Naju and history (further reflections on the Eucharistic Miracle).
Two questions have been raised. The Council of Trent teaches us that it is the glorified and immutable body of Christ that is present in the Eucharist. How can the Eucharist bleed or change into living, bleeding flesh? Secondly, what purpose is there to such a miracle?
Eucharistic miracles in history
The history of the Church records more than one hundred and sixty recorded and approved miracles associated with the Eucharist. I shall present only two, which record the change of the Eucharist host into bleeding flesh: the miracles of Lanciano and Bolsena in Italy.
At the beginning of the eighth century a Basilian monk of Lanciano (near Chieti) was tormented by doubts after pronouncing the words of consecration. Before his eyes the Sacred Host visibly changed into flesh, except in the center where the sacramental species remained intact. The consecrated wine changed into a bright red blood which coagulated into five small clots. This miraculous host and blood have been preserved to the present day. The Holy See commissioned a group of scientists for laboratory research in 1970. The Osservatore Romano of April 3, 1971 reported their findings, which confirmed that the blood is real blood and the flesh is real flesh. Both belong to the same person and the flesh is from the heart, composed of cardiac muscle tissue.
(For a more complete report see the May 1972 issue of Immaculata, Kenosh, Wisc.)
The second miracle adduced is the story of the monk, Peter of Prague. It was the time of the Eucharistic controversies of the thirteenth century. Peter was celebrating Mass in the church of Saint Christina in Bolsena in 1263. He was assailed by doubts in the truth of the Eucharist. He continued to celebrate. As he pronounced the words of the host, the unleavened bread turned into flesh and began to bleed profusely.
News reached Rome quickly and the Pontiff, Pope Urban IV, who was in Orvieto at the time, set out for Bolsena. The local bishop was bringing the miraculous host in procession. When the Pope and the Bishop met at the Bridge of the Sun at the entrance to Orvieto, the Pope fell to his knees in adoration of the Eucharistic Lord, whose bleeding Eucharistic Body lay on the corporal. The corporal has been preserved in the Orvieto cathedral to the present day. The following year, August 1264, the Pope instituted the feast of Corpus Christi in honour of the Blessed Sacrament and he commissioned St. Thomas Aquinas to write the office. St. Thomas authored the hymns O Salutaris Hostia, Tantum Ergo and Adoro Te Devote.
The Church has acknowledged the authenticity of these Eucharistic miracles, as it has, in a preliminary fashion, acknowledged such miracles with bleedings of the Eucharist in Venezuela and elsewhere in this decade. Although the diocesan commission of Kwangju has not yet spoken on the twelve Eucharistic miracles that have taken place in association with Julia Kim, two bishops, Archbishop Giovanni Buleitis, the papal pro-nuncio to Korea and I have authenticated our own experiences. Archbishop Buleitis has been following the other events of Naju and has favourably recommended them to Pope John Paul II.
To the astonishment and dismay of the sceptics since September 22,1995, the Holy Father himself has become privy to the same miracle of the Eucharistic host becoming a living heart during the celebration of Mass in his papal chapel in the Vatican on October 5, 1995, when Julia Kim received communion from his hands. Although the Pope has not spoken himself of this as yet, the most recent publication in English in the messages and miracles of Naju includes the report on the Vatican miracle and includes the text of the messages.
To what purpose?
The second question is, to what end or purpose. First, out of His infinite compassion for us, for the countless numbers who had and continue to have problems with the Catholic doctrine of the Eucharist, Jesus gives His heavenly confirmation: the Eucharist is truly the Body and Blood of Christ, present under the species of bread and wine.
Secondly, in Naju Jesus gives the miracles of the weeping and bleeding statue of His Blessed Mother, and now His own Eucharistic miracles, to confirm the authenticity of the heavenly messages communicated to us through Julia Kim. Heaven is serious in its warnings and call to penance, to return to the fount of Divine Mercy before it is too late. These miracles, and especially the Eucharistic miracles, are the appeal of Divine mercy to forgive our sins and to save us, even at this eleventh hour, from the horrendous punishments for sins, not only of the world, but of the Church and her members.
There is a growing loss of faith and apostasy among those claiming to be Catholics. He laments over his priests:
"If my priests who celebrate Mass daily would truly believe in and seek to experience this Presence with their whole heart and would live the sublime and marvellous Divine Reality ... innumerable souls would be purified and would live in My merciful heart with a grace that is beyond all expectation."
Private but observable
The events around Julia, her messages and the phenomena, are private revelations that must be discerned by the Church. The weeping and bleeding in tears of the statue of the Virgin, though of the order of private revelation, are first and foremost observable phenomena, which can be submitted to scientific examination.
The Eucharist which changed into the flesh of the human heart and blood is also an observable phenomenon. At the same time it is also a reality to be accepted by faith. We believe with faith that every host and drop of wine that has been validly consecrated is the Body and Blood of Our Lord. The consecrated species are signs of the substantial presence of the living Christ. All these are supernatural events that could be realised only by the power of God, present in the mystery of Christ in the Eucharist.
There is one last lesson to be learned from this Eucharistic miracle of Naju. Jesus has chosen to transform the host, a sign of the Divine Bread, into the sign of His love, the heart. He appeared to Saint Gertrude in the Middle Ages and to St. Margaret Mary Alacqoque in the seventeenth century, to reveal to them the mystery of His love by showing them His Heart. In these our times Jesus has chosen to reveal to us the living reality of that Heart that so loved us; and not only of His own heart, but the dynamic and living love of the Blessed Trinity.
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|Date:||Jun 1, 1996|
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