At the moment when the Host is raised, the altar boy rings the bells. This reminds us of that moment when the horn was sounded in the Temple to signal the start of the slaying of the Paschal lambs. On the mystical Calvary, the priest now holds in his hands our God, our Creator, our Redeemer, our Eucharistic and spotless Lamb.
“How are thy hands constituted, O priest of the Lord?”, asks Gihr. He continues, “..are they…holy and venerable by the abundance of virtuous actions, by the odor of a devout life, and by exemplary conduct?”
Oh, how we need holy priests after the Heart of Jesus!
Anne C. Emmerich presents to us this scenario of 2,000 years ago when Jesus was raised on the cross: “…words of love and compassion resounded through the air at the same moment; and need we say that these words, these sounds, were emitted by the most saintly of human beings—Mary—John—the holy women, and all who were pure of heart? They bowed down and adored the ‘Word made flesh,’ nailed to the cross; they stretched forth their hands as if desirous of giving assistance to the Holy of Holies, whom they beheld nailed to a cross and in the power of his furious enemies. But when the solemn sound of the fall of the cross into the hole prepared for it in the rock was heard, a dead silence ensued, every heart was filled with an undefinable feeling of awe—a feeling never before experienced, and for which no one could account, even to himself; all the inmates of hell shook with terror, and vented their rage by endeavouring to stimulate the enemies of Jesus to still greater fury and brutality; the souls in Limbo were filled with joy and hope, for the sound was to them a harbinger of happiness, the prelude to the appearance of their Deliverer. Thus was the blessed cross of our Lord planted for the first time on the earth; and well might it be compared to the tree of life in Paradise, for the wounds of Jesus were as sacred fountains, from which flowed four rivers destined both to purify the world from the curse of sin, and to give it fertility, so as to produce fruit unto salvation.”
Prayer: “Lord Jesus Christ, who wouldst be raised on the Cross, and in that manner exalted from the earth for my sake; raise me, I beseech Thee, from all earthly affections, that my soul may always, as far as possible in this land of exile, live in heaven.“ Amen.