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Offline XavierSem

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Do you have the habit or are you interested in the practice of Spiritual Communions? By this means, we make an act of faith in the Blessed Sacrament, an act of contrition for our sins, then we receive Jesus in Spiritual Communion, with thanksgiving, just as we would in Sacramental Communion. We can make Spiritual Communions many times a day, and by God's Mercy, Spiritual Communions, when ardently desired with devout love for union with Our Saviour and God, have effects on the soul similar to Sacramental Communion. To prepare for Spiritual Communion, it is good to offer ourselves completely to God without reserve several times, and offer ourselves to the Eternal Father in union with the Body and Blood of Jesus - so we can pray a Chaplet like that of St. Gertrude, the Holy Wounds, the Angel Prayer at Fatima etc. http://www.catholictradition.org/Eucharist/blessed-eucharist11.htm

Fr. Michael Mueller describes the importance of Spiritual Communions below.

CHAPTER 11 
On Spiritual Communion 

WHEN a soul has once begun to practice frequent Communion, she can no longer live without it. 

Even if she were to communicate every day, it would seem too little. She would desire, if possible, to receive Our Lord every moment. It is the Blessed Sacrament itself which produces this effect, for such is the sweetness of that Divine Food that they that eat it hunger still and they that drink it thirst again. It is Our Lord Himself who excites this desire in the hearts of the faithful, and He also has provided a means of satisfying it. While He was yet on earth, He not only imparted many graces to those who were near Him, but He also wrought many miracles in behalf of those who were at a distance. 
In like manner, He now not only bestows many graces upon us when He actually enters our hearts in Holy Communion, but He also imparts many to us by means of Spiritual Communion. St. Catherine of Siena, while on one occasion assisting at the Mass of her confessor, St. Raymund, felt the most ardent desire to be united to Jesus Christ; but as she had been forbidden to communicate, she did not dare to receive. Our Lord, however, was so moved by the fervor of her love that He worked a miracle in her favor. At that part of the Mass in which the priest breaks the Sacred Host into three pieces, the smallest portion disappeared from the altar, flew through the air and rested upon the tongue of St. Catherine. St. Raymund was much disturbed at the disappearance of the particle, but the Saint relieved his anxiety by telling him that Our Lord Himself had been pleased to communicate her in reward for her great desire for Holy Communion. He displays a similar love towards everyone who has a true desire to be united to Him. As soon as a soul ardently desires to receive Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, He comes to satisfy her desire, not indeed as He did to St. Catherine under the Sacramental species, but by the way of Spiritual Communion. This devotion is so full of grace and consolation that it is of the greatest importance that everyone should know how to practice it. I will therefore say a word in explanation of it. 

Spiritual Communion, according to St. Thomas, consists in an ardent desire to receive our Lord Jesus Christ in the Most Holy Sacrament. It is performed by making an act of faith in the presence of Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, and then an act of love, and an act of contrition for having offended Him. The soul then invites Him to come and unite Himself to her and make her entirely His own; and lastly, she thanks Him as if she had really received Him sacramentally. 

The Spiritual Communion may be made in the following manner: "O my Jesus, I firmly believe that Thou art truly and really present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love Thee with my whole heart, and because I love Thee, I am sorry for having offended Thee. I long to possess Thee within my soul, but as I cannot now receive Thee sacramentally, come at least in spirit into my heart. I unite myself to Thee as if Thou wert already there; never let me be separated from Thee."

 The graces which are bestowed in this way are so great that they may be likened to those which are imparted by an actual reception of the Sacrament. 

One day Our Lord Himself told St. Jane of the Cross that as often as she communicated spiritually she received a grace similar to that which she received from her Sacramental Communions. He also appeared to Sister Paula Maresca, foundress of the Convent of St. Catherine of Siena at Naples, with two vessels, one of gold and the other of silver, and told her that in the golden vessel He preserved her Sacramental Communions and in the silver vessel her spiritual Communions. The Fathers of the Church go so far as to say that one who has a very great desire for Communion, accompanied with great reverence and humility, may sometimes receive even more graces than another who, without these dispositions, should actually receive Our Lord in the Sacramental species; for as the Psalmist says: "The Lord hears the desire of the poor, and fills their hearts with good things." 

The advantages of this mode of Communion are very great. To practice it, you will not need to go to church or make a long preparation or remain fasting; you will not need to ask the permission of your confessor, or to seek a priest to give it to you as in Holy Communion. Hence, the venerable Jane of the Cross used to say: "O my Lord, what an excellent mode of receiving without being seen or remarked, without giving trouble to my spiritual father, or depending on anyone but Thee, who in solitude dost nourish my soul and speak to my heart." 

But the chief advantage of Spiritual Communion is that it may be so often repeated. You can receive Sacramental Communion at most but once a day, but Spiritual Communion you may receive as often as you please. St. Alphonsus advises one who wishes to lead a devout life to make Spiritual Communions at his meditations, at his visits to the Blessed Sacrament and whenever he hears Mass. But especially he should endeavor to multiply them on the eve of his Communions because, as Father Faber of the Society of Jesus remarks, they are most powerful means to attain the dispositions necessary for a good Communion. The Saints were much addicted to this devotion. 

The Blessed Angela of the Cross, a Dominican nun, was accustomed to make a hundred Spiritual Communions every day and a hundred more every night, and she used to say: "If my confessor had not taught me this method of communicating, I could scarcely live." If you ask how she could make so many, I answer with St. Augustine: "Give me a lover, and he will understand; give me a soul that loves nothing but Jesus Christ, and she will know how to do it." 
Do make Acts of Consecration to the Twin Hearts, Spiritual Offerings of the Precious Blood of Jesus in Union with the Holy Mass, like in St. Gertrude's Chaplet, along with Spiritual Communions at least every hour. The Saints say Spiritual Communions are a way to quickly advance to Union with God.

Online Incredulous

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  • Thank you for the beautiful topic XavierSem!

    Spiritual Communions are going to become increasing important to the remnant Church faithful
    "Some preachers will keep silence about the truth, and others will trample it underfoot and deny it. Sanctity of life will be held in derision even by those who outwardly profess it, for in those days Our Lord Jesus Christ will send them not a true Pastor but a destroyer."  St. Francis of Assisi


    Offline XavierSem

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    Sure, Incredulous. You're welcome. :) The great advantage of Spiritual Communion, as Father Mueller tells us, is that it can be made every day, or even many times a day - thus we never break our union with God in all we do, but have close communion with Him throughout the day, making it less likely we will sin gravely. It would be good to begin to make it every day, then perhaps every third hour of the day, then even every hour of the day. Some Saints have done that and others recommend it. Every time we desire to receive Our Lord in Spiritual Communion, offering ourselves totally to Him, and offering ourselves with His Body and Blood to the Eternal Father, we receive graces almost comparable to Sacramental Communion, according to the Fathers and Doctors of the Church. Thus, it is good to Communicate often, and regular Communion like this is a great means to obtain perseverance in grace, freedom from all mortal sin, and therefore final salvation. We can also make it upon rising together with our morning offering, and before rest at night along with an act of contrition.

    There was a discussion on First Saturday and the Five First Saturdays to which the promise of perseverance was attached by the Blessed Mother. If not possible to go every first Saturday to church, we can offer Our Lord and Our Lady Spiritual Communions instead. The graces granted may not exactly be the same, but they will be quite similar. We can do the same on First Fridays. And the practice continued for a long time, as the book explains, will have discernible effects in our spiritual growth. The Eastern liturgy of St. James applies this text to Holy Communion, Psa 33:[9] "O taste, and see that the Lord is sweet: blessed is the man that hopeth in him."
    Do make Acts of Consecration to the Twin Hearts, Spiritual Offerings of the Precious Blood of Jesus in Union with the Holy Mass, like in St. Gertrude's Chaplet, along with Spiritual Communions at least every hour. The Saints say Spiritual Communions are a way to quickly advance to Union with God.

    Offline XavierSem

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    Happy Easter, everyone.

    "A prayer of spiritual Communion with Jesus can be made in a matter of seconds and repeated often throughout the day. The prayer is highly thought of by the Church since it is indulgenced (see Manual of Indulgences, 4th Edition, p.51). To make a spiritual communion you can simply say the following prayer in a recollected manner:

    “My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament. I love You above all things, and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot at this moment receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You“ (From sacredheart.com).

    "The prayer of spiritual communion – which may even be made without words in the yearnings of our heart – shows our deep hunger for the Eucharist; it further shows our deep desire to be united to the Eucharistic life of Christ; it shows, as well, our profound love for the Sacrament of Love!

    You can make this prayer throughout the day on days when you are unable to attend daily Mass, or you can say the prayer throughout the day as preparation for your next Holy Communion at Mass ... “Saint Francis de Sales resolved to make a spiritual Communion at least every fifteen minutes so that he could link all the events of the day to his reception of the Eucharist at Mass” (7 Secrets of the Eucharist, pp. 85-86). Flynn relates that Saint Maximilian Kolbe also made frequent spiritual Communions (p.86).

    ... Saint Leonard of Port Maurice, who said:“If you practice the holy exercise of spiritual Communion several times each day, within a month you will see your heart completely changed” (!) (7 Secrets of the Eucharist, pp. 97-98 )

    In his book, Jesus our Eucharistic Love, Father Stefano Manelli explains what the effects of a well made spiritual communion may produce. He says, “Spiritual Communion, as St. Thomas Aquinas and St. Alphonsus Liguori teach, produces effects similar to Sacramental Communion, according to the dispositions with which it is made, the greater or less earnestness with which Jesus is desired, and the greater or less love with which Jesus is welcomed and given due attention.”

    Two other books which highly recommend this practice of making spiritual Communions are: The Blessed Sacrament by Father Faber (beginning at p. 438 ) and The Blessed Eucharist by Father Muller (Chapter 11). Surely, this practice of making spiritual Communions will draw you closer to the Lord, and make you more desirous of receiving Him sacramentally at Holy Mass.

    The practice of spiritual communion secures our life-long love of the Eucharist, for the Eucharist is constantly close to our heart. By this efficacious practice, our hearts are always longing to receive Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

    Spiritual communion is a great preparation for Holy Communion at Mass.

    “Oh Mary, Mother of the Eucharist, please place in our hearts profound gratitude for the Holy Eucharist.”

    Taken From: https://catholicstrength.com/2017/09/20/the-efficacious-practice-of-spiritual-communion/
    Do make Acts of Consecration to the Twin Hearts, Spiritual Offerings of the Precious Blood of Jesus in Union with the Holy Mass, like in St. Gertrude's Chaplet, along with Spiritual Communions at least every hour. The Saints say Spiritual Communions are a way to quickly advance to Union with God.

    Offline XavierSem

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    Pope St. Pius X, and the Council of Trent, said it was the will of the Church that we should receive Holy Communion, our Daily and Supersubstantial Bread (Mat 6:11 and Luke 11:3) daily. And so, we should strive to live in such a way as to receive Him daily. "The Holy Council of Trent, having in view the ineffable riches of grace which are offered to the faithful who receive the Most Holy Eucharist, makes the following declaration: "The Holy Council wishes indeed that at each Mass the faithful who are present should communicate, not only in spiritual desire, but sacramentally, by the actual reception of the Eucharist." These words declare plainly enough the wish of the Church that all Christians should be daily nourished by this heavenly banquet and should derive therefrom more abundant fruit for their sanctification."https://www.ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDWFREQ.HTM (SACRA TRIDENTINA On Frequent and Daily Reception of Holy Communion: Pope St. Pius X: Issued and approved by Pope Pius X on December 20, 1905)

    Devout reception of the Holy Eucharist, through the increase of charity, removes venial sins, and gives strongest graces to avoid mortal sin in future. His Holiness Pope St. Pius X continues to explain "This wish of the Council (of Trent) fully conforms to that desire wherewith Christ our Lord was inflamed when He instituted this Divine Sacrament. For He Himself, more than once, and in clarity of word, pointed out the necessity of frequently eating His Flesh and drinking His Blood, especially in these words: This is the bread that has come down from heaven; not as your fathers ate the manna, and died. He who eats this bread shall live forever. From this comparison of the Food of angels with bread and with manna, it was easily to be understood by His disciples that, as the body is daily nourished with bread, and as the Hebrews were daily fed with manna in the desert, so the Christian soul might daily partake of this heavenly bread and be refreshed thereby. Moreover, we are bidden in the Lord's Prayer to ask for "our daily bread" by which words, the holy Fathers of the Church all but unanimously teach, must be understood not so much that material bread which is the support of the body as the Eucharistic bread which ought to be our daily food. 

    Moreover, the desire of Jesus Christ and of the Church that all the faithful should daily approach the sacred banquet is directed chiefly to this end, that the faithful, being united to God by means of the Sacrament, may thence derive strength to resist their sensual passions, to cleanse themselves from the stains of daily faults, and to avoid these graver sins to which human frailty is liable; so that its primary purpose is not that the honor and reverence due to our Lord may be safe-guarded, or that it may serve as a reward or recompense of virtue bestowed on the recipients. Hence the Holy Council calls the Eucharist "the antidote whereby we may be freed from daily faults and be preserved from mortal sin.

    The will of God in this respect was well understood by the first Christians; and they daily hastened to this Table of life and strength. They continued steadfastly in the teaching of the apostles and in the communion of the breaking of the bread. The holy Fathers and writers of the Church testify that this practice was continued into later ages and not without great increase of holiness and perfection.

    Piety, however, grew cold, and especially afterward because of the widespread plague of Jansenism, disputes began to arise ... Accordingly, the Sacred Congregation of the Council, in a Plenary Session held on December 16,1905, submitted this matter to a very careful study, and after sedulously examining the reasons adduced on either side, determined and declared as follows:
     1. Frequent and daily Communion, as a practice most earnestly desired by Christ our Lord and by the Catholic Church, should be open to all the faithful, of whatever rank and condition of life; so that no one who is in the state of grace, and who approaches the Holy Table with a right and devout intention (recta piaque mente) can be prohibited therefrom.
    2. A right intention consists in this: that he who approaches the Holy Table should do so, not out of routine, or vain glory, or human respect, but that he wish to please God, to be more closely united with Him by charity, and to have recourse to this divine remedy for his weakness and defects.
    3. Although it is especially fitting that those who receive Communion frequently or daily should be free from venial sins, at least from such as are fully deliberate, and from any affection thereto, nevertheless, it is sufficient that they be free from mortal sin, with the purpose of never sinning in the future; and if they have this sincere purpose, it is impossible but that daily communicants should gradually free themselves even from venial sins, and from all affection thereto ... 9. Finally, after the publication of this Decree, all ecclesiastical writers are to cease from contentious controversy concerning the dispositions requisite for frequent and daily Communion. 
    All this having been reported to His Holiness, Pope Pius X, by the undersigned Secretary of the Sacred Congregation in an audience held on December 17, 1905, His Holiness ratified this Decree, confirmed it and ordered its publication, anything to the contrary notwithstanding."

    Let all this spur us further to imitate the Saints: "“Saint Francis de Sales resolved to make a spiritual Communion at least every fifteen minutes so that he could link all the events of the day to his reception of the Eucharist at Mass” ...  Saint Leonard of Port Maurice, who said:“If you practice the holy exercise of spiritual Communion several times each day, within a month you will see your heart completely changed” (!) (7 Secrets of the Eucharist, pp. 97-98 ) We must receive Sacramental Communion daily or as often as possible. We must have great desire to be entirely surrendered and wholly transformed by continual union with Him. Spiritual Communion even more frequently. The Doctors and Saints tell us that it becomes morally impossible to attain holiness and perfection if we neglect this means.
    Do make Acts of Consecration to the Twin Hearts, Spiritual Offerings of the Precious Blood of Jesus in Union with the Holy Mass, like in St. Gertrude's Chaplet, along with Spiritual Communions at least every hour. The Saints say Spiritual Communions are a way to quickly advance to Union with God.


     

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