Thoughts for the Week - Fr R Taouk
11th June 2017
Pope St. Pius X and the Importance of the Blessed
When Pius X ascended to the Papacy in the summer of
1903, he was already known to be devoted to the
Eucharist. He was devoted to the Eucharist from his
youth, and gave his priesthood over to serving It. As he
matured, the ardour of his devotion only increased,
especially the more he perceived It to be threatened or
denigrated by others.
His Papal program as Pius X turned specific attention to
the Eucharist for he grasped well that our faith has its
focal point in Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Blessed
Sacrament. Within the first five years, he published the
decree concerning Frequent and Daily Communion. Shortly
after that, he lowered the age for First Communion to
the age of seven, more or less. He clearly recalled to
the Church the instruction by the Council of Trent: "At
each Mass, the faithful who are present should
communicate, not only in spiritual desire, but also by
the sacramental participation of the Eucharist that
thereby a more abundant fruit might be derived to them
from this most holy sacrifice".
Pius X addressed the age of First Communion in the
Quam Singulari. He recalled first the joy
Our Lord found in the company of children and that it
had been the custom in the early Church to give
Communion to infants and that "the Eucharist is an
antidote whereby we may be freed from daily faults and
be preserved from mortal sins".
Every person of our times must be grateful to him for
his proclamations on the Eucharist. The cumulative
effects of the Eucharistic decrees were remarked by
priests and chaplains worldwide in the years to follow.
A few years later Pope Pius XII had described these
decrees as "inspired by God Himself to bring the
faithful back to the ecclesiastic practice and fervour
of the early Church".
Pius X reminded us that to approach the altar worthily
does not depend on knowledge, but on having the proper
intention and love (as well as to be in a state of
grace). The young mind and heart are unfettered and
undivided in interest, but what may be lacked in
understanding is offset by ardour and purity of
intention, and the effects of the Eucharist upon the
soul are manifold, especially for innocent souls.
Holy Communion provides food for our interior life; It
unites the soul to Christ; It floods the soul with
spiritual sweetness and delight; It lessens
concupiscence; It is the antidote to temptations and
sin, to the attacks of the Devil, to bad companionship
and objectionable recreation, to impure and sinful
conversations, to bad literature and indecent movies,
and to sinful desires and inclinations. The Eucharist
delivers the soul from daily venial sins and strengthens
it on path to virtue so it may more easily go to God.