The Real Presence…

Dear Readers,

Several of you have requested to know more about my encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist. In response, I include here an excerpt from my book, taken from the chapter called, “The Gold Leaf”:

. . . In 1997, the year leading up to the millennium that the Holy Father, John Paul II, had dedicated to Jesus. . . I was inspired to ask for a closer relationship with Jesus. I could not have imagined how intimately God would answer that prayer.

That summer I was given a book to read that came highly recommended, He and I, by Gabriel Bossis. As I read the author’s personal conversations with our Lord, my heart was deeply moved. The book captivated me with its intimate tone. I read and re-read that book, eventually giving away dozens of copies.

Beyond deeply moving me, reading He and I opened my heart to the still, small voice of the Holy Spirit. That summer marked the beginning of a new phase in my life as I entered into a personal relationship with the risen Jesus. As Scripture says: “Whoever is in Christ is a new creation: the old things have passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5: 17).

After having been given a taste of the Lord’s nearness, I craved more. I decided during Advent of that year to spend a few evenings a week alone at the church with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament—that was when all heaven broke loose! The first time I went, I heard these words interiorly: “I’m so glad you came!” The words pierced me to the core.

In addition to words, during those visits the Lord poured his love into my heart, a sliver at a time, for a sliver was all I could take. These encounters were overwhelming and often left me in tears, tears that I later realized served to cleanse and heal me in many ways.

. . .

Early in 1998, I spoke to a spiritually mature friend about these experiences. When I explained that I felt I was hearing the Lord speak to me, she said that she “happened” to be reading a booklet by Fr. Robert DeGrandis on the charismatic gift of prophecy and that what I was experiencing seemed to fit the description he gave of the gift. I read the book (devoured it). It certainly seemed to confirm what she had said.

Shortly after giving me the first book, the same friend gave me a book entitled Prophecy in the Local Church, by Anglican Bishop David Pytches, which I also devoured. In the book there was a story of a man who had a vision of an angel on the roof of a church. There was a hole in the roof. The angel was shoveling what appeared to be gold leaves onto the congregation, but no one was picking them up. The man asked the angel what this meant. He replied that the leaves were God’s gifts and that no one was bothering to pick them up.

On the same day that I read that story, we visited the cemetery where our son, Benjamin, is buried. Normally I am very unobservant, but as I walked among the graves I happened to notice something shiny on the ground. I picked it up, and to my utter astonishment, it was a gold leaf! It had been a woman’s earring; nevertheless, it was a gold leaf! A friend explained that this type was made by pouring molten gold onto a real leaf. The process burned away the membrane and left only the delicate gold-covered veins of the leaf. It was breathtakingly beautiful! Real gold and a real leaf! (photo of my gold leaf)

To this day I am amazed whenever I pick it up. I treasure this gold leaf as a beautiful symbol of the many gifts my Father has given to this unworthy creature of his. I felt it was a powerful confirmation of my gift; it has carried me through more than one crisis of faith.

I do not wish to give you the impression that this conversion experience was a smooth transition for me. On the contrary, this encounter with the living God was rather an earthquake in my life. It affected my family in unexpected ways. At one point feeling quite stressed, I was doubting the gift and grieving the loss of a “normal” life. I cried out, “I just want my life back!” Soon, I started to feel like my old self. I still heard the “voice” albeit more faintly, but I had no special feeling of the Lord’s presence. After a few days I asked him why I no longer felt his presence. He replied without judgment, “You took your life back.” It was a statement about a choice freely made.

The following Sunday, the Feast of the Ascension, I asked pardon and gave my life back to Jesus. I felt very keenly his presence at Mass, and later on felt him tell me this:

“I am still here. As you know I never left you. Even when you turned away, I stayed with you. Believe that I am leading you. Take my hand and follow. One life, two bodies, this is what I desire. . . .”

The next day, while praying the rosary I heard, “A personal encounter with Christ must change your life.”

From that time on, I felt more peaceful about my call. I remember telling a friend later on how this encounter with God had a similar effect on me as on a person winning the lottery—you go a little crazy at first!

. . .

22 thoughts on “The Real Presence…

  1. Thank you for sharing this!

    And also for suggested reading such as that book, “He and I”.

    Been edging ever closer to Jesus since 2007 when I started to receive communion every other week at a relative’s church. The priest wasn’t checking cards, he just offered and I, unbelieving little protestant, took.
    Jesus, I believe, must have been delighted to work his wonders in this way. I went from an non-Eucharist believer to a full blown follower of the Lord who quickly converted.
    Been glad I did.

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  2. Your inspirations are such a blessing and comfort to me…and a confirmation of what ifeel in my soul..but this that you shared stirs me in a different way. For years and years I have prayed to feel His presence, and i never do-i know he is here because of my faith…but i feel nothing. Perhaps I have not given him my life? What was it like being With Him, that you wanted your life back?-and how did you “Give” it back to him>I would love to hear your insight if you don’t mind sharing….. God Bless you-Kathy

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    1. Praise God for leading you here Kathy. I will tell you that I no longer feel his presence as I used to. God reveals himself in special ways, not for our pleasure or consolation necessarily, but for a purpose. In my case it was for this mission. At this point I am walking by faith not by sight. Once, while I was still feeling him strongly, I felt him tell me, “Feel my love.” I prepared myself for a wave, but nothing came. Then I realized that his love is there whether we feel it or not.

      If you wish to be united to Jesus learn the way of contemplative prayer, which is the highest form of prayer (not to be confused with “meditation”). Ralph Martin’s book, Fulfillment of all Desire is one of the best books around on that. God be with you in all things, dear sister.

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    1. God bless you dear sister. The other thing I thought to mention is that we are not to crave supernatural experiences, but only receive them according to God’s timing. The reason is that the evil one is more than willing to give us all the supernatural experiences we want and may impersonate anyone as we know. I would say, to always pray, Thy will be done O Lord.

      Peace.

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  3. I also would like to share some experiences, that have been so spiritually filling, and yet like Pelanito said, it is knowing and not craving. During mass, althought it does not happen lately, I had been filled with tears that just poured, but not crying when the Eucharist was held high during concecration. I had a vision of Christ decending in white with a red robe crossing over and around his left shoulder. He decended when the priest was blessing the Eucharist, and in unison with the priest He also blessed the Eucharist. I looked around and wondered if anyone else saw this, but I don’t know. This was such a gift for me … and I am not worthy. May we praise Him, adore Him and be one body. Amen.
    God Bless you Pelanito for sharing. This constantly inspires me.

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  4. God bless you for sharing, Dee Marie. Our Lord is pouring his graces on so many in this age. “Where sin abounds grace abounds all the more.” So it shouldn’t surprise us! How beautiful that our Lord revealed himself to you on the altar. May his holy name be praised in all things by all people forever!

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  5. Beautiful story! God is so good! I read He and I and was touched by it. I just recently sent it to Catholic inmates in prison. There is a lady who collects them and distributes them to any inmate who wants Catholic books. Thank you for sharing your story on the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist 🙂 The Lord is doing amazing things in our days.

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  6. I found a reference to your blog on Mark Mallet’s, and I believe I was led here. The words of the Lord, “You took your life back”, stilled me.

    You see, I lost a son some years ago. I’m now almost in my mid 40s, but since his passing, I’ve waited to be given another baby boy. The wait took a toll on me, and month after month of disappointment finally left me so bereft that I asked the Lord if it was indeed right that I should want to have another child as this age. Last year, in a vivid dream, I believe He spoke – a nun dressed in gray, appeared in the dream and when praying for me, she was told that the Lord asked if I was willing to have, not one, but twins?

    I took it to mean that baby was on the way.

    Yesterday, again, the prayer was not answered, and I reached the end of my hope line. I broke down and sobbed to God to, Reach in and take away the hope.
    I couldn’t continue to live in the cycle of hope-disappointment again; I wanted out.

    I awoke this morning, functioning, but distinctly feeling that a flame had died within me. Guilt told me it had to do with my howling.

    And now, seeing the words, You took your life back – I’m convinced of it.

    I immediately asked pardon from the Lord.
    I guess I’m back in the business of hoping and being disappointed.

    Thank you, thank you so much.

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    1. Caitlynn that is very moving. I am so sorry for your pain. Perhaps it would help you to read the posts on trust. On the right sidebar is a catgories list. Pick that category or any other that speaks to uou and I guarantee you will find comfort. I will pray for you.

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  7. Thank you for sharing. I think God wants this relationship with all of us. The outpouring of the Spirit for you which brings you closer and closer seems to be what we all should be living/experiencing. My desire for Him is strong and my need greater. In this season I am going to ask with as much conviction, trust and faith as I can.

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    1. Kent, a book I often recommend is Ralph Martin’s “Fulfillment of All Desire”. A beautiful compilation of the teachings of some of the Doctors of the Church on Contemplative Prayer. A must-read (and re-read) in my opinion.

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  8. I’m a regular visitor to Jesus in the Blessed Sacrement
    Looking back I’m amazed how in the chapel My God led me through mt times of suffering, pain, hopes and dreams
    How he spoke to me gently, led me through signs and wonders

    Now I must confess I cannot pray at home as how I can pray there so every spare time I get I run to the chapel

    Yes it is no more my normal life but that is ok, I don’t want my normal life

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  9. “He and I” is a most wonderful book. It can change lives. As you read it, you can feel the love of God’s presence. I read it for the first time just after coming into the Church (in 1993) and just re-read it recently for about the fourth time. It’s a book you Never want to put down!

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