Week 4

We begin with a quote from Saint Peter Julian Eymard on the power of the Sacrifice of the Holy Mass.

“The best manner of assisting at Mass is to unite oneself to the august Victim. Do what Christ does. Offer yourself like Him, with the same intention, and your offering will be ennobled and purified; if it is joined to the offering of Jesus Christ, it will attract God’s attention. Follow Jesus Christ to Calvary, meditating the circumstances of His Passion and Death. But above all, unite yourself to the sacrifice by partaking of the Victim with the priest. It is then that Holy Mass has all its efficacy and answers fully the designs of our Lord. If the souls of purgatory could return to this world, what would they not do to be present at one Mass! If you could understand its excellence, its advantages, and its fruits, you would not let one day pass by without assisting at it. All your duties would thereby be better fulfilled, and your soul would be stronger to bear the Christian’s daily cross.”

This week’s challenge is to increase our weekly commitment to daily Mass from one Mass to two Masses. As we’ve learned, the principal source of grace for the entire world is the Sacrifice of the Holy Mass. A worthy Holy Communion provides countless graces for both ourselves and for others. Without frequent Holy Communion, we stand little chance against the enemy, the flesh, and the world. We are facing evil that is more widespread and prolific than ever before in human history, so we must hold tightly to Jesus in frequent Holy Communion. Just as the early Church lived in an age of martyrs, so we are living in a modern age of martyrs. As Fr. Hardon reminds us, we may not die the death of a martyr, but we will certainly live the life of a martyr in a world that hates disciples of Jesus. So like the early Church, we must receive Him daily, if possible. This may mean adjusting our routine, driving out of our way, or even adjusting our work hours. Whatever it takes, there is no greater priority and need that we have than to receive Jesus’ Real Presence frequently in Holy Communion. Receiving the Holy Eucharist on Sundays alone is no longer enough.

Let us also commit to increasing our time spent in mental prayer to at least 15 minutes daily. Without a commitment to daily prayer, we will not be able to access and receive the abundant grace that God wants to pour into our life through the Holy Eucharist. It might be helpful to review the mental prayer primer and to employ help from our small group to keep us accountable.

Week 4 Challenge Summary

  1. Increase your weekly commitment to daily Mass from one Mass to two Masses in addition to your Sunday Obligation
  2. 15 minutes of mental prayer every day (Review Mental Prayer and Spiritual Reading Primer)

Primers For This Week

(suggested but optional)

  1. Daily Examen and Predominant Passion
  2. Mortification and Fasting
  3. Mental Prayer and Spiritual Reading

Readings For This Week

  1. Why Did Christ Institute the Holy Eucharist as His Bodily Presence on Earth?
  2. The Real Presence: Manifestation of Christ’s Attributes of Wisdom, Power, Love and Mercy
  3. The Real Presence as Communication of Grace

Discussion Questions

  1. As you increase the clarity of your intellect regarding the truths of the Real Presence, how is this impacting your will? Are you living differently and amending your life according to this newfound clarity?
  2. How does the Real Presence as manifestation and communication pertain to Jesus?
  3. How does the Real Presence as profession and imitation demand a response from us?
  4. Of the four divine attributes that Jesus manifests to us in the Real Presence (wisdom, power, love and mercy), which one might be most fruitful for you to pray about and why?
  5. Have you been faithful to spending time in Eucharistic Adoration each week? If not, what barriers are you encountering?
  6. Are you being specific and intentional about bringing your needs to Jesus as petitions during Eucharisitic Adoration and what themes are you seeing as far as your own spiritual needs go?
  7. Are you being specific and intentional about bringing the needs of others to Jesus as petitions during Eucharisitic Adoration? What answers have you received to your prayers for others?
  8. Do you feel called to this week’s spiritual challenge, and do you have a plan to undertake it?