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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

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St. Hilary

Hebrews 2:5-12
Psalm 8
Mark 1:21-28

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spotlight on the eucharist

"At present we do not see all things thus subject, but we do see Jesus." —Hebrews 2:8-9

I walked to Mass today amid dark clouds and a blustery wind. Because of the cloud cover, the Church was relatively dark for a noon Mass. As the priest lifted the Holy Eucharist at the moment of consecration, a shaft of bright sunlight shone through the stained glass directly onto the altar, flooding the Eucharist in brilliant light. The beam of light continued during the elevation of the Precious Blood. Following the consecration, the clouds again covered the sky. The sun broke through once more, at the instant the host and cup were lifted at the doxology to close the Eucharistic prayer. After the priest lowered the host and cup, the clouds covered the sun the rest of the day.

We often "walk in the dark valley" (Ps 23:4). We know "all things" are subject to King Jesus, but often we can't see this (Heb 2:8). Instead, what we see is that at least half of the registered Catholics are so uninspired by His eucharistic presence that they can't manage to spend an hour with Him at Sunday Mass (cf Mt 26:40). If we aren't diligent, we might soon join this "other half."

The Eucharist is a "mystery of light" (Ecclesia de Eucharistia, Pope John Paul II, 6). "We do see Jesus" in the Eucharist (Heb 2:9), yet we must fix our eyes ever more earnestly on Him (Heb 3:1). The more we look at Jesus present in the Eucharist, the more we are able to see His brightness (Jn 8:12). The less attention we pay to Jesus in the Eucharist, the more we focus on the darkness and forget Him (see Jn 3:19-20). Go to Mass frequently, daily if possible. Devote your life to Jesus in the Eucharist.

Prayer:  Jesus, Bread of Life (Jn 6:35), fill me with "eucharistic amazement" (Ecclesia de Eucharistia, Pope John Paul II, 6).

Promise:  "He gives orders to unclean spirits and they obey!" —Mk 1:27

Praise:  St. Hilary fought against the Arian heresy and for belief in Jesus' divinity.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, June 17, 2008

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