Priest: ‘Loving the Eucharist takes time’

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Fr. Gil Manaog of the Sacred Heart parish in Tacloban City, Leyte administers communion. (Photo: Aurora Poblete)

TACLOBAN City, Leyte, April 17, 2016 – Like all truly life-changing things, to truly have a devotion and love for God in the Eucharist takes time, says a priest.

“Love demands time because when you love you need to give time,” said Fr. Gil Manaog, an Opus Dei priest, at an all-female recollection yesterday at the Sacred Heart Parish in this city.

He egged on the faithful to devote time with the Eucharistic Lord if they really love Christ.

Spending time with Jesus

“Why don’t you storm the tabernacle, visit Christ in the Blessed Sacrament and start a conversation with him?” asked the priest.

The priest said the Eucharist is the greatest proof of God’s tremendous love for mankind, thus it is fitting that the faithful devote time conversing with Christ in the Eucharist.

Manaog added: “Spending time with the Lord, in the Eucharist, in the Blessed Sacrament, is more than touching many saints,” pertaining to Catholics’ habit of touching images of saints’.

In order for one to develop what he calls “Eucharistic soul,” the faithful must find inspiration and consolation in the Holy Eucharist, be able to believe that Christ stays behind in the Eucharist, and develop the habit of Eucharistic adoration, especially on Thursdays.

Eucharistic devotion, Manaog said, can help one appreciate the Holy Mass where the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist is administered.

In doing this, he added, Catholics will fully understand the essence of the Holy Eucharist as a sacrament in the Holy Mass.

‘Eucharistic mystery’

Calling it the “Eucharistic mystery,” he stressed that the Eucharist, not the host in the Mass, but the Blessed Sacrament itself is the actual and continuing presence of Christ.

Manaog further emphasized, “When you receive the Communion, you go to heaven,” because “the Eucharist is the source of spiritual life.”

In homilies, priests have repeatedly reminded churchgoers to receive the Holy Host in a state of grace or to first confess their sins in the Sacrament of Reconciliation before the Mass.

Manaog, who is the current head priest of Sacred Heart Parish, observed that people are so busy with many things that they tend to forget about God.

He also commented on people’s being engrossed more with having many friends, who at times will just betray them, rather than seeking friendship with Christ who is “faithful and sincere.”

“God is always available whenever we want to pray, especially in churches where the Eucharist is reposed in the tabernacle,” he stressed. (Eileen Nazareno-Ballesteros / CBCPNews)

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