Friday, 15 May 2009

The Real Presence...

This evening our parish was visited by Raymond de Souza, EWTN host and lay apologist, on his UK tour.

The topic he spoke on was one which is dear to my heart: whether Jesus' presence in the Eucharist is real or just "symbolic". For any Catholic it's a no-brainer, but I was keen to hear what arguments Raymond would put forward.

I was a little unsure how the talk would go: I half expected a "typical" evangelistic type, rather like Scott Hahn... don't get me wrong, I enjoy reading Scott Hahn's work (in small doses) and admire his zeal, but it's all a bit exhausting, and doesn't translate well in the UK. There is a basic lack of understanding as to how far the de-Christianisation of Europe has progressed: America, for all its "separation of Church and State" is far more steeped in religion than the UK.

In fact, Raymond de Souza proved to be an inspirational and fascinating speaker. He spoke without any notes, but he never seemed to stray far from his central message: that Christ had not been speaking figuratively when he said that a person must eat his flesh and drink his blood in order to inherit eternal life. I had already heard the arguments Raymond used, but his delivery was fresh and engaging, and he gave the topic an intensity I hadn't experienced before.

After a brief service of Benediction, there was an opportunity to buy some CDs and books - I managed to get a copy of Henry VIII's Defence of the Seven Sacraments, which Raymond de Souza had edited and supplemented - it comes with 2 CDs inside the cover. I knew that Henry VIII's treatise had defended the existence of the seven Sacraments (Luther maintained that there were only two, Baptism and the Eucharist) but I hadn't realised that Henry had also written arguments defending the primacy of the Pope. I look forward to reading the book.

The full itinerary of Raymond de Souza's tour can be found HERE, and if you are in the vicinity, I would really recommend making the effort to hear him in person. If you can't make any of the events mentioned, you can buy CD recordings of many of his talks.

Finally, I was delighted to make the acquaintance of Bernadette Bevans (of BevansInc.), who is responsible for co-ordinating Raymond's UK tour, and Gary Bevans, who painted the reproduction of the Sistine Chapel ceiling in the church of Goring-by-Sea, West Sussex. The Bevans are also responsible for producing DVDs on various topics, such as the life of St. Edmund Campion and St. Philip Howard, through their company, Mary's Dowry Productions. Pop over and check them out!

10 comments:

George said...

Hi Mac,

I agree with your sentiments entirely. Raymond gave a truely inspirational talk and no-one could have left the evening without the reaffirmation or with any doubt that Jesus is TRUELY not figuratively present body, blood, soul and divinity in the Blessed Eucharist!

After all as Raymond said, why do the Satanists value the Sacred Host so highly and pay such premiums to people who they manipulate to steal consecrated Hosts for their black masses? (Communion in the hand problems again!) If the host was merely a 'piece of bread' they could go to Tesco's and buy a pack of pitta breads!!!

God bless Raymond and his work.

berenike said...

St Thomas More says that it was the king who convinced him of the papal primacy.

gemoftheocean said...

George, yo0u can DREAM it's a "communion in the hand problem" but the sad fact of the matter is, real Satanic types would probably be even MORE likely to recieve on the tongue and latter take it out to draw less scrutiny.

The "professor" in Minnesota last year who was urging people to steal Hosts convinced an evil person to do so. Someone else videod the person who stole the host and it was widely youtube posted. The person recieved KNEELING, ON THE TONGUE FROM A PRIEST. So you can fantasize all you want about it being a "Communion in the hand" thing - but it's not. It's a SATAN thing.

Mark said...

I really would like to get a copy of the 'Defence of the Seven Sacraments' book. Do you have more details, Mac?

Mac McLernon said...

Click on the UK tour link, scroll down and there's more info on the book.

Click on the links there and it tells you how to buy the book.

It's pricey, but I think it will be worth it...

Mark said...

Thanks for that, Mac. I wonder if there's a UK supplier...

Elizabeth said...

In 1873 the Child Jesus appeared to Mary of the Passion with wounded and bloody hands and said to her ‘People inflicted these wounds on me with their sins’ ‘I am in the Eurcharist to dispense graces and extend mercy, but I receive only ingratitude, profanity and sacrileges. The Eucharist is dishonoured and nobody cares. My beloved one, you make reparation with your adoration done in my presence’
That was over 140 years ago, it appears that nothing changes. May we learn from Blessed Mary of the Passion.

The Real Presence has even been scientifically recorded with the Miracle at Lanciano (700 AD) when a Basilian Monk 'One morning, while having a strong attack of doubt, he began the Consecration of the Mass for the people of the town. He used the same size host which is used in the Latin Rite masses today. What he beheld as he consecrated the bread and wine caused his hands to shake, indeed his whole body. He stood for a long time with his back to the people, and then slowly turned around to them.
He said; "O fortunate witnesses to whom the Blessed God, to confound my disbelief, has wished to reveal Himself in this Most Blessed Sacrament and to render Himself visible to our eyes.
Come, brethren, and marvel at our God so close to us. Behold the Flesh and Blood of our most beloved Christ." The host had turned into Flesh. The wine had turned into Blood'
The Host which turned to flesh is still in Lanciano for all to view. In 1970 scientific research found the following

1.The flesh is real flesh. The blood is real blood.
2.The flesh consists of the muscular tissue of the heart (myocardium)
3.The flesh and blood belong to the human species.
4.The flesh and blood have the same blood type (AB).
5.In the blood, there were found proteins in the same normal proportions as are found in the sero-proteic make up of fresh, normal blood.
6.In the blood, there were also found these minerals: Chlorides, phosphorous, magnesium, potassium, sodium and calcium. The preservation of the flesh and of the blood, which were
left in their natural state for twelve centuries (without any chemical preservatives) and exposed to the action of atmospheric and biological agents, remains an extraordinary phenomenon.

And still people doubt???

George said...

Karen - I agree with you that it's a satan thing (don't give that SOB father of lies the benefit of a capital S for his name!). Thanks for the reminder on this. We all need to be vigilant about these unholy practices and report anything 'odd' to our Priests. Ultimately those satanist creeps will do what they want in whichever way they conive to do it. More fools them, as they are the ones living in a dream world often spouting such idiotic slogans as 'better to rule in hell than to serve in heaven'!

However, my concerns are more about the deep reverence and love that Our blessed Lord truely present in the Holy Eucharist, deserves from us. This is where the richness, beauty and true sense of the Sacred in the Latin Mass shines through like a beacon!

And to receive Our Lord from the consecrated hands of the Priest on the tongue and kneeling, is for me the only way of expressing my deep devotion, love and humility before my Creator.

I also regularly attend weekday Mass in the novus ordo and am perfectly at home because I am still in the presence of Jesus my Lord and Saviour. I do however kneel and receive Holy Communion on the tongue when it comes to my turn in the queue line, and to date have not had any objections from any Priest.

God Bless.

Mac McLernon said...

Mark - try going to the Bevans Inc. link in the post and emailing Bernadette - she was responsible for organising Raymond's tour, and so they are probably the best people to ask about UK supplies of the book...

Ottaviani said...

gemoftheocean - while the professor and Satanists are clearly motivated by the same spirit to desecrate the host: their motives are different. The professor has no faith in the true presence and wanted to disprove transubstantiation from a purely intellectual point of view. Satanists, however, do have faith in the true presence and that is precisely why they desecrate it.

Also according the late Cardinal Eduoard Gagnon of Canada, who was involved in absolving former satanists for desecrating Holy Communion, said that nearly all of them preferred the method of communion in the hand. This was because Satanists were very unlikely to touch a host that has been in someone's mouth for fear of diseases and that most hosts would be unusable for black masses, if they had been in the mouth for that long.

And even if you don't agree with the above, it is undeniable that the with the introduction of communion in the hand, respect for the Eucharist has gone down the toilet.

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