BXVI On Eucharistic Adoration

It is worth recalling in this regard, the various meanings which the word “adoration” has in Greek and in Latin. The Greek word proskýnesis indicates the gesture of submission, the acknowledgment of God as our true measure, the norm of which we accept to follow. The Latin word ad-oratio, however, denotes the physical contact, the kiss, the embrace, which is implicit in the idea of love [NLM note: the root here is “os”, mouth; the ancient oriental gesture of greeting a ruler, translated into Latin as “adoratio”, involved touching the right hand to the mouth]. The aspect of submission foresees a relationship of union, because he to whom we submit is Love. Indeed, in the Eucharist adoration must become union: union with the living Lord and then with his Mystical Body. As I told the young people on the plain of Marienfeld, in Cologne, during the Holy Mass on the occasion of the XX World Youth Day, on August 2005: ” God no longer simply stands before us as the One who is totally Other. He is within us, and we are in him. His dynamic enters into us and then seeks to spread outwards to others until it fills the world, so that his love can truly become the dominant measure of the world.”(Insegnamenti, vol. I, 2005, pp. 457 f.). In this perspective, I reminded the young people that in the Eucharist one lives the “first fundamental transformation of violence into love, of death into life; this brings other transformations in its wake. Bread and wine become his Body and Blood. But the transformation must not stop there; on the contrary, the process of transformation must hee fully begin. The Body and Blood of Christ are given to us so that we ourselves will be transformed in our turn.”(ibid., p. 457).

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