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“He was beautiful!”


There is the story told by Sr. Mary Claude of the Congregation of the Holy Cross in Montreal (1967). Sister Mary Claude and another Sister had gone to visit a sick parishioner. By mistake they called at the wrong house. However the woman who greeted them at the door invited them in and began to ask questions about the faith. Finally, she asked if she could have formal instructions. In the weeks that followed she accepted the doctrine of Christianity eagerly, with one exception: She could not bring herself to believe in the Real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist.

The Sisters suggested that she attend a Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament and they recommended: “When the Host is held up in the monstrance, ask God to help you to believe in the Real Presence.”

The following week the Sisters visited their protégé again and inquired how she liked the ceremony of Benediction.

“He was beautiful!” came the instant and glowing response.

Confused, the Sisters began asking questions, and the neophyte explained that she had seen the Lord leave the monstrance to bless the people and then go back again when the priest returned to the altar. “I saw His wounded side through His pure white garment and the marks of the nails on His hands and feet,” she added. The woman was surprised to find out that her experience had been unusual.

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