Saturday, 26 November 2016



In the first place, O Christian soul, consider how Jesus Christ united the Eucharist and suffering.

The priest, at the holy altar, repeats every morning these words :—

"The day before He suffered, Jesus took bread." (Canon of the Mass.) And in fact Jesus only leaves the chamber of the Last Supper but to go to the garden of Olives, where He will be betrayed and given up to His executioners. The date of the Eucharist and that of the Passion are the same. But what end does Jesus propose to Himself when giving to His disciples His Body to eat and His Blood to drink ? Above all He would leave them a living memorial of His sufferings. " This Body," he says, " is That which will be given for you. This Blood will be shed for the remission of your sins."

The Passion and the Eucharist, which have the same date and the same end, are not separated in the future.

No doubt the glorious Body of Jesus Christ suffers no more, but His Passion remains so inherent in the Eucharist, that the latter is only a sacrament but inasmuch as It is a sacrifice. The Host, before being presented to us as the food of our soul, has been offered as Victim on the altar of immolation. The priest never pronounces the words which consecrate without reminding that these words were said by the Saviour" Himself on the eve of His Passion. The altar is at the same time the Upper Chamber and Calvary: the Upper Chamber of the Eucharist and the Passion are only one memory for us.

Well, then, now I return to you, O Christian soul! God has imposed suffering upon you; a cruel sickness wears your limbs; your bed of suffering is a Calvary* Oh! profit by these precious moments, unite your own passion with the Divine Eucharist.

Hitherto, perhaps, and as long as Providence preserved your health, you loved to come often and kneel at the foot of the holy table. Now you can no longer do it—and yet, allow me to say it to you, it is now that God has placed you in the best condition to unite you to the Eucharist.

You suffer ! Ah ! remember the holy words which I have quoted to you. " Before He suffered, Jesus took bread." He only took it in order to bless it, and to distribute it to you. Receive the Bread, all you who suffer.

The God of the Eucharist so loves your sufferings that to go towards them He leaves His tabernacle, He traverses streets and public places, He walks through the country, He climbs the summit of the mountains, or He descends into the valley. There where lives he who suffers, the Eucharist finds itself as it were in Its native country. Your bed of pain is a Calvary, you say: it is for this reason that it will the better be an Upper Chamber—the Eucharist is born of suffering. It belongs firstly to those who suffer.