The Sacrament of God’s Presence
Meditations on the Eucharist 4
  • St. Genevieve’s
  • Heaven over the Altar
  • Seed and Soil
  • An Encounter
  • The Price of His Blood
  • Just for You
  • Amazement Regained
  • Meeting God
  • Meeting God in the Earthly Temple
  • The Right Road
  • Prayer with Action
  • Faith’s Touch
  • Real Sense and Aim
  • Sacrifice-Communion-Presence
  • Jesus-the Eucharist
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Listen to the first chapter of the book read by Halina Łabonarska

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Foreword by Archbishop Alfons Nossol
Bishop of Opole

We could summarise this book by saying it is a deep meditation on the love of God as revealed in the Person of Jesus Christ. It is a meditation on the mystery of His presence in the Blessed Sacrament. This Most Holy Presence can only be discovered and loved by us through coming into a person to person relationship. Only such a relationship leads to the real meeting between God and ourselves. Yet more than this, in the discovery of this relationship, we are introduced into the mystery of another human person in our lives.

The Sacrament of God’s Presence is in many respects an unusual book. It urges us to deepen and radically revive our union with This Love which longs to surrender life for us and remain with us in the mystery of the Eucharist. There is no greater love. The author’s meditations on this unusual mystery of our faith are astonishing in depth, freshness and simplicity. This book cannot be simply ‘read’. It needs to be meditated upon and read again and again gradually to discover its inner richness. It speaks of the Eucharist in a completely new and unconventional way; it speaks with the language of living faith and authentic, interior experience. Its content directs the reader in an unusually attractive manner, towards authentic interior life. This is a life of faith, hope and love, a life that may be born, grow and mature, drawing life-giving power from the Eucharist, the Source of all graces.

Pope Paul VI wrote that “the Eucharist is the presence which invites us” [Homily on June 13, 1974]. It invites us to special Eucharistic relationship. If during Mass we try to experience the presence of the redemptive event, we shall see how important it is to understand the Eucharist as a mysterious encounter.

There are different human encounters. Blessed John Paul II spoke of “night encounters like the one with Nicodemus, chance encounters like the one with the Samaritan woman, provoked encounters like the one with the woman caught in an act of adultery, imploring encounters like the one with the blind man at the gate of Jericho, encounters caused by curiosity like the one with Zacchaeus, encounters distinguishing themselves with great nearness like encounters with the Apostles called to follow Christ, unexpected encounters like the one with St. Paul on the road to Damascus (…). Yet the encounter of the greatest nearness, the one that transforms us profoundly and upon which all others depend, is the encounter at the Table of the Eucharistic Mystery (…), Here Christ personally receives us burdened with trouble and strengthens us with the warmth of His understanding and His love” [John Paul II, Homily on July 9, 1980.].

Jesus Christ truly present under the species of bread and wine is God, unusually close to us and simultaneously our only Sense and Aim.

However, as the author makes us aware, there are still many set patterns of thinking, supports and reliances which need to fall away; many things taken for granted need to collapse so that the Only Sense revives our everyday lives to give birth within us the “prayer with action”, “the prayer of touch” for every eventuality. In Father Dajczer’s meditations, we can find a particular encouragement prompting us directly towards such prayer. This “prayer with action here and now” is born in discovering the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist, coming into relationship as we meet Him. When we have found this union, it gives birth to an inner unending desire from Him that this endures for ever.

The Sacrament of God’s Presence continues ideas found in the author’s three previous books in the series of Meditations on the Eucharist: The Mystery of Faith, Amazing Nearness and Increase Our Faith. In Poland, they sold out very quickly.

To contemporary men and women, often living in an atmosphere of unbelief and secularism, rarely concerned with the mystery of personal existence, to those who do not discern God on the altar any more since ‘the world’ and ‘I’ have obscured God, our author directs Eucharistic meditations. He says we will not convert nor choose God to the end if we do not believe that God loves us exclusively and that He reveals this love to us everyday from the Eucharistic altar.

Father Professor Tadeusz’s meditations on the Eucharist reveal his ecclesiastical thinking and love of the Church. He longs for all of us to share this love. Living this interior attitude, the author writes for the whole Catholic Church, craving that it lives ever increasingly with the greatest Treasure it possesses on this earth, i.e. the Treasure of Love, the love which desires this Presence. It does not want to be fully understood but it craves exclusively to bond with us.

Alfons Nossol
Bishop of Opole

St. Genevieve’s

The wind lashes; there’s drizzling rain; raindrops are running down my neck; it is very late. I see the church walls. Now I see the words ‘Église Sainte Genevieve’, St Genevieve’s Church. I open the door a little. Within, there’s a dim light at the altar. I see nobody. I steal almost noiselessly along the side aisle towards the front and stop near the altar, hidden behind a pillar.

Now I see somebody leaving the sacristy. He’s wearing a clerical collar. As he passes the tabernacle, he genuflects. My attention is closely focused on this unusual priest as he genuflects very slowly and with special solemnity. I’m really moved. He’s not just kneeling before the tabernacle. He’s kneeling before Someone. On the altar he places a cross and a missal stand, he lights the candles. This is all quite normal; yet it’s so very different. His movements are slow, his face deeply attentive. He returns to the sacristy; again I notice this different genuflection. I can’t move my eyes away from him. He’s in touch with a different reality.

Suddenly it’s so clear. His faith is deep; he deeply believes in God’s presence in the tabernacle. He kneels in deep adoration. Yet there’s more; as he genuflects, he seems deeply to be in contact with Someone. He simply sees God.

Psychology tells us we mostly communicate without words. I was really moved by the way he said Mass. It was the expression on his face, his eyes, gestures, everything about him. Everything spoke of prayer and worship of God’s infinite majesty.

From the moment he uttered the words of Consecration, his face and voice were quite astonishing. At the Elevation, he raised the Host very slowly. His gestures were so prayerful. Scripture’s words passed through my mind: “Every day I call to You, Lord, to You I lift up my hands”. Before God he was helplessly adoring, utterly confident.

I just had to talk to him. After Mass he agreed that we could have a word or two. We went to his flat which was quite simple. I’ll not forget this first meeting.