Saturday, October 15, 2011

Always be found...

 "To converse with You, O King of glory,
no third person is needed,
You are always ready
in the Sacrament of the Altar
to give audience to all.
All who desire You always find You there,
and converse with You face to face."
 St Teresa of Avila
 Spain ~ 1515-1582
Carmelite Contemplative, Reformer, Author
FEAST DAY - October 15
   St. Teresa’s most popularly known writing is a brief poem known as her “Bookmark”,
because it was found in her prayer book after her death in 1582.
Original Spanish:

Nada te turbe,
nada te espante;
todo se pasa,
Dios no se muda.
La pacientia todo lo alcanza.
Quien a Dios tiene nada la falta:
solo Dios basta.

Let nothing disturb you,
Let nothing frighten you,
All things are passing away:
God never changes.
Patience obtains all things.
Whoever has God lacks nothing;
God alone suffices.

St Teresa of Avila, ora pro nobis!

More about ... St. Teresa of Avila and the Eucharist

By Fr John A. Hardon, SJ
The Church in the sixteenth century was in desperate need of reform. So true is this that we may correctly speak of the Catholic Reformation which took place after the Protestant revolution. Among the Catholic reformers was a contemplative nun who has since been declared a Doctor of the Church, St. Teresa of Avila (1515 - 1582)
As might be expected, Teresa of Avila was one of the staunch defenders of the Catholic faith in her day. Unlike her contemporary, St. Ignatius Loyola, she did not organize an academic crusade to defend the teachings of the one, true Church. She was a contemplative who spent the latter half of her life restoring Carmelite spirituality to its historic authenticity. However, under obedience of her spiritual directors she published some of the deepest and clearest expositions of Catholic Christianity. Her published writings span the whole gamut of the Church’s teaching.
Among the doctrines undermined by the followers of Luther and Calvin was the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist. The key factor was their denial that the Eucharist is literally the Incarnate Son of God. The crucial issue was the humanity of Christ. There was no problem admitting that the Eucharist somehow signifies or symbolizes the presence of God. What the “Reformers” would not admit is that the Holy Eucharist is the whole Christ with the fullness of His humanity united with His divinity. The following passage from St. Teresa was written in 1575. She describes the deep secrets that God revealed to her after she had received Holy Communion.
Once after receiving Communion, I was given understanding of how the Father receives within our soul the most holy Body of Christ, and of how I know and have seen that these Divine Persons are present, and how pleasing to the Father this offering of His Son is, because He delights and rejoices with Him here - let us say - on earth. For His humanity is not present with us in the soul, but His divinity is. Thus the humanity is so welcome and pleasing to the Father and bestows on us so many favors.
What is St. Teresa saying? She is saying that God the Father bestows on us indescribable blessings through the humanity of His Only Son. It is impossible to overestimate the importance of this truth. Certainly the graces we receive come to us from God. But they come to us through the humanity which the Second Person of the Holy Trinity assumed when He became man.
That is why the Holy Eucharist is called The Mystery of Faith. The Eucharist is nothing less than Jesus Christ. It is not only that God became man to redeem the world by His death on Calvary. God is constantly redeeming the world by communicating through the humanity of Jesus the graces that He won for us on Good Friday. At the heart of our faith is the belief that God assumed our human nature in order to serve as the channel of the graces that we need to reach our heavenly destiny. The Holy Eucharist, therefore, is the principal channel of the light and strength we need to embrace the cross in this valley of tears in order to join the Savior in His eternal glory.

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