Stories

December 8, 2014

Douay, Belgium

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In the church of St. Denis in Douay, Flanders, a certain priest had finished distributing Holy Communion when he noticed a Host lying on the floor. He knelt to pick it up, but it levitated and placed itself on the purifier. He called others to come near the altar and they all saw an image of the Lord in the Host, in the form of a beautiful child.

A man named Thomas Cantipratensis heard of the marvel and went to Douay. He sought out the deacon and declared the purpose of his visit. He was taken to the ciborium that housed the sacred Host, which the deacon then opened. They both beheld the Saviour. Cantipratensis describes the image he saw as: “the head of Jesus Christ, like that of a full grown man. It was crowned with thorns. Two drops of blood trickled down His forehead and fell on His cheek.” Cantipratensis then says that: “with tearful eyes I fell prostrate before Him. When I arose again, I no longer saw either the crown of thorns or the drops of blood, but only the face of a man whose aspect inspired great veneration.”

From: Mueller, Michael, C.S.S.R., The Blessed Eucharist Our Greatest Treasure (Charlotte, N.C., Tan Books, 2011) p.12.

December 7, 2014

St. Colette

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During her long life, Colette was to raise from the dead no less than four people. This gift of the highest form of miracle … placed beyond any doubt, by the fact that these four resurrections were cited during the process of her beatification.

The second person whom she raised from the dead … was named Jehan Boisot, and he was fifteen years old. At the time that Perrine was writing her biography he was still alive. His heartbroken parents could not resign themselves to lose their boy, and the powers attributed to Colette seemed to offer a last chance of holding him from death. At all events, they decided to make the attempt. They carried the bier to the convent chapel, and the father and mother implored Colette to give them back their son. It was early in the morning.

Colette made no reply and went to hear Mass. And then, as if she had made use of the Holy Sacrifice on behalf of this child, she commanded him to arise, and he lifted himself off the bier and walked.

See My Daily Eucharist II by Joan Carter McHugh, and an excerpt contained there from St. Colette and Her Reform by Madame Ste. Marie Perrin.

December 6, 2014

St. Angela of Foligno

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It is reported that St. Angela of Foligno subsisted on the Eucharist as her only food, for twelve years.

That of course does not seem possible. Neither does the fact that her incorrupt body can be viewed in the Church of St. Francis, in Foligno, Italy. She died in 1309.

See My Daily Eucharist II by Joan Carter McHugh, and an excerpt contained there from Witnesses to the Eucharist by Fr. Hugh F. Blunt, LLD; see also http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g227667-d6765469-r211132280-Chiesa_di_San_Francesco-Foligno_Province_of_Perugia_Umbria.html.

December 5, 2014

The Doves

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In 1946, a great procession travelled, on foot, the almost 90-mile distance from Cova da Ira, Portugal to Lisbon. It carried a statue of the Blessed Virgin from the site where she appeared in 1917, more commonly known as Fatima, to the capital of the country. The reason was to commemorate the declaration by King John IV, 300 years earlier, of Mary as the patroness of his country.

As the statue was carried into Lisbon, a priest by the name of Father Oliveira was walking close enough alongside to touch it. A short while later, he wrote of an event that all the newspapers of the time carried with much attention and which was “on the lips of every person in the nation.”

On its way to Lisbon, the statue stopped in a town called Bombarral. While it was there, someone freed four doves into the air. Three of them flew down and perched themselves at the feet of the statue. They then proceeded to stay there, for almost two whole weeks afterwards. The procession with the statue moved from town to town, amid bands playing, fireworks exploding and flowers being thrown right at the statue. Day and night, however, the doves remained.

The culmination of the proceedings was a Solemn Mass with a general communion for the throng of people that had gathered. As the Mass progressed, the doves remained at the feet of the statue as before. When the bell sounded to announce the consecration, two of the doves left the statue. One flew to the Epistle side of the altar and one to the Gospel side. When the bishop raised the consecrated Host, they “alighted and folded their wings, one on each side, as though in adoration.”

As the time for communion arrived, the third dove took to flight as well. It placed itself atop the golden crown on the head of the Madonna. As the celebrant elevated the Host, saying “Ecce Agnus Dei” (“Behold the Lamb of God”), it “spread its white wings and held them open.”

It may of course be that two of the doves independently decided to occupy one side of the altar at the same time as the other, that they both folded their wings when the Presence was raised due to some coincidence, and that the third dove flew to a high point and spread its wings at the time for universal adoration of the Eucharist because it needed room to stretch. It may also be, as so many of the faithful then believed, that He was truly present and a few of his creations could sense it.

Sources: http://eucharisticadoration.com/articles/42/1/Miracle-of-the-Doves/Page1.html; http://www.pilgrimvirginstatue.com/IPVSNEWS4.pdf.

December 4, 2014

Canosio

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In 1630, the Maira River flooded and threatened the small village of Canosio in northwest Italy. The pastor of the town, Father Antonio Reinardi, led a procession to the river with the Blessed Sacrament. He urged the villages to pray and vowed that, if the village was saved, it would hold an annual feast in honor of Corpus Christi. When they arrived at the river and he blessed the raging waters, the rain imediately stopped and the river then returned to its normal level.

To this day, the pledge to honor the Body of Christ every year has been kept.

Source: “The Eucharistic Miracles of the World,” a Vatican international exhibition, as reported by The Real Presence Eucharistic Adoration Association, http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/english_pdf/Canosio.pdf.

December 3, 2014

If There Were Only Someone to Whom I Might Distribute Them

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Blessed Balthasar Alvarez used to visit the Blessed Sacrament often and sometimes would spend whole nights there. Once when kneeling before the altar, he was given a vision of the Lord, who appeared within the Host in the form of a little child. His hands were full of precious stones and He said, “If there were only someone to whom I might distribute them.”

How great His desire must be.

Sources: Mueller, Michael, C.S.S.R., The Blessed Eucharist Our Greatest Treasure (Charlotte, N.C., Tan Books, 2011) p. 55; Liguori, St. Alphonsus M., Visits to the Most Blessed Sacrament, etc. (London, T. Jones, 1849) p. 61.

December 2, 2014

A Wonderful Peace

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On May 9, 2011, on a blog site for Catholics in New Zealand, someone posted the following account:

“I recall an experience many years ago when, and while still a lapsed catholic, I went to mass for some comfort, during a particularly anxious and difficult time of life. I went forward for communion (despite my skepticism with catholicism. I recall very clearly the wonderful peace I experienced after I had taken communion which was very welcome but unexpected, in the midst of my emotional turmoil. I hadn’t even had an experience quite like that during my Catholic youth. “

There is no authentication for this, nor could there be for such a private account. Even if true, it does not seem particularly dramatic. It was dramatic enough for the person writing it, however, for him or her to remember it “many years” later. Lastly, to continue a skeptical approach, one might say that such an episode could always be explained as the working of the person’s own psyche, some outgrowth of inner desires. One indication to the contrary, though, is that the feeling was so “unexpected.”

While many other stories to be found here include miraculous healings or other such extraordinary events, this story seems quite small indeed. Perhaps that makes it all the more special. It may be that we need to understand He can speak to all of us. We do not have to be the recipient of some amazing encounter. Sometimes a whisper can have just as powerful an impact.

Source: http://www.beingfrank.co.nz/reason-to-believe

December 1, 2014

Blessed Anna Maria Taigi

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One day, Blessed Anna Maria Taigi was given Holy Communion, but was intentionally given an unconsecrated host. She instantly realized the absence of the Presence. She also felt something else, a never-ending sadness that she later disclosed to her confessor.

What kind of sadness? Why the need to tell her confessor? Was it a sadness over not feeling an never- ending Love that she had felt before? Was there some level of guilt over not always trusting in Him? How much more is there to feel than we normally do when receiving Communion?

See Manelli, Fr. Stefano M, Jesus Our Eucharistic Love (New Bedford, MA, Immaculate Mediatrix, 2008), p. 70).

November 30, 2014

Marie Savoye

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Marie Savoye was born in 1877. As a young woman of 24, she was very ill, having suffered from rheumatic fever for the previous four years. One of the complications was heart disease, with all the signs of a mitral valve lesion. She suffered from spitting of blood, a complete loss of apetite and such acute weakness that those with her did not even dare to lower her into the baths at Lourdes, France.

While there, however, she was present for the benedition of the Blessed Sacrament. As it was taking place, all her symptoms were suddenly gone. Even a bed sore on her back disappeared.

This miracle took place on September 20, 1901.

Source: http://www.miraclehunter.com/marian_apparitions/approved_apparitions/lourdes/miracles2.html#savoye

April 20, 2014

It was Called the “Secret”

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Until 1964, when Vatican II provided that the second half of the Roman Catholic Mass be called the “Liturgy of the Eucharist,” it was referred to in the officially prescribed regimen for the Mass as the “Secret.” This usage owed its roots to the needs of the faithful at the very inception of the Church, when Roman persecution often meant martyrdom.

Today, the “Secret” need not be so well guarded. On this Easter Sunday, Christ is among us. All praise, honor and glory to Him, forever.

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