We meet Christ in the Holy Eucharist

Lord, hear my prayer, let my cry reach thee; hide not thy face from me in the day of trouble. Incline your ear to me; when I call upon you, hear me at once1.

The Gospel of the Mass recounts the miracles that Jesus performed on that occasion, when he returned again to the other side of the lake, probably to Capernaum. St. Luke tells us that everyone was waiting for him3. They are happy to have Jesus with them again; and immediately he took the road to the city, followed by his disciples and the crowd surrounding him on all sides.

Among the many who crowd around Christ, a hesitant woman sometimes approaches him, sometimes lags behind, while she keeps repeating to herself: "If I can touch his garment, I shall be healed. She had been ill for twelve years, and she had used all the human remedies available to her: many doctors had given her all kinds of treatments and she had spent all her fortune on them. But that day she understood that Jesus was her only remedy: not only for an illness that made her impure before the law, but the remedy for her whole life. She reached out her hand and managed to touch the hem of the Lord's garment. At that moment Jesus stopped, and she was healed.

Who touched my garment," Jesus asked, turning to those around him. I know that a power has gone out of me.4 And at the same instant, the woman saw those eyes falling on her that reached to the depths of her heart, and she was frightened and trembling and full of joy, all at once, she threw herself at his feet.

We too need daily contact with Christ, for our weaknesses are many and our infirmities are many. And when we receive Him in sacramental Communion, this encounter with Him, hidden in the sacramental species, is realized. And there are so many good things that we receive in each Communion that the Lord looks at us and can say to us: I know that a power has gone out of me: a torrent of graces that floods us with joy, gives us the necessary firmness to go forward, and causes the astonishment of the angels.

When we approach Christ, we know well that we are before an ineffable mystery, and that not even in our most fervent Communions are we worthy to receive him as he deserves. The Holy Eucharist is the hidden source from which untold good things come to the soul that extend beyond our existence here on earth...: Jesus comes to remedy our need; he promptly responds to our supplication.

Our growing friendship with Christ impels us to long for the moment of Communion, to unite ourselves intimately with Him. We seek Him with the diligence of this sick woman, with all the means at our disposal (human and supernatural, such as turning to our Guardian Angel).

If at any time, because of travel, exams, work, etc., it becomes more difficult for us to go to receive Him, we will put more effort, more ingenuity, more love; we will then seek Him with the same determination with which Mary Magdalene went to the tomb, at dawn on the third day, without caring about the soldiers guarding it, nor the stone that prevents her from passing....

St. Catherine of Siena explains with an example the importance of lively desiring Communion. Suppose," she says, "that several people have a candle of different weights and sizes. The first carries a candle of one ounce; the second, two ounces; the third, three ounces; the third, one pound (16 ounces). Each one lights its candle. And it happens that the one with the one ounce candle has less light than the one with the one ounce candle. So it is with those who come to Communion. Each one carries a candle, that is, the holy desires with which he receives this sacrament5. These holy desires, the condition of fervent Communion, are manifested in the first place in the effort to put away every deliberate venial sin and every conscious lack of love for God.

Hablar con Dios