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AN ESSAY ON THE HOLY EUCHARIST AND THE EUCHARISTIC MIRACLES IN NAJU

 

1. THE CONTINUING NEGLECT OF THE HOLY EUCHARIST

A few months ago, during a Marian conference in California, a lady gave a photograph of a Eucharistic miracle in Naju to a priest who was one of the speakers. The priest thanked her and walked away. A few minutes later, someone else saw the same priest tearing the photograph into pieces and throwing them away.

A few years ago, a Catholic publisher told me on the phone: "A bleeding Eucharist is the most superstitious phenomenon in Catholic history." A few days later, when we were talking again on the phone, he said that he was a former priest and asked for prayers.

Almost fifty years ago, in late June 1950, when North Korea invaded the South, some of the Communist soldiers entered Myoungdong Cathedral in Seoul and desecrated the Holy Eucharist by trampling the Sacred Hosts which they took out of the tabernacle.

Our Lord, Who comes to us in the form of bread and wine because He loves us so much, continues to be neglected and humiliated even by many Catholics. On July 2, 1995, Julia Kim of Naju, Korea, wrote down what she saw in a vision:

Many priests were celebrating the Mass in the state of sin. Many of the religious and lay people were eating up the Eucharist without any reverence, not even being conscious of the sinful state of their souls!

Surveys in Korea and elsewhere show that fewer than 30% of the Catholics go to Sunday Mass and even fewer believe in the true, substantial presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist. That there is a serious lack of knowledge of the catechism among Catholics nowadays is a well-known fact, but this problem seems to be particularly acute regarding the Holy Eucharist. Numerous people are approaching the Blessed Sacrament in a careless manner, out of habit, because they do not clearly understand the most important Sacrament in the Catholic Church.

The confusion about the Holy Eucharist actually began two thousand years ago when Our Lord explained it to the Jews for the first time. The Scripture tells us that many of His disciples, after hearing His announcement about the Eucharist, murmured among themselves, "This is a hard saying; who can listen to it?" (John 6:60) and they returned to their former way of life and no longer accompanied him (John 6:66). This is also mentioned in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (#1336):

The first announcement of the Eucharist divided the disciples, just as the announcement of the Passion scandalized them. . . The Eucharist and the Cross are stumbling blocks. It is the same mystery and it never ceases to be an occasion of division. "Will you also go away?" (John 6:67): the Lordís question echoes through the ages. . .

Disagreements about the Holy Eucharist have surfaced again and again in Church history and still are a major cause of division among Christians. Much of the debate on Naju is also about the Holy Eucharist. The Declaration in the Kwangju Archdiocese rejected the Eucharistic miracles in Naju, because, according to the doctrinal presentation in the Declaration, the eucharistic species must remain unchanged even after the consecration. The leading theologian of the Naju Investigating Committee revealed that the real reason for rejecting the Eucharistic miracles in Naju was to promote unity between Catholics and Protestants. His remark seems to be an admission that the theologians in Kwangju were more eager to be accommodating to the Protestants than to determine the genuineness of the Eucharistic miracles in Naju. The debates on the Holy Eucharist are of vital importance to individual Catholics as well as the entire Church. The scope of deviation among many Catholics from the traditional Church teaching on the Eucharist is alarming. However, Our Lord guaranteed that the gates of hell would not prevail against His Church (Matthew 16:18). Therefore, we need not doubt that the truth will be preserved and triumph.

2. CHURCH TEACHINGS ON THE HOLY EUCHARIST

Do the widespread disagreements regarding the Holy Eucharist mean that the Church has not clearly defined and explained her teaching on the Holy Eucharist yet? We can see that such is not the case by reviewing the Church documents. The following are the key doctrines on the Eucharist declared by the Council of Trent (1551) with the authority of infallibility, which all Catholics are to accept with the obedience of faith.

a. If anyone denies that in the sacrament of the most holy Eucharist there are truly, really, and substantially contained the body and blood together with the soul and divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ, and therefore the whole Christ, but shall say that He is in it as by a sign or figure, or force, let him be anathema (DS 1651).

b. If anyone says that in the sacred and holy sacrament of the Eucharist there remains the substance of bread and wine together with the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, and denies that wonderful and singular conversion of the whole substance of the bread into the body, and of the entire substance of the wine into the blood, the species of the bread and wine only remaining, a change which the Catholic Church most fittingly calls transubstantiation: let him be anathema (DS 1652).

By this doctrine, the contention by Luther that bread and wine coexist with the body and blood of Christ in the Eucharist was rejected. Also, the opinion adopted by several theologians in the 17th and 18th Centuries (Emmanuel Maignan, John Saguens and others), which denied the physical reality of the species of bread and wine in the Eucharist and claimed that they were mere illusions, could be rejected based on this doctrine.

c. If anyone denies that the whole Christ is contained in the venerable sacrament of the Eucharist under each species and under every part of each species, when the separation has been made: let him be anathema (DS 1653).

By this doctrine, the views of the Hussites as well as the Protestant reformers, who demanded Communion under both species, were rejected. This doctrine also means that we must treat every little piece of the Sacred Host and every drop of the Sacred Blood with utmost reverence and care. If one lacks faith in the true, substantial presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist and in every part of the eucharistic species, he is likely to treat the Eucharist carelessly.

d. If anyone says that after the completion of the consecration that the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ is not in the marvelous sacrament of the Eucharist, but only in use, while it is taken, not however before or after, and that in the hosts or consecrated particles, which are reserved or remain after communion, the true body of the Lord does not remain: let him be anathema (DS 1654).

e. If anyone says that in the holy sacrament of the Eucharist the only-begotten Son of God is not to be adored even outwardly with the worship of latria (the act of adoration), and therefore not to be venerated with a special festive celebration, nor to be borne about in procession according to the praiseworthy and universal rite and custom of the holy Church, or is not to be set before the people publicly to be adored, and that the adorers of it are idolators: let him be anathema (DS 1656).

The traditional teachings of the Church on the Eucharist were reconfirmed in Pope Paul VIís encylical, Mysterium Fidei (1965), in which Christís Presence in the Eucharist is referred to as "a new reality" in which "Christ, whole and entire, in His physical Ďrealityí is bodily present". Paul VI also warned against the modernist view which was silent about the Transubstantiation and tried to explain the changes in the bread and wine as changes in significance and goals only. According to this view, the changes in bread and wine are not real but symbolic, like a kitchen knife becoming a tool of crime if used by a robber and a white towel becoming a sign of surrender or truce, if waved during a war. This modernist view is basically the same as the Calvinistsí.

3. THE REALITY OF GOD THE SONíS INCARNATION CONTINUES THROUGH THE BLESSED SACRAMENT

The essence of the Church teaching on the Holy Eucharist is that, even though the Eucharist has the external properties of bread and wine, it is not bread or wine at all but truly the whole, living Jesus Christ with His divinity, soul, body and blood. This teaching lies at the heart of the Catholic Faith.

This doctrine also means that we need not envy the Lordís disciples who were with Him two thousand years ago, because we can also be with Him in a true, physical, and intimate way. Of course, there is a difference in the ways Our Lord was physically present then and is now. Our Lord in the Holy Eucharist does not conduct any external physical activity, as it is not the purpose of this sacrament to extend His external activity on earth. He already completed His mission on earth two thousand years ago, revealing all the supernatural truth that is necessary for our salvation, sanctifying human life by living it Himself, suffering and dying in reparation for human sins, and overcoming death by resurrection. However, these historical works of Christ did not fade away into the past but are made present to every human being in all ages (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, #1085). Through the Holy Eucharist, Our Lordís substantial presence continues for an intrinsic union with us; through the Mass, His Sacrifice on the Cross becomes present for us, with the graces from it flowing into our souls; in the Sacrament of Confession, our sins are truly forgiven by the merit and authority of Christ; and, His teachings with divine authority and purity are available to us through the Church. In this perpetual reality of God the Sonís Incarnation and Redemptive Work through His Church, the Holy Eucharist occupies the central position.

4. THE REASONS WHY OUR LORD IN THE EUCHARIST HAS THE APPEARANCES OF BREAD AND WINE

Why does Our Lord conceal His true appearance behind the species of bread and wine in the Holy Eucharist? There may be two reasons.

First, the Eucharist is God the Son Who became incarnate in our world. The infinite dignity proper to His divinity demands that we approach Him with the deepest possible respect and faithfulness. In the Blessed Sacrament, however, Christ is concealing His glory and dignity behind the humble appearances of bread and wine, because He does not want to appeal to our vanity and selfishness but to our genuine faith and love. He is presenting Himself to us in a simple way, because He seeks a childlike response which is not motivated by self-interest but by total trust and love. When we really trust and love the Lord, we can easily overcome the lowliness of the appearances of bread and wine and recognize the most beautiful, holy, and loving Lord with our spiritual eyes. Also, if we have failed to love Him by violating any of His Commandments, it will be our courtesy worthy of Him to make up for it through sincere repentance and Confession before receiving Him in Communion.

Second, Our Lord has the appearances of bread and wine to make it easier for us to receive Him. As bread and wine are foods for our bodies, it seems appropriate that our spiritual food is represented by the signs of bread and wine.

5. THE EUCHARIST AS A PERPETUAL MIRACLE

When Archbishop Giovanni Bulaitis, the former Apostolic Pro-Nuncio in Korea, came to Naju on November 24, 1994, the Blessed Mother gave us the following message:

Today I called you, whom I love most dearly, in a special way to this place where you will experience the Lordís presence and mine as heroic and faithful witnesses so that the Mystery of the Holy Eucharist may be made known all over the world. So, help me hurriedly to save the sheep that have been lost.

I have repeatedly said that the Mystery of the Holy Eucharist, which is the Bread of Life from Heaven, is a spring that never dries and a medicine that gives you salvation. But only very few are making preparation before receiving Him. If my numerous children only knew that the Eucharist is truly the Life, the everlasting spring, the Manna and a perpetual miracle that is no less than the miracles of the Creation of the Universe and of the Redemption, they would not be walking toward hell. . . .

The Holy Eucharist is the center of all the supernatural events, but is being trampled by so many children through sacrilege, insult and humiliation. Therefore, my messages of love must be spread all over the world more vigorously so that the time of the Lord, Who is present in the Eucharist, and of the New Pentecost may be advanced.

A concept in the above message that is considered here is that the Eucharist is "a perpetual miracle" or "a continuing miracle." How is the Eucharist a perpetual miracle? A miracle is a phenomenon in the physical world that occurs by the power of God in a manner that surpasses the natural laws of the physical world. During every Mass, a great miracle occurs at the time of the priestís consecration of bread and wine, when the substances of bread and wine turn into the substances of Our Lordís Body and Blood. This phenomenon is not visible to our eyes, but is a true physical reality that occurs by the power of God, which is totally beyond natural laws or human capabilities. These miraculous conversions of bread and wine into Our Lordís Body and Blood are phenomena of changes that occur instantaneously, resulting in a new physical reality. Then, what is meant by "a perpetual miracle"?

Normally, the appearance (by the appearance or the species is understood everything that is perceived by the senses, such as size, extent, weight, shape, color, taste, and smell) of bread is inseparable from the substance of bread; and the appearance of wine is inseparable from the substance of wine. In easier words, bread looks like bread and wine looks like wine. In the Blessed Sacrament, however, the appearances of bread and wine continue, while the substances of bread and wine are absent, because the substances of bread and wine have been replaced by the substances of Our Lordís Body and Blood. The appearances of bread and wine cannot be said to inhere in and be sustained by the substances of Our Lordís Body and Blood, because the appearances of bread and wine are not proper to the substances of Our Lordís Body and Blood. Therefore, the appearances of bread and wine in the Eucharist continue without a subject (The Roman Catechism II 4, 13), which is naturally impossible. This amazing condition is made possible only because it is being sustained by a special intervention by God, not just for one moment or a short period of time but as long as the appearances of bread and wine in the Eucharist continue. In other words, the external signs of bread and wine in the Blessed Sacrament are not sustained naturally but by a special and continuing intervention by God. It seems to be in this sense that the Blessed Mother in Naju referred to the Eucharist as "a perpetual miracle". Therefore, when we are before the Blessed Sacrament, we should have a profound sense of awe and gratitude, because we are facing an ongoing miracle of God Who calls us to overcome the external appearances of bread and wine with faith and recognize and accept the incarnate God the Son with love and adoration.

So, when a Eucharistic miracle occurs, it may be thought of as "a suspension of the perpetual miracle in the Eucharist." In other words, during a Eucharistic miracle, God discontinues to sustain the appearances of bread and wine in the Eucharist in order to expose the inner reality of the Sacrament, which is the Body and Blood of Our Lord. Thus, a Eucharistic miracle is a sign from God as His own testimony to the awesome true reality of the Eucharist. St. Thomas Aquinas wrote on this subject as follows:

This is not deception, because it is done to represent the truth, namely, to show by this miraculous apparition that Christís body and blood are truly in this sacrament. (Summa Theologica, Part III, Question 76: Of the Way in Which Christ is in This Sacrament, Article 8)

6. DO THE MIRACULOUS CHANGES IN THE EUCHARISTIC SPECIES CONTRADICT THE CHURCH TEACHING?

The Declaration on Naju by the Kwangju Archdiocese included the following statement regarding the Eucharistic miracles in Naju:

The alleged phenomenon, that as soon as Mrs. Julia Youn received the Eucharist, it was changed into a lump of bloody flesh in her mouth is also contrary to the doctrine of the Catholic Church that says that even after the bread and wine are transubstantiated into the body and blood of Christ with the formula of priestsí consecration, the species of bread and wine remain (cf. Pope Paul VIís Mysterium Fidei; DS. 782, 802, 1321, 1640-1642, 1652). (Underline added)

Among the Church documents mentioned above as the grounds for rejecting the Eucharistic miracles in Naju, the most relevant one is the doctrine declared by the Council of Trent (DS 1652):

If anyone says that in the sacred and holy sacrament of the Eucharist there remains the substance of bread and wine together with the body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, and denies that wonderful and singular conversion of the whole substance of the bread into the body, and of the entire substance of the wine into the blood, the species of the bread and wine only remaining, a change which the Catholic Church most fittingly calls transubstantiation: let him be anathema. (Underline added)

The validity of the negative judgment on the Eucharistic miracles in Naju by the Kwangju Archdiocese crucially depends on whether the above-quoted doctrinal presentation in the Kwangju Declaration conforms to the above-quoted doctrine by the Council of Trent. The following is a discussion of the probable problems.

(1) The Kwangju Declaration says that the species of bread and wine remain even after the transubstantiation of bread and wine into the body and blood of Christ by the priestís consecration. The doctrine issued by the Council of Trent says that the entire substances of bread and wine change into the body and blood of Christ, the species of the bread and wine only remaining. Are these two statements essentially the same? They can be, if no other connotations are added that alter the original meaning of the doctrine.

In the Kwangju Declaration, the connotation that the species of bread and wine must remain after the consecration is present. In the Korean text of the Declaration, the Korean equivalent of "must" is in the sentence itself, while it exists only in the context in the English text. In both texts, the meaning that the species of bread and wine must continue to be unchanged even after the consecration is clear, because the miraculous changes in the eucharistic species in Naju were rejected on the basis of this doctrinal presentation in Kwangju.

Then, is this meaning of "must" present in the doctrine issued by the Council of Trent? The correct answer has to be "No". This doctrine was intended to explain the effects of the priestís consecration, which are the changes in the substances only without any changes in the species. The doctrine means that the appearances of bread and wine remain unchanged despite the consecration. In other words, the consecration does not have the power to alter the species of bread and wine. Obviously, this is different from saying that the species of bread and wine must continue even after the consecration. If this latter statement were correct, even the natural changes in the Eucharist inside our bodies after Communion may also have to be denied.

(2) In the 8th Century, a priest was celebrating Mass in Lanciano, Italy, while strongly doubting the presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist. As soon as he said the words of consecration, the appearances of the Eucharist changed into those of flesh and blood. This miracle has been officially approved by the Church. It would, however, be in conflict with the Church teaching as presented in the Kwangju Declaration, because the species of bread and wine did not remain after the consecration in that miracle in Lanciano. If the changes in the eucharistic species occurred by the power of the priestís consecration, that would violate the Church doctrine. However, if such changes occurred by a special intervention by God, they cannot be in conflict with the Church teaching.

Likewise in Naju, the Eucharistic miracles cannot be said to have violated the Church doctrine, because it has never been claimed or perceived that these miracles involving changes in the eucharistic species occurred by the power of the priestís consecration. It is not right to reject the possibility of Godís special work on the basis of a Church doctrine that explains what normally happens in a Sacrament. Or is it a reluctance to recognize that God sometimes does use miracles as special ways of communicating with His people? Such a reluctance is not mentioned in the Kwangju Declaration, but there seems to be an inclination to deny even the possibility of Eucharistic miracles, because, according to the doctrinal presentation in the Kwangju Declaration, all of the Eucharistic miracles in Church history would violate the Church teaching. A reluctance to be open to the possibility of miracles would be a reluctance to accept the following Church doctrine issued by Vatican Council I:

If anyone shall have said that miracles are not possible, and hence that all accounts of them, even those contained in Sacred Scripture, are to be banished among the fables and myths; or, that miracles can never be known with certitude, and that the divine origin of the Christian religion cannot be correctly proved by them, let him be anathema (DS 3034).

(3) The Kwangju Declaration does not contradict the Church teaching that Our Lord is truly, substantially present in the Eucharist, as the doctrine of transubstantiation is mentioned in the Declaration. However, the Declaration seems to represent a weakening of the faith in the traditional Catholic teaching on Christís substantial presence in the Eucharist, because it rejects the miracles that reveal the true inner reality of the Blessed Sacrament and also says: Such phenomena do not enhance the faith of people in the Eucharist existing under the species of bread and wine. On the contrary, they seem to act as an element which causes a great confusion and embarrasses the peoplesí faith in the Eucharist. Besides, the leading theologian in the Naju Investigating Committee said in an article in Pastoral Care, a monthly Catholic magazine in Korea that the real reason for the rejection of the Eucharistic miracles in the Kwangju Declaration was to promote unity between Catholics and Protestants. Therefore, it seems that the Kwangju Declaration had been influenced by a thinking that does not correctly defend the traditional Catholic Faith in the Eucharist.

7. CAN THE SACRED HOSTS THAT DESCENDED TO THE CHAPEL IN NAJU BE UNCONSECRATED HOSTS?

There has been another kind of Eucharistic miracle in Naju, involving descents of the Sacred Hosts. On November 24, 1994, during the visit to Naju by Archbishop Giovanni Bulaitis, the Apostolic Pro-Nuncio in Korea at that time, the Eucharist descended twice in the Chapel. Most of the first Eucharist was consumed by the people present in the Chapel. A small remaining part and the whole second Eucharist are being preserved in the chapel at Fr. Raymond Spiesí residence near Seoul. On July 1, 1995, during the overnight prayer meeting, seven Sacred Hosts descended together. On July 1, 1996, several Sacred Hosts descended and entered Juliaís mouth. During Bishop Paul Kimís visit on June 12, 1997, a large Eucharist descended and later on the same day was taken to the Kwangju Archdiocesan office. On July 13, 1997, a large Eucharist descended again, this time while a monsignor from Rome was visiting. This Eucharist was consumed by the monsignor. On August 27, 1997, a large Eucharist descended during Fr. Spiesí visit and was later taken to the Kwangju Archdiocesan office. This last descent of the Eucharist was videotaped with two cameras on the ceiling in the Chapel, which are turned on when there are important events like overnight prayer meetings and visits by bishops. All together, the Eucharist descended seven times in Naju between July 1, 1995 and August 27, 1997.

A question has been raised regarding whether what came down in the Chapel in Naju were unconsecrated hosts. First, if the descents of the hosts were fabricated by humans, they can be unconsecrated hosts. However, according to hundreds of witnesses and the video recordings and still photos taken during the miracles, there is no indication whatsoever that these descents of the hosts were human works. Second, could it be the devilís work? It is unthinkable that the devil brings the real Eucharist. Then, can he bring unconsecrated hosts? It seems improbable that God will allow such confusing events to happen, but the possibility cannot be rejected entirely. Has there been any evidence for believing that the descents of the hosts in Naju were not caused by the devil?

The seven hosts that descended on July 1, 1995, were consumed the next day in obedience to the Kwangju Archbishopís instruction. The host that was received by Julia turned into visible flesh and blood in her mouth a few seconds after she received it. When a priest dipped his finger in the blood on Juliaís tongue and blessed a dying baby girl in her motherís arms, she was cured. Some of the blood stains collected on a piece of white cloth was later subjected to a DNA test in a medical laboratory at Seoul National University and was found to be human blood.

Also, usually immediately prior to a descent of the Eucharist, Julia saw Our Lord suffering and bleeding on the Cross and His Blood turning into white Sacred Hosts, which then descended to the Chapel. The descent of the Sacred Hosts was witnessed by many in the Chapel.

In the Kwangju Declaration, it is stated that the hosts that descended in Naju cannot be recognized as the real Eucharist, because there is no evidence that they were consecrated by priests. However, according to the above-mentioned vision seen by Julia, Our Lordís Blood turned into the Eucharist, which was a change in the species only without any change in the substance. This change in species was not a transubstantiation. Therefore, it did not require consecration by a priest. It is also possible that the Eucharist was brought from a tabernacle by angels as happened in other similar miracles in Church history.

Lastly, if the miracles in Naju occurred by the power of God, is it possible that He sent unconsecrated hosts? This would be impossible in view of Godís truthfulness. If unconsecrated hosts were sent when people would perceive them as the real Eucharist, confusion would have resulted. This would contradict the dogma that God is infinitely truthful and is the truth itself.

Therefore, the only reasonable conclusion regarding these miracles is that true Eucharist came down to the Chapel in Naju.

8. WERE THE EUCHARISTIC MIRACLES IN NAJU "INTENTIONAL"?

Some say that the alleged Eucharistic miracles in Naju are suspected of being intentional, because some of them occurred in the presence of the Pope and Bishops. Then, do they mean that miracles can be genuine only when they occur accidentally and randomly to anybody? We are not talking about just "strange phenomena" but the signs which occur by the Providence of God Who is leading the history of human salvation. Then, in order for the signs and miracles to be genuine, they must occur by Godís Will, namely, His Intention. Apart from Godís Will and Plan, there cannot be genuine miracles. The Incarnation of God the Son, the miracle in Cana, the coming back to life of Lazarus, Our Lordís Resurrection and Ascension, the Blessed Motherís Assumption, the Blessed Motherís apparitions in Paris, Lourdes and Fatima, . . . none of these were accidental or apart from Godís intention. It should not be difficult for anyone to understand why God has been showing special signs to the Pope, Bishops and priests who are pastors of His people. Through Moses, God showed miracles repeatedly to Pharaoh, the King of Egypt. Through Juan Diego in Guadalupe, God gave the Miraculous Image of Our Lady to Bishop Zumarraga. We need not suspect the special signs that God sent to His ministers because they seemed to be "intentional."

9. THE CHURCH ALLOWS FREEDOM OF CHOICE TO THE FAITHFUL REGARDING HOW THEY RECEIVE COMMUNION

It was about 1,200 years ago, the 9th Century, when Catholics began receiving Communion on the tongue only, receiving Communion in the species of bread only, and using unleavened bread out of their deep respect for the Blessed Sacrament and the priesthood. Only a few decades ago, the Apostolic See gave permission to the bishopsí conferences in several countries allowing Communion in the hand. The intention was not to discourage the traditional way of Communion on the tongue but only to allow Communion in the hand as another way of receiving Communion. In some countries like Korea, however, Communion in the hand has practically become the rule. Those who try to receive Communion on the tongue, even including visitors from abroad, are asked to receive Communion in the hand instead. Pope John Paul II remarked about this practice in his encylical: Dominicae Cenae, February 24, 1980, addressed to all the Bishops in the world:

In some countries the practice of receiving Communion in the hand has been introduced. This practice has been requested by individual episcopal conferences and has received approval from the Apostolic See. However, cases of a deplorable lack of respect towards the eucharistic species have been reported, cases which are imputable not only to the individuals guilty of such behavior but also to the pastors of the church who have not been vigilant enough regarding the attitude of the faithful towards the Eucharist. It also happens, on occasion, that the free choice of those who prefer to continue the practice of receiving the Eucharist on the tongue is not taken into account in those places where the distribution of Communion in the hand has been authorized. . . To touch the sacred species and to distribute them with their own hands is a privilege of the ordained, one which indicates an active participation in the ministry of the Eucharist. It is obvious that the Church can grant this faculty to those who are neither priests nor deacons. . .

10. CONCLUSION

The greatest task facing us in the Church now is to expel the modernist errors and tendencies from the Church and restore the splendor of the authentic Catholic Faith. The first requirement in achieving this goal would be to re-establish a firm trust in the revealed truthónamely, the authentic Church teachings. The totality of these teachings must be recognized as gifts from God Himself rather than human works. Especially the widespread confusion about the Holy Eucharist must be overcome. At the same time, a profound trust in and love for the Blessed Mother, who is the essential companion to the Lord in His Work of Human Salvation, must be restored. God willingly chose Mary as the (secondary and, yet, essential) principle of Godís the Sonís Incarnation. Then, we must accept Godís will and follow His way by also relying on Mary in following Christ and His teachings and in pursuing an intimate union with Him in our daily lives. A lady belonging to a Protestant denomination told her Catholic friend: "When I get sick, I go to a doctor, not to his mother." However, we go to a doctor in this world for a limited purpose of receiving treatment of our physical illness. Our relationship with doctors, lawyers, technicians, businessmen, and so on is a limited, businesslike one. Our relationship with the Lord, on the other hand, involves total dedication, love and trust. God is our Father, our Lord and our everything. Also, Godís world is a kingdom and a family. In a kingdom, there are a king and a queen as well as subjects. In a family, there are a father and a mother as well as children. If we can imagine the emptiness and lack of warmth in a family without the mother, we should also be able to understand how necessary the Blessed Mother is to each one of us in the Church, which is truly Godís family. Besides, God has so filled the Blessed Mother with His Love and Holiness that she has become the surest help and guide for us to come closer to God. If we truly believe that the Eucharist is Our Lord, it should not be difficult for us to realize that Our Lady is the Mother of the Eucharist.

óSang M. Lee
(from Mary's Touch, October 1999 newsletter)



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