Used by permission. Copyright 2010 Curtis Powell 703
507-7795 All rights reserved.
BY THOMAS A KEMPIS
Nihil Obstat and Imprimatur, 1941
CHAPTER 4: THAT MANY BENEFITS ARE
BESTOWED ON THOSE WHO COMMUNICATE DEVOUTLY
The Voice of the Disciple.
O LORD my God, present Thy servant with the blessings of Thy
sweetness, that I may deserve to approach worthily and devoutly to Thy
Raise up my heart towards Thee, and deliver me from oppressive
Visit me with Thy saving mercy, that I may taste in spirit Thy
sweetness, which plentifully lieth hid in this Sacrament as in a
Illuminate also my eyes, to behold so great a mystery, and strengthen
me to believe it with an undoubting faith.
For it is Thy work, and not man's power; Thy sacred institution, not
the invention of man.
For no one can be found capable of himself to conceive and understand
these things, which transcend even the intelligence of the Angels.
What, then, of so high and sacred a mystery shall I, an unworthy
sinner, who am but earth and ashes, be able to investigate or
2. O Lord, in the simplicity of my heart, with a good and firm faith,
and at Thy command, I come to Thee with hope and reverence; and I
believe truly that Thou art here present in the Sacrament, both God and
Thou willest, then, that I receive Thee, and unite myself to Thee in
Wherefore, I beseech Thy clemency, and I beg of Thee to give me a
special grace, that I may be wholly dissolved in Thee, and overflow
with Thy love, and no more concern myself about any other kind of
For this most high and most worthy Sacrament is the health of soul and
body, the medicine of every spiritual malady; in which my vices are
cured, my passions restrained, temptations overcome or lessened,
greater grace infused, incipient virtue increased, faith confirmed,
hope strengthened, and charity inflamed and enlarged.
3. For Thou hast bestowed, and still oftentimes dost bestow, many good
things in this Sacrament to Thy beloved who communicate devoutly, O my
God, the support of my soul, the repairer of human infirmity, and the
giver of all interior consolation.
For Thou impartest unto them much consolation against their various
tribulations, and Thou liftest them up from the depth of their own
dejection to the hope of Thy protection, and Thou dost interiorly
recreate and enlighten them with a certain new grace; so that they who
first were anxious, and without sensible affection before Communion,
after being refreshed with this heavenly food and drink, find
themselves changed for the better.
And in such a way Thou art pleased to deal with Thine elect, that they
may more truly acknowledge and plainly experience how great is their
weakness when left to themselves, and how much of bounty and grace they
receive from Thee.
For of themselves they are cold, dry, and indevout; but by Thee they
deserve to become fervent, cheerful, and devout.
For who, humbly approaching to the fountain of sweetness, doth not
carry thence some little sweetness?
Or who, standing by a copious fire, doth not derive therefrom some
And Thou art a fountain ever full and overflowing; Thou art a fire
always burning and never failing.
4. Wherefore, if I may not draw out of the fullness of the fountain,
nor drink to satiety, I will at least set my mouth to the orifice of
this heavenly pipe, that so I may draw thence some little drop to allay
my thirst, and may not wholly wither away.
And if as yet I cannot be all heavenly and all on fire, like the
Cherubim and Seraphim, I will still endeavor to follow after devotion,
and prepare my heart, that so I may acquire some small spark of divine
fire by humbly receiving this life-giving Sacrament.
And whatever is wanting to me, O good Jesus, most holy Savior, do Thou
in Thy bounty and goodness supply for me, Who hast vouchsafed to call
all unto Thee, saying: "Come to Me, all you that labor and are
burdened, and I will refresh you."
5. I labor, indeed, in the sweat of my brow, I am tortured with grief
of heart, I am burdened with sins, I am troubled with temptations, I am
entangled and oppressed with many evil passions; and there is no one to
help me, no one to deliver and save me, but Thou, O Lord God, my
Savior, to Whom I commit myself and all that is mine, that Thou mayst
keep me, and bring me to everlasting life.
Receive me, for the praise and glory of Thy Name, Who hast prepared Thy
Body and Blood for my food and drink.
Grant, O Lord, my salvation, that with the frequenting of this Thy
mystery the affection of my devotion may
Ask of Jesus Christ a lively faith in His real presence, and an
ardent love for Him, in the Most Holy Sacrament of the altar.
I BELIEVE, O Lord, that Thou art present, both Body and Soul, in the
adorable Sacrament which I am about to receive. Thou wilt there make me
partake of the merits of Thy blessed humanity, and wilt inebriate me
with the plenitude of Thy Divinity. Change, then, O Lord, change the
indifference of my heart into an ardent desire of loving Thee, of
pleasing and possessing Thee. Permit me not to regard or to receive
Thee with coldness, Who comest to inflame my heart with the fire of Thy
love. Supply in me whatever is wanting of faith in a mystery so
incomprehensible to all human understanding; enliven me with a lively
sense of Thy presence, and grant that my heart may receive Thee as its
God with reverence, as its Savior with confidence, and as its Father
Is it possible, my soul, that, surrounded and replenished with all the
ardor of God's love for thee, thou shouldst still remain all ice in the
midst of so much fire! Alas! O Jesus I how miserable am I to feel so
much eagerness to please myself, and so much indifference about
pleasing Thee! "Lord, if Thou wilt,
Thou canst heal me;" say then to me, as Thou didst say to the
leper: "I will:" be thou
healed of thy tepidity and insensibility.
To Thee do I address myself, O my most amiable Savior, that I
may obtain fervor and fidelity in Thy love. Thou knowest that, full of
myself and of self-love, I am most unworthy and incapable of Thy love;
but I beseech Thee, the God of my heart, to inspire me to copy Thy
virtues, to follow Thine inclinations, and to rely on Thy merits;
instill into my soul Thy meekness, humility, and patience, that so I
may be animated with Thy Spirit, and live by Thee. Amen.