The sixth chapter of St. John’s gospel takes us to the core of our Church. Everything and anything Catholic flows from the Real Presence of Jesus Christ here in the Blessed Sacrament. Christ’s Presence among us in the Blessed Sacrament is the summit and source of our lives together in the Church. It is the heart of the matter. I can remember as a boy participating in Forty Hours Devotions, Eucharistic Adorations, Corpus Christi Processions, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, reciting prayers of thanksgiving after Mass, genuflection to the Presence, visits to the Blessed Sacrament, fasting from midnight prior to receiving Holy Communion the next morning, and other practices – all built up from and pointing toward our contact with Jesus Christ truly and really present in the Blessed Sacrament. We were careful always to refer to the consecrated host as the Body of Christ; we never spoke of it simply as “the bread”. We referred to the consecrated wine as the Precious Blood, never “the wine”. In those days, when Catholic men passed by a Catholic church they tipped their hats (in those days men wore hats) to acknowledge and reverence the Presence of Christ in the tabernacle. Women covered their heads with hats, shawls, babushkas and even hankies while in church.
Isaac victim of Abraham’s Reverence for God