“It was like a reawakening”

Gregory Dolezal April 12, 2023
St. Monica Mishawaka, IN

As a cradle Catholic, I was the recipient of 12 years of Catholic school training. I don't remember anyone ever being emphatic in teaching the true presence of Our Lord. As I grew older, I knew, but didn't feel, that presence. I don't remember what started opening my mind to really focus on what was happening during the Mass, but it was like reawakening. In time, I became aware of stories about Eucharistic miracles. I didn't feel a need to investigate them to believe, but I was curious about what was happening and what the Church was doing with it. I am still fascinated by the science and mystery. 

By chance, a friend invited my wife and me to travel to Italy with them. Among the holy sites we visited, I was most awed by going to Mass in the chapel in the church in Lanciano where the Body and Blood of our Lord in the monstrance was displayed for adoration. I was humbled to be in His presence. I had to take a picture, which now hangs on my wall as a continuous reminder of God's love for us. On the night before we came home, we exchanged small gifts with the person whose name we picked out of a bowl. When my wife's gift was given, she received two identical medallions, which included a picture of the monstrance from Lanciano and the words RELIQUIA MIRACULO EUCHARISTICO, representing the relics of a Eucharistic miracle at Lanciano in the eighth century.

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