April Devotion – The Blessed Sacrament
Other Christians, most notably the Eastern Orthodox, some Anglicans and some Lutherans, believe in the Real Presence, that is, they believe, as we Catholics do, that the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ in the sacrament of the altar (though only Catholics define this change as transubstantiation).
However, only the Catholic Church has developed the practice of Eucharistic adoration. Every Catholic Church contains a Tabernacle in which the Body of Christ is reserved between Masses and the faithful are encouraged to come and pray before the Blessed Sacrament. Frequent prayer before the Blessed Sacrament is a path to spiritual growth.
The practice of Eucharistic adoration on earth not only brings us grace but prepares us for our life in Heaven. As Ven Pope Pius XII wrote in Mediator Dei (1947):
“These exercises of piety have brought a wonderful increase in faith and supernatural life to the Church militant upon earth and they are reechoed to a certain extent by the Church triumphant in heaven which sings continually a hymn of praise to God and to the Lamb “who was slain.”
This month, why not make a special effort to spend some time in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament? It doesn’t need to be long or elaborate – You can start simply by making the Sign of the Cross and uttering a short profession of faith, such as “My Lord and my God!” as you pass a Catholic church. If you have the time to stop for five minutes, all the better.
“A thousand years of enjoying human glory is not worth even an hour spent
in sweetly communing with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.”
“When you want to find me, come near the tabernacle.”