“The best birthday present I’ve ever received.”

When I entered her apartment, it was abundantly clear that she was Catholic.  The large portrait of St. John Paul II was the first giveaway.POPE-JOHN-PAUL-II

She called our church the other day to ask if someone would be willing to bring Holy Communion to her. She was home-bound, living in a local assisted living complex. She recently moved here to be closer to her children.

I sat down to talk and her first words were, “I haven’t had Communion in three years.”

This took me aback.  How can this happen?  She told me that she had called churches in her previous town, but no one ever came by.  I wondered what it must feel like to go without receiving the Blessed Sacrament for so long.  I couldn’t imagine it.

I spent about an hour with her listening to her story.  She was a delightful woman with a great love for The Lord.  She prayed her rosary daily, watched Mass on television, and spoke fondly of her days as a student in her local parish school.

As I was preparing to leave, she grabbed my hand and said, “Today is my birthday and you came to see me.  Bringing Holy Communion to me was the best birthday present I’ve ever received.”

I didn’t know what to say.  It was humbling.

Would that we all approach the altar with that kind of gratitude! Indeed, every day that we approach the table of the Lord is the greatest day – and it was good to be reminded of that.

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