Thursday, August 4, 2011

Saint John Vianney and Catherine of Siena on Prayer, Fish, and the Blessed Sacrament

  "Some men immerse themselves as deeply in prayer as fish in water, because they give themselves totally to God."

 So writes Saint John Mary Vianney in his Catechetical Instructions (Second Reading from today's Office of Readings)

This reminds me of something Saint Catherine of Siena wrote in her Dialogue; this is not it, but I found this one first...

"See, dearest daughter, in what an excellent state is the soul who receives, as she should, this Bread of Life, this Food of the Angels. "By receiving this Sacrament she dwells in Me and I in her, as the fish in the sea, and the sea in the fish -- thus do I dwell in the soul, and the soul in Me -- the Sea Pacific." (A Treatise of Prayer, no. 26)

This is it:

"since the soul seems, in such communion, sweetly to bind herself fast within herself and with God, and knows better His truth, inasmuch as the soul is then in God, and God in the soul, as the fish is in the sea, and the sea in the fish, she desired the arrival of the morning (for the morrow was a feast of Mary) in order to hear Mass." (A Treatise of Divine Providence, no. 2)

When we receive the Most Precious Body and Blood of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament, we are like fish in the sea.

The sea is the life of the fish;
God is the life of the soul.

The sea flows in and through the fish, as well as all around it;
God's life flows in and through us, as well as all around us.

The fish cannot exhaust the ocean;
we cannot exhaust God's grace and life in us..

Every fish is unique
and uniquely loved are we by God.

Saint John Vianney, Saint Catherine of Siena, pray for us, that we may learn to live fully immersed in God's grace!

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