Thursday, 12 January 2017

The Devotion to the Sacred Heart Of Jesus. 11.




Goya's St. Francis Borgia

6. They are assiduous in paying frequent visits to the Blessed Sacrament, and often approach the holy table. There indeed they find the Heart which they love and adore not merely under a symbol, but really, truly, and actually present. There Our Lord and Redeemer is, as it were, upon His throne of grace, ready to bestow on all who draw near to Him, who receive Him, "grace for grace." Accordingly they come and offer petitions for them selves and for the Church and all the faithful in Christ, particularly for those who are or who will be committed to their care.

There He abides among us as our Father, our Friend, our Comforter, as our Light and our Strength; He waits for us and admits us to intercourse with Himself. Never do we seek His presence without being enlightened, fortified, and invigorated; never does He let us depart without His grace and His benediction.

How often does He dwell in the tabernacle as a hermit in a strange land, nay, even as a prisoner amidst His enemies. In the Sacrament of the Altar He has willed to place Him self entirely in the hands of His priests; it is for them to watch over and safeguard Him, to carry Him about and elevate Him in benediction to administer Him to the faithful as their spiritual sustenance and to offer Him up as a sacrifice to the Most High; He surrenders Himself entirely to them. Every Christian who loves Our Lord is bound to visit Him as often as possible in His loneliness in the tabernacle. The duties of our calling do not permit of pro longed orisons; but a short visit to the Blessed Sacrament will not interfere with our daily avocations, especially if we live under the same roof with Him; on the contrary, it will be useful and profitable to us. St. Francis Borgia was in the habit of visiting the Blessed Sacrament seven times a day, in honour of the seven times when the precious blood was shed: at the circumcision, in the Garden of Olives, at the scourging, the crowning with thorns, the nailing of the hands, the nailing of the feet to the cross, and the piercing of His sacred side. At each visit he besought for himself one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit.