Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Offertory

Excerpt from the Book "The Holy Mass"

The Testimony of Catalina 
From a series of visions and messages 
from Jesus and Mary
A teaching on what happens during the Holy Mass 
and how to live it with our heart

     A moment later came the Offertory, and the Holy Virgin said: “Pray like this: (and I followed) Lord, I offer all that I am, all that I have, all that I can.  I put everything into Your Hands.  Build up Lord, with the little that I am.  Transform me, God Almighty, through the merits of Your Son.  I ask for my family, for my benefactors, for each member of our Apostolate, for all the people who persecute us, for those who commend themselves to my poor prayers… Teach me to lay my heart down on the ground before them, so that their walk may be less hard...  This is how the saints prayed; this is how I want all of you to pray.” And this is how Jesus asks us to pray, that we lay our hearts on the ground so that they [for whom we intercede] may not feel its harshness, but rather that we give them relief through the pain caused by their stepping on our hearts.    Years later, I read a prayer booklet by a Saint whom I love dearly, José María Escrivá de Balaguer, and in that booklet I found a prayer similar to that which the Virgin Mary taught me. Perhaps this Saint, to whom I entrust myself, pleased the Virgin Mary with those prayers.
     Suddenly, some characters that I had not seen before began to stand up. It was as if from the side of each person present in the Cathedral another person emerged, and soon the Cathedral became full of young beautiful beings. They were dressed in very white robes and started to move into the central isle, on their way to the Altar.
     Our Mother said: “Observe.  They are the Guardian Angels of each one of the persons who are here.  This is the moment in which your guardian angel carries your offerings and petitions before the Altar of the Lord.”
     At that point I was completely astonished because these beings had such beautiful faces, so radiant as one is unable to imagine.  Their countenance was very beautiful, they had almost feminine faces; however, the structure of their body, their hands, their height were masculine.  Their naked feet did not touch the floor, but rather they went as if gliding. That procession was very beautiful.
     Some of them were carrying something like a golden bowl with something [inside] that shone a great deal with a golden white light.  The Virgin Mary said:   “Observe.  They are the Guardian Angels of the people, who are offering this Holy Mass for many intentions, those who are conscious of the significance of this celebration, those who have something to offer to the Lord… 
     “Make your offering at this moment… Offer up your sorrows, your pains, your dreams, your sadness, your joys.  Offer your petitions.  Remember that the Mass has infinite value.  Therefore, be generous in your offering and in your asking.” 
     Behind the first Angels came others who had nothing in their hands; they were going empty handed.  The Virgin Mary said:  “Those are the angels of the people who, in spite of being here, never offer anything.  They have no interest in living every liturgical moment of the Mass, and their Angels have no offerings to carry before the Altar of the Lord.” 
     At the end of the procession came other Angels who were rather sad, with their hands together in prayer, but with their eyes downcast. “These are the Guardian Angels of the people who are here, yet they are not here. That is to say, they are the people who have seen themselves forced to come, who have come here out of obligation but without any desire to participate in the Holy Mass. Their Angels go forth in sadness because  they have nothing to carry to the Altar, except for their own prayers.
     “Do not sadden your Guardian Angels… Ask for much.  Ask for the conversion of sinners, for peace in the world, for your relatives, your neighbors, for those who commend themselves to your prayers.  Ask for much, not only for yourselves, but also for all the others. 
     “Remember that the offering which most pleases the Lord, is when you offer yourselves as a holocaust so that Jesus, upon His descent may transform you by His own merits.  What do you have to offer the Father by yourselves? Nothingness and sin, but the offering of yourselves united to the merits of Jesus, is pleasing to the Father.”
     That spectacle, that procession was so beautiful, that it would be difficult to compare it to another.  All those celestial creatures were bowing before the Altar, some leaving their offering on the floor, others prostrating themselves on their knees, their foreheads almost touching the ground.  And upon reaching the Altar, they would disappear from my sight.


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