A Guide for Prayer After Communion
One cannot overstate the importance of prayer after Holy Communion. Not only do we have a duty to give thanks to God for the ultimate gift of his Passion and his presence in the sacrament, we also have the opportunity to receive the greatest graces, when Christ resides physically in us, as he did in his holy mother. However, I’ve always found that there are numerous distractions, and it is very easy to let this time slip by without making use of it.
I came across a guide to prayer after communion recently, and it has been a big help to me, so I thought I’d share it!
The guide comes from a book called the Imitation of Mary, and is presented in the form of a dialogue between an ordinary Christian and the Blessed Virgin. About this book, in the years after the publishing of the Imitation of Christ (quite possibly the best spiritual work in the history of the Church (besides the Bible)), there were many works which followed its style, and a few were about Mary, but none were very good, until the French Jesuit Alexander de Rouville published his book in 1768 (almost 200 years later).
So, here it is. Enjoy, and make your next communion more fruitful!
My child, when you have received Jesus at the holy table and He now rests within your heart, make your own the sentiments that were mine as I carried Him in my womb.
Mary, no human mind can conceive, no tongue express the sentiments and emotions of your heart at that time. God alone knows them!
Faith, humility, zeal, gratitude, love, and all the other virtues filled every moment of the nine months during which the Word of God dwelled in your holy womb.
My Child, if you knew the value of the gift Jesus gives you in giving Himself to you in Communion and the sentiments toward you which fill His soul, would you lack the proper sentiments toward Him?
Here the creature is visited by the Creator; a beggar by the King of glory; an afflicted soul by the heavenly consoler; a man who is all sin by Him Who is holiness itself.
Humble yourself profoundly before Him; praise His goodness which is infinitely greater than anything you can imagine.
Loathe your own past ingratitude; ask His help for the future; promise Him undying fidelity.
Abandon yourself to the impulses of purest joy. Ask the angels and saints to offer Jesus thanks on your behalf, thanks that are adequate, if that be possible, to the splendid gift He gives you.
Desire that a God so good and lovable be loved and glorified on earth as He is in heaven.
Open your heart to His blazing love and desire to be consumed by it.
In gratitude for His blessing and to make up for your own weakness, offer Him all the sentiments which have filled holy souls as they received Him with devoted love in this sacrament.
Offer Him especially the sentiments with which He deigned to fill my soul when in His incarnation He united himself so closely to me.
Think of the power of which He offers you so marvelous an example in the Eucharist; think especially of His humility and ask Him for the grace to imitate it.
In this sacrament His humanity as well as His Divinity is hidden. Nothing of Jesus is visible, except to the eyes of your faith.
Ask Him that you may live a life that is hidden and despised; that you may flee from outward show and honors; that you may do all you do without any desire to be seen and esteemed.
In this sacrament Jesus is treated with contempt by many, and with indifference by many others who are little concerned with Him, much with the world, and entirely with themselves. Ask for the grace to bear patiently with insults and opposition.
Such, my child, are the thoughts that ought to fill you at Communion time and throughout any day on which you have been privileged to receive Jesus.