Most Precious Blood Church
Chapel of the Blessed Sacrament
1245 Fourth Avenue,
Down in adoration falling,
This great sacrament we hail.
Over ancient forms of worship
Newer rites of grace prevail.
Faith will tell us Christ is present
When our human senses fail.
-- from the Pange Lingua Gloriosi,
by St. Thomas Aquinas
An amazing idea: God, seeking to rescue man from himself, took the form of man. A still more amazing idea: Before he died, he instituted a ritual whereby bread and wine actually become His body and blood, physical nourishment for the soul. It's more than some sort of holy cannibalism, it's eating God. Catholics believe that when a priest repeats Christ's words, "This is my body, which shall be given up for you," and elevates the wafer, they are looking at God Himself. That's why churches became so grandiose -- they were literally houses for God. But the grandiosity was for our benefit, a reminder of the glory of the creator. God humbled Himself to become man, and does not disdain a humble house. What He wants is reverence and love, and reunion with his creatures. To that end, the blessed sacrament is displayed 24 hours a day in the tiny chapel at Most Precious Blood.