The month of July has been traditionally dedicated to the Precious Blood of Jesus. St. Gaspar del Bufalo, the founder of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, was one of the significant figures promoting devotion to Our Lord’s blood. July 1, on the traditional calendar, begins this devotion with the Feast of the Precious Blood. When the calendar was revised in 1969, the Feast of Corpus Christi and the Precious Blood were joined into one Feast. The Votive Mass of the Precious Blood, however, remains as an option in the Novus Ordo Missae. The Litany of the Precious Blood is also one of the few approved litanies of the Church.
Rather than only calling to mind the link between the Lord’s body and blood, devotion to the precious blood reminded us of the seven sheddings of Our Lord’s blood for our redemption. The first being his circumcision, the second being the agony in the garden, the third being the scourging, the fourth the crowning with thorns, the fifth being the carrying of the cross, the sixth being the crucifixion, and the seventh being the piercing of the side. One of those shed-dings would have been sufficient to redeem the entirety of mankind. However, what was sufficient for redemption was not sufficient for the redeemer, and He thus went to more extraordinary lengths to demonstrate His immense love for us. His blood was the price of our redemption, and we ought to thus have devotion to it. We were not redeemed by perishable things such as gold and silver, as St. Paul reminds us, but with the precious blood of Christ. St. Clement, reminding the Church before the conclusion of the first century, said: “Let us fix our gaze on the Blood of Christ and realize how truly precious It is, seeing that it was poured out for our salvation and brought the grace of conversion to the whole world.”
Devotion to the Precious Blood reminds us that we are sinners, that we needed to be cleansed, and allows us to grow in a greater appreciation for the Sacrifice of the Cross. To understand why Christ went to the depths that He did is to understand our own sinfulness. It is only then that we can commence on the journey to become a saint. So make this your intention to grow in greater holiness during July through devotion to the Precious Blood!
Things will now slow down quite a bit until September here in the parish. However, I do remind everyone, we do have the parish picnic coming up at the end of the month on July 25. Sign-ups are available this weekend so that we can plan on the meat. I also ask that you sign up to bring a side to share. (You can sign-up here: https://forms.gle/wyzitB44fZzyeGdK8) This will be a good time for two major purposes. First, to celebrate together the ordinations that have taken place this year. Secondly, to have the opportunity to meet the many new parishioners who have joined us over these past two years. The parish picnic will again be at Kolping Grove and will begin at 3:00 p.m. Please join us!Have a blessed month ahead!