Saturday, March 26, 2016

When the Light is Out, is Anybody Home?

Catholic Churches all over the world are empty of the Savior today. There is no red Sanctuary light. The Tabernacle is barren of the True Presence. I have not been in Church for a while since my disabilities have become more pronounced; but I recall many times, shaking my head in utter dismay when I watched folks coming into church and genuflecting on Holy Saturday. Some may say that it's just automatic to genuflect before entering the pew. Perhaps ... but then what does that say for when the Light is ON and Jesus IS in the Tabernacle? So many have forgotten the old ways. The TRUTH before it was watered down. 
I'm going to take just a little tiny section and expound on it, in hopes it might spark some interest for folks to take it further on their own. 

The sanctuary candle (or lamp) is burned continually in a Catholic or Orthodox church as a sign of the continual Real Presence of Jesus Christ, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity, under the appearance of the Host (Bread) kept the Tabernacle (the gold box) in each church building. The candle is a sign to those who wish to pray that Jesus is truly Present, looking at each person with love, listening to their prayers, and giving them the grace needed to deal with the problems of life. The only day of the liturgical year on which the sanctuary candle is not lit is Holy Saturday (following Good Friday), when Jesus is removed from the Tabernacle (safely reposed elsewhere until the Easter Vigil) as a reminder to the faithful of His absence when He was in the tomb after His death on the Cross. 

So often I have seen folks during the years that genuflect while speaking to their neighbors and not even looking towards the Tabernacle. I'm sure if Jesus was sitting on a Throne they would show a bit more reverence. Do folks not believe in the REAL PRESENCE anymore? Has the catechesis not been adequate to explain this in CCD and RCIA classes?

When we enter a Church, the Sanctuary light lets us know that Jesus is truly Present, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity in the Tabernacle under the guise of Bread (the Consecrated Host). We have seen throughout history many Eucharistic Miracles where the Host has Bled. Several instances of independent labs have stated that it's always the same type of Blood AB+ I believe and where there are Fleshy parts, it's always Heart Tissue. How do scientists in different states and countries come up with the same analysis unbeknownst to each other? Do folks CHOOSE *not* to believe in the True Presence because if they did, they would have to change their lives a bit and maybe let go of some worldly goals?

What is the most excellent BEST in the world compared to the least significant of heavenly eternity? It's NOTHING! GARBAGE! But (as they say), I digress. Point is, that we should be MINDFUL of Jesus' Presence and when we genuflect, do so with REVERENCE, as if He WERE sitting on a throne in full view! AND, we should genuflect TOWARDS THE TABERNACLE where HE IS. Bowing our heads as we genuflect (as we should be doing whenever His Precious Name is mentioned) is also desirable.  The genuflection should be full with your knee touching the floor (unless of course you are physically disabled ... but even then one can reverently bow the head and make the sign of the Cross).

I used to spend time with Jesus in the Tabernacle. Sometimes it would be just Him and me there ... it
was BEAUTIFUL and so profoundly serene. Of everything I can no longer do, this is what I miss the most. Still, I have sometimes asked Jesus to take a little piece of my heart to place in every Tabernacle of the world to console Him in His lonely prison when He's left unattended. Just as Jesus said to Peter, James and John in the Garden ... "Could you not watch with Me one hour?" We seem to have time for everything else in life ... even for foolishness! Yet, so often Jesus waits patiently for someone to come asking for His grace, keeping Him company, sharing their love with Him ~ frequently to no avail. THE best time you will ever spend on earth will be keeping Jesus company in the Tabernacle!

We say we love our Jesus ... we acknowledge He died a cruel torturous death for our salvation; yet we don't take time to really learn and study and PRAY to know Him better and love Him more? We spend more time planning a vacation or devote our time to a hobby or recreation. Think about this, really. All things of the earth are passing before our eyes. Jesus gave ALL He had to bring us eternal life with the Trinity in a place that we can't even conceive of the beauty! How IS it we put Him on the back burner most if not all of the time?

So please ... when you enter a Church, know what the Sanctuary lamp is there for ... look for the Tabernacle and genuflect as if Jesus was seated on His Throne before you. Then talk to HIM .. not your neighbors. He's there for YOU ... please be there for HIM. 

So on Holy Saturday, no need to genuflect before entering the pew
.... when the light is out, there's No One home. 

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