knew Jesus was in it.”

A few moments later, while kneeling in prayer with his eyes closed, he then says that he had a vision of Jesus, standing in front of him. He was surrounded by a brilliant light. He then asked Weible if he wanted to undertake a mission. It was confirmation of an experience he had eight months before.

Source: Weible, Wayne, Medjugorje and the Eucharist (Hiawassee, Georgia, New Hope Press 2014) p. 18-19).

Hartmannswiller

February 25, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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Hartmannswiller is a town in the Alsace region of northeastern France. On June 12, 1828, during an 8-day celebration of the Real Presence in the Eucharist, the Corpus Christi octave, Fr. Willig, the pastor, exposed the Blessed Sacrament in the monstrance. Children who knelt near the altar, as well as certain other children saw the face of the Child Jesus in the Eucharist. It was the face of a live child, as the eyes moved and looked at the spectators. A light was also seen emanating from the image.

On June 13, 1828, Fr. Willig again exposed the Host. This time he too saw the extraordinary image. He permitted a number of men to ascend the altar steps and they too saw as the others did.

On June 14, 1828, still within the Corpus Christi octace, the Host was exposed once more. This time, the final night of this extraordinary event, all in the church were able to see the Child, and it was reported that the light coming from the Host was the brightest yet.

Source: Etlin, Rev. Lukas, O.S.B., Eucharistic Miracles (Clyde, Missouri, Benedictine Convent of Perpetual Adoratio 1947), p. 8-10. See also “Letter of Father Badin,” The St. Louis Catholic Historical Review, pub. by Catholic Historical Society of St. Louis, Jan. 1923, p. 175, in which Fr. Badin quotes a letter received by a fellow priest reporting on this same event, which had “made a great stir in Paris.”

Turenne

February 24, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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King Louis XIV was disappointed. He had hoped that a man he respected and loved would return to the Catholic faith. That man was a general named Turenne. He was a steadfast Calvinist, however.

Jacques-Benigne Bousset, perhaps the most renowned orator from the pulpit of his day, took to engage Turenne in private conversations, seeking to convert the man. The one stumbling block which he could not overcome was the doctrine of the Real Presence. Turenne simply could not bring himself to believe in it.

It was during one of these private sessions, in 1667, that a fire broke out in one of the galleries that connected the Louvre with the Palace of the Tuileries. A fierce wind fanned the flames and all efforts to save the multitude of precious artworks collected there seemed to have no hope of success.

It was then that Bousset ran to the palace chapel. Taking a ciborium holding God Made Man, he appeared at one end of burning gallery. As the sound of the bell that announced the coming of the King of Kings, all present fell to sides, making a path in the middle of the gallery through which Bousset was allowed to walk. Pronouncing a benediction, Bousset made his way through the men and the smoke. As he did so, the wind ceased and the fire subsided.

Turenne joined in the procession that carried the Sacred Host back to the tabernacle in the chapel, singing along with the others there, the Te Deum, the ancient hymn dating back to the 4th century that begins, “Thee, O God, we praise.”

From that day, Turenne was a believer.

Shapcote, Emily Mary, Legends of the Blessed Sacrament (London, Burns & Oates) p. 115-116.

St. Tarcissus

February 23, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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In 258 A.D., Pope Sixtus II was martyred in the Catacombs below Rome. He had violated an edict of the Emperor Valerian by visiting the “cemeteries.” The Catacombs had been the one place that Christians could take refuge and say Mass with some sense of security. Now, that was even forbidden.

The day after the execution of the Pope, it was determined that the Holy Eucharist should be sent to the faithful who remained in the city, in order to strengthen them for the death that awaited them as well. A boy named Tarcissus was given the task of taking the Blessed Sacrament to them. He wrapped it in linen and concealed it about his person.

As he approached the walls of the city, he was met by a party of soldiers. They demanded to see what he was carrying. He would not obey. They struck him repeatedly and killed him. Then they searched him but could find nothing. The Host had disappeared.

Shapcote, Emily Mary, Legends of the Blessed Sacrament (London, Burns & Oates) p. 11.

All Over The World

February 22, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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“Once, the image was being exhibited over the altar during the Corpus Christi procession [June 20, 1935]. When the priest exposed the Blessed Sacrament, and the choir began to sing, the rays from the image pierced the Sacred Host and spread out all over the world. Then I heard these words: These rays of mercy will pass through you, just as they have passed through this Host, and they will go out through all the world. At these words, profound joy invaded my soul.”

From the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, par. 441.

Spreading Throughout the Church

February 21, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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That same day, when I was in church waiting for confession, I saw the same rays issuing from the monstrance and spreading throughout the church. This lasted all through the service. After the Benediction, [the rays shone out] to both sides and returned again to the monstrance. Their appearance was bright and transparent like crystal.

From the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, par. 370.

Two Rays Coming Out

February 21, 2018 by · Leave a Comment
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“During Holy Mass, when the Lord Jesus was exposed in the Blessed Sacrament, before Holy Communion I saw two rays coming out from the Blessed Host, just as they are painted in the image, one of them red and the other pale. And they were reflected on each of the sisters and wards, but not on all in the same way. On some of them the rays were barely visible. It was the last day of the children’s retreat.”

From the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, par. 336.

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