It’s Holy Thursday, the day on which Christ first said the words, “This is my body, which will be given for you; do this in memory of me,” and instituted the Holy Eucharist. Some 2,000 years later, the Real Presence of Christ’s Body and Blood in the Blessed Sacrament is the source and summit of the Catholic faith (CC 1324).
This week, Fr. Ben Cameron, priest of the Fathers of Mercy, joined The Inner Life® to discuss what Eucharistic Devotion looks like in the lives of Catholics today.
Devotion is a loyalty or dedication to something. But for Catholics, devotion isn’t just a love of golf or recycling. Fr. Cameron says, “Ultimately, for Catholics or Christians, devotion has to do with the love and loyalty to Christ and his face. And it’s not just we go to Mass, but we really love and want to be there. We are really very intentional about how we go about our faith.”
So what does a devotion to the Holy Eucharist look like? Fr. Ben Cameron says it can manifest itself in being more attentive at Mass and a desire to be with Christ and receive the Body and Blood of our Lord. When we truly understand and love the True Presence of Christ, we want to be near him—in the Holy Mass, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, or simply praying near the tabernacle.
“We try to be much more attentive and to be joining our heart and soul with Christ’s sacrifice, with everything that is happening in the sacred liturgy. It would involve a desire to be able to receive him—to really want him to come into our hearts and souls, our bodies—In the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity—that he would come into us and take up his abode within us,” explained Fr. Cameron.
To have a devotion to the Holy Eucharist doesn’t necessarily mean you must be a daily communicant or sit in Adoration for hours each week. “Is the Eucharist at the center of our lives? Is that something that is the most precious thing to us—our Lord’s Real Presence? Because sometimes, with our schedule, with our work, with our family, we may not be able to be there every day … but is that love for the Eucharist a central feature in our lives that keeps us … falling more in love with Christ?”
This is a unique Holy Thursday, as we’re physically distant from the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. But that doesn’t mean our connection to the Eucharist is lost.
“Any Mass anywhere in the world we can always join spiritually. Kind of like St. Pio used to say, send your guardian angel. We can join ourselves spiritually to the sacrifice because, ultimately, every Mass is Christ’s sacrifice that is eternally present to the Father,” said Fr. Cameron. Find a video stream of the Mass—Relevant Radio® offers one every day at noon CT—and you can even find live streams from Perpetual Adoration chapels. And don’t just sit idly and watch Mass, but participate!
Any time you can’t receive the Body and Blood sacramentally, make a spiritual communion. St. Francis de Sales resolved to make a spiritual communion every 15 minutes, to unite his heart with Christ at every moment and make room for the Lord to dwell in his soul.
Celebrate Holy Thursday with Relevant Radio! Fr. Rocky will celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at 5pm CT on March 9. View the full Holy Week/Easter programming schedule at relevantradio.com/holy-week.
Tune in to The Inner Life® weekdays at 11am-noon CT only on Relevant Radio®.