What is your disposition as you receive the Holy Eucharist? Do you prepare to receive the Body and Blood of our Lord and only approach to receive when in a state of grace? Do you await Holy Communion with profound reverence and great anticipation?
Fr. Ed Broom finds inspiration from the holy model of Saint Charbel Makhlouf, a Maronite monk from the 19th century. “He would ask for permission to celebrate the Mass at twelve noon so they could spend the whole morning in preparation. And then after he celebrated the Mass at twelve noon … he’d spend the whole afternoon as well as evening in thanksgiving.” While spending the entire day in preparation and thanksgiving for Communion is probably unrealistic for you, St. Charbel’s dedication to preparing to receive our Lord is to be imitated.
With easy access to the sacraments in most areas of the country, we might take for granted our ability to receive the Body and Blood of Christ on any given day. But it’s a glorious event we should never become too accustomed to.
“Wouldn’t that be a good idea if every time you went up to receive the Eucharist you tried to receive it as if it were your first, your last, and your only?” asked Fr. Broom in an interview with Morning Air® on Relevant Radio®.
Fr. Broom shared some ways to better prepare to receive Holy Communion. Find all ten in his recent article at Catholic Exchange.
- Receive in a state of grace. Go to Confession regularly to purify your soul and prepare your heart.
- Arrive on time, or early. Rushing to Mass or arriving late sets the tone for being distracted and stressed rather than calm and attentive during the liturgy. “Arriving a little bit earlier, you’re going to participate much more fully, actively, and consciously,” explained Fr. Broom.
- Never take the Holy Eucharist for granted.
- Understand the gravity of what is taking place. This truly is the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Receive with the reverence and awe of encountering Jesus—because you are.
Fr. Broom asks you to consider the difference between Judas Iscariot and the Blessed Mother receiving the Eucharist. At the Last Supper, Judas receives Holy Communion and then “rushes out right afterwards to betray our Lord.”
The Virgin Mary would have received in a very different manner. “Imagine St. John the Evangelist celebrating the Mass for the Blessed Virgin Mary there in Ephesus and him giving the Blessed Mother the Body of Christ that she received at the Annunciation. Imagine the devotion, the humility, the love, the trust that the Blessed Virgin Mary had,” said Fr. Broom.
Let’s try to imitate the Blessed Mother each time we received the Body and Blood of her son through our fervent prayer and preparation for the Holy Mass. Our very souls, says Fr. Broom, depend on it.
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