The True Presence of Our Lord

07-09-2023Letter from the PastorFr. Don Kline, V.F.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I want to share with you a powerful reflection on the Real Presence of Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament. It is my hope that this reflection and many others like it will help to strengthen your love for Our Lord and help you to understand His amazing love for you. I understand how difficult it can be to believe that Jesus is truly present in the Host. If you are struggling with your faith and your trust that Our Lord comes to you in the Most Blessed Sacrament, the small and humble host, then prayerfully hear these powerful words from Fr. Kemmy and ask Our Lord to strengthen your love for Him and His Eucharistic Presence in the Most Blessed Sacrament.

“For my flesh is true food, and my blood is true drink. Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me and I have life because of the Father, so also the one who feeds on me will have life because of me. This is the bread that came down from heaven. Unlike your ancestors who ate and still died, whoever eats this bread will live forever.” John 6: 55-58

Fr. Philip Kemmy's Account of the Eucharistic Miracle in Donegal (Part I of IV)

I would like to take you in your mind's eye to August 21, 1879 to Mayo and the village of Knock and to the Parish Church there in that small out of the way place. It's about 7 pm on a rainy Thursday evening and some of the parishioners, 15 of them in total, see a wonderful, wondrous sign at the gable wall of that parish church. They see Our Lady, the Golden Crown upon her head, her hands lifted and her eyes lifted towards heaven. Beside her, they see Saint Joseph bowing in reverence to Our Lady. They also see, on the other side of the Blessed Virgin, the figure of Saint John, the Apostle, the Beloved disciple. Here is Our Lady with these two great men in her life, Joseph her husband and John, the one Jesus gave into her special care when He was dying on Calvary.

But there is an even more special man in Our Lady's life and that is Jesus Himself. Where is He in this heavenly Apparition? He's there too but in a different form. For the whole glorious scene that they see that evening is not centered on Our Lady but on the wonderful vision of an altar upon which there stood a young lamb. Mounted on that altar behind the lamb is a large cross. Around that scene the eyewitnesses also saw angels hovering and adoring the Lamb of God on the altar.

When we go to Knock Shrine today we behold, in The Apparition Chapel, a representation in marble of what those parishioners saw. If you've ever attended Mass there, you cannot but be struck by those very familiar words in the Mass spoken in that place, “Behold the Lamb of God.” It seems that in the Knock apparitions, we are given a glimpse of the Heavenly goings on in every Mass and around every Altar and Tabernacle in all of our churches.

I have often thought that the apparition in Knock is heaven showing us what heaven sees when it looks at the Mass at the altar and at the holy Tabernacle in our churches. The Mass is so familiar to us, and in many ways so ordinary, that we might easily forget the tremendous thing which it is our privilege to participate in. Truly when we attend Mass, we are immersing ourselves in Heavenly things. We are in a sense dipping our toe into eternity.

If the Knock apparition is showing us what our physical eyes cannot see, but what the eyes of our faith-filled hearts are sure is there, then here in this Mass right now around this altar right now, around this Tabernacle always, there is a constant Heavenly activity going on, because here is our God and so here is, in a real sense, a little patch of Heaven. And all the citizens of Heaven, the angels and the Saints are gathered here too, with us to worship the Lamb of God who is with us always.

To be continued…

God Bless,

Fr. Don Kline