Friday, October 16, 2015

One must have reverence even in producing the Eucharistic Bread

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“To the matter of the Sacrifice, already before its oblation, are due the most scrupulous care and the greatest reverence, as is evident from their more remote preparation.  Every precaution must be taken to procure genuine and freshly made hosts, to procure genuine pure wine for the Sacrifice of the Altar.  Let us recall the epoch of the Middle Age, so full of faith. Then it was that devout princes and princesses esteemed it high honor to be allowed to prepare and to provide the bread and wine for the Holy Sacrifice.  

In convents the preparation of the sacrificial bread was even accompanied with religious solemnity and with a kind of divine service. Thus was it prepared in the world-renowned Benedictine Abbey of Cluny.  At prescribed hours the monks performed manual labor; but that they might also be sanctified in the midst of their occupations, they worked amid the singing of Psalms. But of all manual labor especial care was bestowed upon the preparation of the bread for the Sacrifice. It was amidst the singing of Psalms that the seed destined for it was confided to the earth and the ripe grain gathered; amid the praises of divine power and love, grain after grain was selected carefully washed and carried in a special sact to the mill by one of the most exemplary monks.

Reverence in producing the altar bread
There he first washed the two mill-stones, covered them from top to bottom with cloths, robed himself in white, and then, with veiled face so that his eyes alone were uncovered, he began to grind the wheat. With similar care the sieve was then washed and the flour sifted. To prepare the bread from the flour was the duty of the highest official of the monastic church; two monks and a recently admitted brother, with no less care shared the holy labor with him. Being well washed and clothed in white garments, they baked the hosts in a blessed vessel. It is very proper that persons consecrated to God prepare with all devoted- ness and reverence the bread for the Holy Sacrifice, regarding this preparation as a work of love and of conscience.”

As a further note, the Transalpine Redemptorists have a similar practice when they milk their cow’s they sing hymns that glorify God and honor our Lady as seen in the documentary from a few years ago.(Go to the 8:40 mark)

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