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Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Venerable Fulton J. Sheen on Love and Joy in Receiving Holy Communion


The basis of this plea for communion is Love, for Love by its very nature tends to unity. Love of citizens one for another begets the unity of the state. Love of man and woman begets the unity of two in one flesh. The love of God for man therefore calls for a unity based upon the Incarnation, namely, the unity of all men in the Body and Blood of Christ. In order, therefore, that God might seal His love for us, He gave us to Himself in Holy Communion, so that as He and His human nature taken from the womb of the Blessed Mother were one in the unity of His Person, so He and we taken from the womb of humanity might be one in the unity of the Mystical Body of Christ. Hence, we use the word "receive" when speaking of communion with our Lord in the Eucharist, for literally we do "receive" Divine Life, just as really and truly as a babe receives the life of its mother. All life is sustained by communion with a higher life. If the plants could speak they would say to the moisture and sunlight, "Unless you enter into communion with me, become possessed of my higher laws and powers, you shall not have life in you."
If the animals could speak, they would say to the plants: "Unless you enter into communion with me, you shall not have my higher life in you." We say to all lower creation: "Unless you enter into communion with me, you shall not share in my human life."
Why then should not our Lord say to us: "Unless you enter into communion with Me, you shall not have life in you"? The lower is transformed into the higher, plants into animals, animals into man, and man, in a more exalted way, becomes "divinized," if I may use that expression, through and through by the life of Christ. Communion then is first of all the receiving of Divine Life, a life to which we are no more entitled than marble is entitled to blooming. It is a pure gift of an all-merciful God who so loved us that He willed to be united with us, not in the bonds of flesh, but in the ineffable bonds of the Spirit where love knows no satiety, but only rapture and joy.

3 comments:

newguy40 said...

Certainly an interesting and thought provoking meditations from Blessed Sheen. I must say I never would have linked together the ideas as he has when it comes to communion and life forces.

But,really, he is so correct. Communion is life giving and life sustaining. Speaking for myself, without the holy eucharist I would be dead one way or another --- if not physically then everything else. I have such love and regard for our Eucharistic Lord. My '62 Missal has many wonderful meditaions and prayers about Communion. One I utilize to great effect has been to frequently remind myself after holy communion how God came down from heaven and condescended to give Himself to me in the eucharist. And, that I must make frequent acts of Faith and Love as I recall the Grace of communion. Truly, there is no God like our God who gave all of Himself to us and remains with us right down the street in and in the Tabernacle of our local Church.

Supertradmum said...

newguy40, your comment is very moving as well. If you have time, look at the entire book online at the link.
http://www.sanctamissa.org/en/resources/books/calvary/

newguy40 said...

Thanks for the link. I'll add this one to my ever growing queue...

The only other book I have read by Blessed Sheen was "This is the Mass". I obtained an old and beat up copy after I began attending the Latin Mass. Wow. What an eye opener. I really had no idea up 'til then....