First Published in 1868.
TAN Books and Publishers
Imprimatur, 1867

The Excuses of Those Who Do Not Communicate Frequently

AFTER having heard of the great desire of Jesus  Christ to unite Himself to us in Holy Communion and the great benefit which we reap from such a union, we might naturally expect to find men eager to avail themselves of a means of grace so rich and so powerful. But our greatest misery is that we are blind to our true happiness. Such is the deceitfulness of sin and the subtlety of the devil that almost everyone has some reason to give why he at least should not receive Communion frequently, and thus all the arguments I have presented in favor of frequent Communion are frequently set aside under the most silly and frivolous pretexts. It will not be without utility to consider in detail the reasons which are alleged for such strange conduct, and I will therefore, Dear Reader, call up before you the various classes of Catholics who do not often approach Holy Communion, and I will examine the excuses which they give, that you may judge of their validity. I will make the examination class by class.

Why do you not go often to Communion?
1st Excuse. Because I do not receive the great graces you spoke of in the preceding chapter.
Answer. How do you know that you do not receive them? Is it because you do not feel them? But this is no certain proof that you do not really receive them. If you were sick and had no relish for food, would the food on that account cease to nourish you? Now it is the same with regard to the Blessed Sacrament, the spiritual food of your soul. Consolations and delights are graces which God bestows when and upon whom He thinks fit; and if He often deprives His servants of them, it is to try them, to keep the humble and to give them an opportunity of meriting greater graces. As corporeal food nourishes you and makes you strong without your perceiving it, so also does this heavenly food silently and imperceptibly enrich your soul with grace. You cannot see a plant grow, but you can see very well that it has grown; in like manner you do not see your soul grow in the spiritual life by receiving Holy Communion, yet experience shows you that it really does grow. You now live in the fear of God; you have not committed a mortal sin for years, perhaps not even in your whole life. You do not grow lukewarm in the practice of virtue; you fulfill your duties faithfully. Are not all these great graces and favors? And are they not all the admirable effects of Holy Communion? Is not the remedy that protects us from disease better than one that restores us to health? But let us suppose the truth of what you allege. I ask you why do you not receive great fruit from this Sacrament? Do you prepare yourself sufficiently? Do you not approach the altar negligently? Do you consider beforehand what you are about to do; and afterwards, do you reflect sufficiently on what you have done? Or do you commit venial sins willfully and with full deliberation? Are not these the reasons why you fail to derive from the reception of this Sacrament that profit which others draw from it? If so, you must ascribe the fault to yourself that Holy Communion does not produce in you all the fruit it should.

Why do you not receive Holy Communion frequently?
2nd Excuse. I fear to lose my reverence for it: the proverb says: "Familiarity begets contempt."
Answer. I admit the proverb is true in regard to men, but not in regard to God. The more familiar you become with men, the more faults and defects you discover in them, and on this account you will feel less respect for them; but this is not the case in regard to God. The more intimate you become with Him and the oftener you approach Him, the better you become acquainted with Him, the more perfections you will discover in Him, and the more you will love Him. Is it not a blasphemy to say that conversing with God makes man worse and more wicked and that, in order to be a Saint, one must withdraw from Him? Can the most perfect exercise of religion derogate from the respect which we owe to this
Sacrament? When do you make acts of faith, hope, love, adoration and humility if not after Communion? The Church prescribed daily Communion in the first ages of Christianity, and she now strongly recommends it by the Council of Trent. Can the Holy Church recommend or advise anything sinful?

Why do you communicate so seldom?
 3rd Excuse. Because I fear to receive Holy Communion unworthily.
Answer. I suppose you mean by this that you do not know for certain that you are in the state of grace. It is true we are required to be in the state of grace, but we are not required to have any greater certainty of it than that which is ordinarily given to good Christians. Will you wait till an Angel comes down from Heaven to tell you that you are in the state of grace? Do you not know that you can place far more reliance on the assurance of your confessor than in that of an Angel? If an Angel should appear to you, you might have some reason to fear that it was the devil come to deceive you; but you know that in listening to your confessor you have the promise of Christ that you shall not be led astray. Hence, St. Alphonsus says: "Place more confidence in the minister of God than in the revelations of all the Angels of Paradise." He adds, moreover, that there is no species of disobedience more hurtful than to omit a Communion prescribed by one's confessor, because such disobedience proceeds from a want of humility. Therefore, when you have the permission of your director, go forward with confidence. No one goes tremblingly to a feast, but cheerfully and joyfully. The Son of God does not appear on our altars under the appearance of bread in order to be regarded with fear, but to be approached with love and desire. Besides, if you fear to approach this Sacrament, do you not also fear to stay away from it? The Son of God declares in the parable of the great supper that the guests who declined their lord's invitation were entirely excluded from his friendship, even though their excuses for staying away had some plausibility. Should not this example cause you to fear?

Why do you not communicate often?
4th Excuse. I wish indeed to do so and trust that I am in the state of grace, but I am so much afraid of committing a sacrilege.
Answer. One never commits a sacrilege without intending it. This is but a deceit of the devil. Oh execrable malice! He seduced our first parents by the promise of a happy life to eat of that fruit which brought death into the world, and now he makes every effort to prevent Christians from eating the true Bread of Life by inspiring the fear that it may prove the cause of eternal death!

Why do you not communicate often?
5th Excuse. Because I commit so many faults, that it would seem like presumption to receive Holy Communion often.
Answer. It is no presumption for one who has many imperfections and defects to go often to Communion. Nay, it is not presumptuous to go, even though one commits many faults, provided they are not altogether willful and deliberate. Do you think you will commit fewer faults by staying away from Communion? Can you avoid sin without God's grace? And how will you obtain His grace if not from this Sacrament? I would rather advise you to go often because you are so imperfect, for the longer you stay away, the more imperfect you will become. The Church teaches that the Holy Eucharist is food and medicine at the same time; food for the healthy and medicine for the sick. Hence a holy Dominican nun used to say: "For my part, being sensible of my unworthiness, I would wish to communicate three times a day, for by more frequent Communion I should hope to render myself more worthy." Did not the Son of God answer to the Pharisees who were scandalized at seeing Him eat with sinners: "They who are in health need not a physician, but they that are sick." You say, "I am not worthy," thinking perhaps that such a sentiment proceeds from humility; but you ought to know that generally it shows greater humility to receive frequently than to receive seldom, because one who receives frequently, by applying so often a remedy to his sickness, acknowledges his infirmities. If indeed your abstaining from Holy Communion really proceeds from humility, it is not displeasing to God, but it would be a thousand times more acceptable to Him if you would join confidence to your humility. Fear is good, but love is far better.
The Vision of St. Frances of Rome
c. 1615

One day when St. Frances of Rome was going to receive Communion, the devil said to her: "How can you, who are so full of venial sins, dare to receive the Immaculate Lamb!" She instantly perceived that the enemy intended to deprive
her of so great a joy, and silenced him by spitting in his face. After this the Blessed Virgin appeared to her, and having praised her conduct, she said that our defects, instead of being an obstacle, should be an incentive to Communion, since in Communion we find the remedy for all our miseries.

Why do you communicate so seldom?
6th Excuse. Because I am not holy enough to receive Holy Communion worthily.
Answer. If you mean that, in order to receive Holy Communion worthily, it is required to have a holiness equal to His Whom you receive, then not even the Blessed Virgin was worthy. If you mean that it is necessary to have a purity without spot, then the Apostles were unworthy, because even they had imperfections and defects; and much more so were the first Christians, and yet they communicated daily. If you mean only that it is required to make a suitable preparation, the Church declares that the necessary preparation consists in not having knowingly a mortal sin on your conscience which you have not confessed, although indeed she advises and exhorts her children to a better and more perfect preparation, namely, to endeavor to avoid venial sins and strive earnestly to correct their faults. What is it, then, that keeps you back from Holy Communion? Do not fancy that the Son of God requires as a preparation for the reception of a Sacrament what is properly its fruit, effect and end, any more than a physician requires a sick person to be healthy as a preparation for taking medicine. Holiness and purity of soul are the effects of this Sacrament, according to the declaration of the Council of Trent; is it not then folly and injustice to demand them as a necessary preparation for its reception? Tell me, if those virtues were required, who could ever communicate, even at Easter?

Why do you stay away from Holy Communion?
7th Excuse. Alas! I have offended God so often and grievously in my past life that I dare not go often to communicate.
Answer. Have you offended Him more deeply than St. Augustine? Have you committed more sins than St. Margaret of Cortona did before her conversion? And do you not remember that Our Lord one day told this Saint that He would give her confessor a great reward for having advised her to go often to Communion? Or have you forgotten that He said to the venerable Prudentiana Zagnoni: "If you receive Me frequently in Holy Communion, I will forget all your ingratitude"? Remember that it was for the sake of sinners that the Son of God came down from Heaven. If you are truly sorry for your sins, if you have sincerely confessed them all, if you are firmly resolved not to sin anymore, then you have even a special right and claim to go to Communion. Our Lord said: "I am not come to call the just, but sinners to penance."

Why do you not go oftener to Communion?
8th Excuse. I fear that it may come to be a mere custom. 
Answer. A good custom is a good thing. Ought you to give up hearing Mass daily from fear of becoming used to it? Or omit your daily prayers from an apprehension of praying through custom?

Why do you not go often to Communion?
9th Excuse. Because when I do go, I am so cold, distracted and indevout.
Answer. There is a great difference between devotion and the feeling of devotion. One may have much devotion without feeling it at all. Sensible devotion is not always the best, for it is liable to many illusions. Besides this, it does not always depend upon us. God grants it to whom He pleases. If sensible devotion were required, most undoubtedly those who have it not would not be allowed to receive Holy Communion even at Easter. If you feel no devotion, humble yourself before God, but do not stay away from Him. The devotion which is necessary for receiving Holy Communion consists in approaching your Lord with humility, confidence and love; with a desire to honor Jesus Christ, to unite yourself to Him and to obey Him. You say: "I am so cold," but tell me, will you become warm by staying away from the fire? Would it not be wiser to go to Communion in order to become devout? Do you not know that Holy Communion is a fire which enkindles love, devotion and spiritual joy in the heart? Is it not true that the less frequently you receive, the less desire you have to receive, and that the oftener you receive, the more you will wish to receive?

Why do you not receive Communion more frequently?
10th Excuse. Because it seems to me that I feel more devotion when I receive but seldom.
Answer. That may be true, although it is not the general experience; however, it will always be true that if you communicate seldom, your soul will lack grace and fervor. One who kept a continual fast would become very weak and attenuated, although he might take his scanty food with the keenest relish.

Why do you not receive Holy Communion frequently?
11th Excuse. My confessor does not allow me.
Answer. If this is really the case, you must obey-----and supply as well as you can the want of the Holy Sacrament by multiplying spiritual Communions. Say to Jesus Christ: "Lord, I would receive Thee more frequently if I were not prevented by obedience," and He will be pleased with your obedience and your desire for Holy Communion. But are you certain that your confessor is not inclined to allow you frequent Communion? Do you often ask leave to communicate more frequently? This, at least, is in your power, and it is very useful and by no means opposed to the perfection of obedience. Your confessor knows that, to produce great fruit, this Divine food must be eaten with hunger, and as long as you show but little eagerness for the Holy Sacrament, he will not advise or permit you to communicate often. But perhaps you have asked for it several times, and he has not granted your request. Well, and how did you ask? Did you imitate St. Catherine of Siena, who when deprived of Communion by her confessor, exclaimed: "Father, give my soul its food!" Had you, like her, manifested with humility and resignation this holy hunger, your confessor would have treated you very differently; but because you appear cold and not unwilling to be repulsed from Communion, he prudently abstains from advising you to receive it very often.

Why do you receive Holy Communion so infrequently?
12th Excuse. I have not time to prepare myself as I ought.
Answer. How much time do you need for preparation? Must you spend the whole morning in prayer or in reading pious books? St. Teresa received Communion every day for twenty-three years; do you think she had nothing else to attend to? I think she was more busy than you will ever be. The first Christians went daily to Communion; do you imagine their occupations were of less consequence than yours, or their family affairs less troublesome? Shall I tell you the reason why the Saints and first Christians were able to prepare themselves for daily to Communion? They were more fervent than the Christians of the present day and had a greater love for Jesus Christ. If you foresee that you will not have time in the morning to prepare for Communion, endeavor the preceding evening to make some preparation by reading some pious book and making the acts which ought to be made in the morning; or rise a little before the usual time, and spend whatever time may be at your disposal in preparing yourself as well as you can; or endeavor to perform the duties of your state with a view to please God, and you may rest assured that this will be an excellent preparation for your Communion. St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi used to say to her sisters in religion: "Offer to God all your actions as a preparation for Communion; perform them with the intention of pleasing Him, and communicate."

Why do you not communicate often?
13th Excuse. I abstain in order to avoid the remarks of others.
Answer. If you communicate by the advice of your confessor and through a desire of correcting your faults and advancing in Divine love, you need not be disturbed at what others may say about you. Father Avila used to say that they who censured their neighbors for receiving Communion frequently perform the office of the devil. Why, then, should you pay attention to such people? If it be wrong to listen to the devil, is it right to listen to his agents? Do you not know that everything good must meet with contradiction? Let people say what they please; at the Day of Judgment they will find out their mistake, and then they will despise you for having listened to them.

Why do you communicate so seldom?
14th Excuse. Because the Church does not command me to receive oftener than once a year, and in obeying her I cannot go astray.
Answer. If the Church commanded you to eat meat or drink wine only once in the year, would you be so exact in keeping to the letter of the law? The Church requires us to abstain from flesh-meat on Fridays and to fast during Lent and at certain other seasons; do you never, for a slight cause, seek exemption from this precept? How is it that for the most part those who are such literal interpreters of the law of Easter Communion are so lax in the observance of the law of fasting? How is it that they who find one Communion a year just enough generally complain of one Lent a year as a great deal too much?  Ah! I fear that faith and reverence for the Church have but little share in this excuse and that the real reason of your urging this precept is the earthliness and sordidness of your affections. Your desires are low and groveling; you have more relish for the food of the body than for the food of the soul. With the Israelites in the desert, you prefer the good things, of Egypt to the Manna that comes from Heaven; and your taste is so corrupted by the impure pleasures of the world, that you can find no delight in the sweet fountains that flow from the Saviour's side. Believe me, this is no good sign; it is a sign of great danger; for as the Royal Prophet has said, "Behold, they that go far from God shall perish." But I have another remark to make on your excuse.

You have not represented the precept of the Church quite exactly. You have left out an important word. The Church says that her children must receive Holy Communion "at least once a year." I will tell you: In former times Christians were accustomed to communicate every day, and then their lives were holy and edifying and chaste and humble; and infidels and heretics, struck by the purity of their manners, were converted in crowds to the Faith. But in after ages, luxury crept in, and the world and the flesh had sway, and too many grew cold in love and lost their relish for this heavenly food.

And now what can the Church do to cure the evil? If she were to make it obligatory to receive Holy Communion frequently, she would run the risk of multiplying mortal sins and of plunging her imperfect members more deeply into guilt. She uses, therefore, a wise and loving moderation, and as a tender mother, when every other expedient fails, speaks sternly to her sick child and forces it to take the food or medicine which is absolutely necessary to life-----she enjoins, under pain of mortal sin, a single Communion in the year, as the least which can be required of a Christian!
But is this all that she wishes us to do? Oh no! She desires that we should continually nourish ourselves with the Bread of Life. In the Council of Trent she bewails the disuse of daily Communion and earnestly exhorts all the faithful to a frequent use of this sanctifying food. Since then you insist so much on obedience to the Church, show the spirit of an obedient child, and fulfill her ardent wish. It is true you will not fall under her censures if you receive but once a year, but you will be a much better Christian if you receive more frequently.

Why do you communicate so seldom?
15th Excuse. I do not see any necessity for it! There are many others who do not receive oftener than I do-----that is, once or twice a year-----and yet they are good Christians; yea, as good as those who receive very often.
Answer. I will not dispute your assertion. No one knows the heart of another, and I rather wish that you should form as charitable a judgment as you can of your neighbors who do not receive often. Neither will I say of all those who go often to Communion that they are exactly what they ought to be. But scarcely anyone will affirm that persons who communicate but once or twice a year are, generally speaking, as exemplary in their conduct as those who communicate frequently.

Point out to me those whom you consider the most pious; who live in the world without following its manners or adopting its principles; who, when adversity overtakes them, are calm and resigned to the will of God, and when it overtakes their neighbor, are ready for every act of charity; who are meek and kind, rich in good works and fond of prayer; who are constant in their attendance at Mass, diligent in seeking spiritual instruction, faithful in their duties and edifying in their conversation-----and I will show you these same persons regularly at the altar every month, fortnight, or week; yes, even oftener. Grant that among these frequent communicants there is but one who lives a truly devout life, still you have sufficient evidence of the fruit of this Sacrament, for you know that no one can live holily without the grace of God and that this Sacrament was instituted to impart grace to us in an abundant measure. "I am come that they may have life, and may have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)

But after all, is this the proper way to reason? Do not ask whether others are good Christians, but whether you yourself are. You know a good Christian means something more than one who does not rob or commit murder or such like crimes. A good Christian means a person who endeavors to keep his heart pure in the sight of God and to overcome pride, envy, avarice, unchasteness and gluttony, to which his lower nature is so prone. Now, do you find within you no sting of the flesh, no movements of hatred or desires of revenge, no rebellion of pride? Palladius tells the story of a young man who, after endeavoring for a long time to corrupt a virtuous married woman, and finding her chastity proof against all his assaults, sought to revenge himself upon her through the intervention of the devil. By the permission of God, the evil one caused her to assume the appearance of a wild beast, and her husband, greatly distressed at so horrible a transformation, took her to St. Macarius, that by his prayers and blessing she might be delivered from the malice of the devil. The Saint easily effected this by his power with God; and after the good woman was restored to her natural appearance, he gave her this advice: "In future go more often to Communion than you have hitherto done, for know that the reason why God permitted you to appear in such a form is your negligence in not having received Communion for five successive weeks. So it has been revealed to me from on high. Remember it and take it to heart."

Five weeks! And you stay away for five months; yea, for an entire year, and find no necessity for receiving more often? And do you think the devil has been idle and that no hideous transformation has taken place in your soul in the eyes of the Angels? Has not your soul become a sow in impurity, or a tiger in rage, or a viper in treachery, or a filthy creeping worm in its low and groveling affections?

I leave it to yourself to answer. God grant that it may not be so. I know that it is the testimony and experience of the Saints that with all their efforts and continual use of the Sacraments they found it a hard thing to keep their hearts clean; and if for a short time they were prevented from receiving the Bread of Heaven, their hearts became withered and dry, and they exclaimed: "I am smitten as grass, and my heart is withered because I forgot to eat my Bread." (Ps. 101:5) I also know that Holy Scripture says: "They that go far from Thee shall perish." (Ps. 72:27)

And now, Dear Reader, I think you have come to the same conclusion, that there is no valid excuse for not communicating frequently and that, for the most part, they who give these excuses are influenced by a secret unwillingness to lead a Christian life in good earnest. They are unwilling to practice retirement, detachment from creatures and self-denial. They stay away from Communion as long as they can in order to avoid the rebuke of Jesus Christ for their sensuality, pride, vanity, uncharitableness and sloth. Miserable are the consequences of such a course of conduct. Not being able to find true peace of heart in religion, such men seek their consolation in exterior things and multiply faults and imperfections in proportion as they withdraw from God. And what is most lamentable is that not infrequently their venial sins lead them into mortal sins and they live in such a state for months, remaining in constant danger of being overtaken by a sudden and unprovided death, the just punishment of their ingratitude and indifference towards Jesus Christ.

I have saId "for the most part," for I know there are cases in which reluctance to receive this Sacrament proceeds from a vain fear of irreverence, inspired by the teaching of misguided men. I have said enough already to show the groundlessness of such a fear and its injuriousness to God; would that I could sufficiently express its hurtfulness to souls.

St. Vincent de Paul, when speaking of this subject, used to relate the following story: A noble and pious lady who had long been in the habit of communicating several times a week, was so unhappy as to choose for her confessor a priest who was imbued with the principles of the Jansenistic heresy. Her new director at first allowed her to go to Holy Communion once a week; but, after a while, he would not permit her to go oftener than once a fortnight; and at last he limited her to once a month. The lady went on in this way for eight months, when wishing to know the state of her soul, she made a careful self-examination; but, alas! she found her heart so full of irregular appetites, passions and imperfections that she was actually afraid of herself. Horror-struck at her deterioration, she exclaimed: "Miserable creature that I am! How deeply have I fallen! How wretchedly am I living! Where will all this end? What is the cause of this lamentable state of mine? I see! I see! It is for no other reason than for my having followed these new teachers and for having abandoned the practice of frequent Communion." Then, giving thanks to God, Who had enlightened her to see her error, she renounced her false guide and resumed her former practice. Soon after, she was enabled to get the better of her faults and passions, and to regain tranquility of heart. Oh how effectually do such men perform the work of the devil! The great adversary of mankind has nothing so much at heart as to keep men back from the means of grace, especially the Blessed Eucharist. In his warfare against the faithful, he acts as the nations bordering upon Abyssinia are said to do in their conflicts with the inhabitants of that country. The Abyssinians are known to observe a strict fast of forty days at a certain period of the year, and it is the cruel custom of their enemies to wait until they are weakened by this long abstinence, and then to rush upon them and gain an easy victory.

Thus I say it is with the devil: a forty days' fast from the Blessed Sacrament is a rich conquest for him. It is his greatest delight to keep men away from the altar. Every excuse for staying away from Holy Communion is legitimate in his eyes; every doctrine which teaches that it is useless or hurtful to frequent the Holy Eucharist is stamped with his approval; every taunt with which a tepid Catholic upbraids his more fervent brother for nourishing his soul often with the Bread of Life is music in his ears. And he is in the right, for let men but once be persuaded to deprive themselves of the strengthening Body of Jesus Christ, and the work of Satan is no longer difficult. When the soul is weak in grace, by reason of long abstinence from the Flesh of Jesus Christ, then the evil one comes down upon it with his strong temptations and almost without resistance makes it his slave.

Once more, those who discountenance frequent Communion do the devil's work. They give Hell much pleasure and deprive Our Lord of great delight. It is on this account that Our Lord so often visits with severe punishments those who dissuade others from receiving Him. A woman who mocked St. Catherine of Siena for going so often to Holy Communion, on her return home, fell down to the ground and died instantly without being able to receive the last Sacraments. Another woman, who had committed the same offense, became crazy all at once. Nay, even where the fault was much slighter, God has shown His displeasure. St. Lutgaard was in the habit of receiving Holy Communion very often, but her superioress, disapproving, forbade her doing so in the future. The Saint obeyed, but at that very moment her superioress fell sick and had to suffer the most acute pains. At last, suspecting that her sickness was a punishment for having interdicted frequent Communion to Lutgaard, she withdrew the prohibition, when lo, her pains immediately left her, and she began to feel better!

Come then, O Christian, to the heavenly Banquet which your Divine Saviour has prepared for you. "All things are ready." Jesus Christ desires to unite Himself to you. "Behold," He says, "I stand at the door and knock. Open to Me, My Sister, My beloved, My dove, My undefiled; for My head is full of dew, and My locks of the drops of the night." He has waited for you through a long night of sin, and now that He has restored you to the state of grace by the Sacrament of Penance, He wishes to take up His abode in your heart and to enrich you with His graces. Let no temptation whatever keep you from so great a Good.

With St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi say, "I would rather die than omit a Communion permitted by obedience." As often as your director advises you, go forward to receive your Lord with confidence and simplicity of heart, and reply to those who blame you for communicating so often as St. Francis de Sales advises you to do: "If," says he, "they ask you why you communicate so often, tell them that two classes of persons should communicate frequently: the perfect to persevere in perfection, and the imperfect to attain perfection; the strong not to become weak, and the weak to grow strong; the sick to be cured, and the healthy to prevent sickness.

"And as to yourself, tell them that because you are imperfect, weak and infirm, you stand in need of Communion." (Introduction to the Devout Life, c. 21). Tell them you wish to become patient, and therefore you must receive your patient Saviour; that you wish to become meek, and therefore you must receive your meek Saviour; that you wish to love contempt, and therefore you must receive your despised Saviour; that you wish to love crosses, and therefore you must receive your suffering Saviour; that you wish to love poverty, and therefore you must receive your poor Saviour; that you wish to become strong against the temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil, and therefore you stand in need of your comforting and strengthening Saviour. Tell them He has said: "He that eateth My Flesh shall live by Me." I wish to live, and therefore I receive Jesus, my life, "that He may live in me and I in Him!"

He in Whose words you put your trust, will justify you; your soul will continually grow stronger in virtue; your heart will become more and more pure; your passions will become weaker; your faith more lively; your hope more firm; your charity more ardent; you will receive grace to live in the world as an heir of Heaven; and when at your last hour, the priest comes to administer the Holy Viaticum, you will be able to say with St. Teresa: "My Lord and my Bridegroom, so then the hour is come at last for which my heart has longed so much. Now is the time that we shall see each other face to face. Blessed be this hour! Thy will be done! O happy hour in which my exile has an end and my soul takes its flight to Thee for Whom it has longed so much!"

[NOTE: This chapter expresses the traditional and profoundly Catholic approach to frequent Holy Communion, with the constant understanding that the author is referring to worthy Communion, or Communion received in the State of Grace. This stands in absolute contrast to the currently prevalent abomination of Holy Communion being received by everyone at Mass, without regard to whether the recipient is in the State of Grace, whether he believes in the Real Presence (and all other Catholic doctrines), or whether he is even a Catholic. To receive Holy Communion under any of these conditions is a mortal sin of sacrilege. To receive Holy Communion worthily, a Catholic in the state of mortal sin must first confess all his mortal sins to a priest in Confession and be absolved of them, after which Our Lord will be pleased to come once again into his heart in Holy Communion. The following chapter treats the mortal sin of sacrilegious Communion in detail and with great power. -----Publisher, 1994.]