Skip to main content

“Open the eyes of your heart, and let yourself be pierced by this mystery…”

As the National Eucharistic Congress takes place in Indiana, USA in July and the International Eucharistic Congress in Ecuador in September, here are some thoughts by Catherine about the Eucharist:

Have you ever thought about the immense gift God has given to us in the Holy Eucharist? Everything you can say about Christianity is related to the Eucharist in one way or another.

Open the eyes of your heart and let yourself be pierced by this mystery: God, the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, gives himself to us in the humblest possible way, as bread and wine.

The multiplication of the loaves and fishes was a beautiful miracle. But our Lord did not come just to feed four thousand people on a particular day. He came to give himself as bread every day until the end of time.

The multiplication of the loaves and fishes is dwarfed by this daily multiplication of himself at the Eucharistic banquet.

Everything can be borne between two Masses. If every morning we eat the Bread of saints, we will be able to face any kind of day. We will plunge into the sea of fire and come out burning, ready to go forth and light fires of love.

You are an empty chalice. Every morning you have to be filled. Every morning you offer yourself, your day, your being, and consecrate yourself as a sacrifice to make up what is wanting in the passion of Christ. I eat Christ in the morning, and I am eaten up myself through the day.


A Nuptial Mystery

Communion is the union of man’s soul with God. The source of all strength, our communions could change the world if the fire of the Holy Spirit were really allowed to fall on the earth, and to renew it through you and me.

Our faith centers around the truth that God loved us first, and all we have to do to be fiery apostolic Catholics is to love him back. If we meditate deeply on the Eucharist, we will distinctly hear the loving, powerful, immense heartbeats of God. We would hear more — we would hear that heart speaking to us. We would hear our hearts beating in unison with his; we would be united with our Lord and our God.

We take communion, and we communicate with God. … No words can describe the oneness of a soul with God in the sacrament of the Eucharist.

The great miracle at the marriage feast at Cana, the changing of water into wine, was a prefiguration of the Eucharist. At each Communion, the Lord invites us to his wedding feast. If only we understood and lived by his love, every day would be a honeymoon with God!

When I receive our Lord, I experience the nuptial mystery of man and God. God the Father makes love to his chosen people. Because we are human and simple and ordinary, he chose the image of marriage. “I am the Bridegroom,” says God. I am his, and he is mine. Here begins the kingdom of God.

Through the Holy Eucharist, you will fall in love with God. The more you love God, the more you receive God. The deeper your love becomes, the more your heart opens. You and the Trinity are one.


Love Demands Love

But we cannot just sit there and say, “Well, yes, all this is beautiful,” and “Aren’t we lucky,” and “I do want to be loved by God.” He who instituted the Most Holy Eucharist said, “I have come to serve.” Love demands love in return, and love begets love.

We ask, what must we do? I prefer to say, what must we be? We must be lovers who love God back. We cannot help it, for You draw me with the scent of your ointments (Sg 1:3). When you love, you want to serve.

Down through the centuries comes his voice: “You must love the Lord your God with your whole soul, your whole mind, and your whole heart.” And then, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

My soul becomes like that of the woman in the Song of Songs: my beloved is not here, so I arise and seek him. I go to the watchman of the night and say, “Have you seen my beloved?”

And the watchman will answer, “I am your beloved, because whatsoever you do to the least of my brethren, you do to me.” To find Christ we have only to turn to each other.

Communion spurs you on. It is like a flame bursting within your soul. Off you go to love passionately, recklessly, imprudently, unto folly, without counting the cost to yourself.

In the Eucharist we receive the strength to preach the Gospel with our life in everyday activities, not looking for false glamor or status. From the Eucharist we draw the courage to go and fight. Wherever we find ourselves, these are the front lines.

We have only one weapon: a love that asks for nothing and gives everything, a love that throws itself at the feet of God and says, “I sing and sing that I bring you such a small thing — my life, Beloved.”

Do we realize how much he loves us? On this question hinges the answer to all the tensions with which our world is faced.

He who touches God, and is in love with God, touches and loves humanity — not humanity as a whole, but each individual. To love humanity like this is to serve people in every dimension of human existence. It is to embrace all of life — politics, economics, technology, science, sports — every activity of man.

If my right hand touches God and my left hand touches man, then I am cruciform. And when I am cruciform, I am united to Christ. This is the reason I was baptized. This is the reason I receive Communion as often as possible.


Everything Is His

Your suffering, my suffering, is lifted like a chalice by Our Lady and laid at the feet of the Father. All our pain, our aches, our emotional problems are contained in that chalice and fall like a benediction across the whole world. We offer this to God for our brothers and sisters in atonement for a world gone crazy, and for those who do not believe that Jesus Christ is God.

Offer your whole life to the Lord during Mass every day. Put yourself on the paten with the bread that will become the Body of the Lord. Be the water that is mingled with the wine that will become his precious Blood.

Strong in his strength and grace, let us give God our whole day, the time between two Masses, so that we may become saints, which simply means lovers of God, and which is the only end truly worth striving for.

If we learn to love well, his kingdom will be ours — even in this world — with its joyous peace and its perfect happiness.

Adapted from People of the Towel and Water, pp.23-29.

 Restoration July/August 2024