VISITS TO THE SEPULCHRE
From Visits to the Most Holy Sacrament, pp. 22-23, by St. Alphonsus Liguori.
Worldlings feel so happy in the society of a friend, that they lose entire days in his company. They who love not Jesus, experience tediousness in remaining with Him in the tabernacle. The saints enjoyed a paradise before the Holy Sacrament. After her death, St. Teresa said from Heaven to one of her religious: “We who rejoice in Heaven and you who suffer on earth ought to be the same in purity and love. And what we do in Heaven before the Divine Essence, you should do on earth before the Most Holy Sacrament.” Jesus then, in the Adorable Eucharist, ought to be our Paradise on earth.
O Immaculate Lamb, immolated for us on the Cross! Remember that I am one of those souls whom Thou hast redeemed by so many sorrows and by so painful a death. Since Thou hast given Thyself entirely to me, and since Thou dost daily offer Thyself in sacrifice for me on the altar, grant that Thou mayest be for ever mine, and that I may for ever belong entirely to Thee. I offer myself to Thee without reserve, that Thou mayest do with me what Thou pleasest. I give Thee my will: chain it to Thyself with the sweet bonds of Thy love, that it may be the eternal slave of Thy most holy will. I wish to live no longer for the gratifications of my own desires, but for the sole purpose of pleasing Thee. Grant me the grace to think only of pleasing Thee, and to desire only what Thou dost desire. I love Thee, O my dear Saviour! with my whole heart. I love Thee because Thou dost desire to be beloved by me. I love Thee because Thou art worthy of all my love. It grieves me that I do not love Thee as much as Thou deservest. I would wish to die for the love of Thee. Lord, accept my desire: give me Thy love. Amen, Amen.
From Visits to the Most Holy Sacrament, pp. 46—48, by St. Alphonsus Liguori.
The venerable Father Francis Olimpio used to say, that there is nothing so much calculated to kindle the fire of Divine love in the hearts of men as the Holy Sacrament of the Altar. Hence our Lord appeared to St. Catherine of Siena, in the Blessed Eucharist, as a furnace of love, from which Divine flames went forth to all parts of the earth. The saint was astonished to find that all men were not on fire with the love of a God who had shown so much love to man. My Jesus, inflame my soul with Thy love. Grant that I may think only of Thee, and that I may desire, and seek, and sigh after Thee alone. O happy me, if this holy fire of Thine shall possess my whole being, and shall continue, during the remainder of my days, to consume in me all earthly affections!
O Divine Word! O my Jesus! I see Thee entirely sacrificed and annihilated on the altar for the love of me. Since, then, Thou dost sacrifice Thyself as a victim of love for me, it is my duty to consecrate myself entirely to Thee. Yes, my God and my supreme Lord, I sacrifice to Thee my whole soul, my whole being, my whole will, and my entire life. O Eternal Father! I unite this poor sacrifice of mine with the infinite sacrifice which Jesus, Thy Son and my Saviour, offered once on the Cross, and which He offers every day so often on our altars. Accept this offering through the merits of Jesus, and give me the grace to repeat it every day of my hie. and to die sacrificing my whole being to Thy honor. I desire the grace bestowed on so many martyrs, to die for the love of Thee. But if I am unworthy of so great a favor, grant me at least, O Lord! the grace cheerfully to sacrifice to Thee my life, by embracing that death which Thou wilt appoint for me. Lord, I desire this grace; I wish to die with the intention of honoring and pleasing Thee. From this moment I sacrifice my life to Thee; I offer to Thee my death whenever and in what way soever it shall happen.
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