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Thursday, April 23, 2020

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St. George
St. Adalbert

Acts 5:27-33
Psalm 34:2, 9, 17-20
John 3:31-36

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the meal of love

"Taste and see how good the Lord is." —Psalm 34:9

At each Mass, Jesus offers us His Body and Blood in the Eucharistic feast. The Church, through the voice of the psalmist, invites us to taste and see how good the Eucharistic Lord is (Ps 34:9). At the first Eucharist, the Last Supper, Jesus told His apostles and each of us: "I have greatly desired to eat this Passover with you" (Lk 22:15). The Mass is a marriage between heaven and earth, and the Eucharist is our wedding banquet (see Rv 19:7).

We approach the altar of the Lord as His spouse. In a very real sense, the Eucharist is a kiss from the Lord's lips to ours. The opening verse of the biblical book of the Song of Songs reads: "Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth" (Sg 1:2). Have you ever approached the Eucharist with that verse on your lips? The Song of Songs is a book about the passionate love shared between the bride and groom. Jesus is the Groom, and we, the members of the Church, are His bride (see Mk 2:19; Eph 5:25; Rv 19:7). Too many times in my own life, my attention has been elsewhere as I receive the Body and Blood of my Spouse, the Lord Jesus, Who loves me with the deepest desire.

Jesus "greatly desires" to give each one of us a Eucharistic kiss. Let us receive Him with devotion and committed love, and return the kiss by our complete devotion, gratitude, trust, and obedience.

Prayer:  Father, may my love for Your Son always exceed the love of any newlywed for their spouse on their wedding day.

Promise:  God "does not ration His gift of the Spirit." —Jn 3:34

Praise:  As bishop of Prague, St. Adalbert instituted clerical reforms. Those who resisted his efforts were successful in exiling him — twice. After his second exile he won a martyr's crown.

Reference:  (This teaching was submitted by a member of our editorial team.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, September 24, 2020

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