News & Resources

News & Resources

St. Manuel González García, co-patron of the National Eucharistic Revival

March 3, 2023

Last month we briefly explored the life of Blessed Carlo Acutis, a model for today’s teenagers and young adults and a co-patron of the National Eucharistic Revival in the United States. The other co-patron is St. Manuel González García who has been called the “Bishop of the Abandoned Tabernacle” from a book of the same name by Victoria Schneider.

As a young, newly ordained priest St. Manuel was assigned to minister at a parish in Palomares del Rio, Spain. Possessing a youthful zeal and passion for ministry, he envisioned a vibrant parish. Sadly, that was not what he discovered upon his arrival. Besides his flock not being invested in the parish, St. Manuel found the church in utter disrepair. There were even cobwebs on the tabernacle. St. Manuel wondered how he could fulfil any mission in Palomares del Rio, but as he knelt before the tabernacle, he experienced Jesus as someone “in desperate need of a friend.”

Reflecting on this experience, St. Manuel wrote, “My faith was looking at Jesus through the door of that tabernacle, so silent, so patient, so good, gazing right back at me…His gaze was telling me much and asking me for more. It was a gaze in which all the sadness of the Gospels was reflected; the sadness of ‘no room in the Inn”; the sadness of those words, “Do you also want to leave me?”; the sadness of poor Lazarus begging for crumbs from the rich man’s table; the sadness of the betrayal of Judas, the denial of Peter, of the soldier’s slap, of the spittle of the Praetorium, and the abandonment of all.”

It was while kneeling before the tabernacle that St. Manuel dedicated his priestly ministry to promoting love for Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. St. Manuel Gonzalez Garcia later founded the “Eucharist Reparation Union” and several religious orders including the Eucharistic Missionaries of Nazareth, the Disciples of St. John and the Children of Reparation. During this time of Eucharistic Renewal in the United States St. Manuel reminds us of the need to spend time in adoration of the Eucharistic Jesus, converse with Him as a Friend and immerse ourselves in His loving gaze. St. Manuel was canonized by Pope Francis on October 16, 2016.

We have entered more fully now into Lent, a time for increased focus on prayer, fasting and almsgiving. With so many parishes offering Lenten opportunities for adoration of the Blessed Sacrament through 40 Hours Devotions, perpetual adoration chapels and penitential services with Exposition and Benediction, we have ample ways of being drawn into intimacy with our Eucharistic Lord and developing a deeper friendship with Him.

If you haven’t done so already, I encourage you visit the National Eucharistic Revival website. The link is: Consider subscribing to the Heart of the Revival Newsletter. This weekly online publication offers a Lenten Prayer Companion in Spanish and in English, Revival Stories, a column entitled Our Bishops Speak, a meditation on the Eucharist in Art and a Revival Blog.

God bless you and your families as we strive to grow closer to our Eucharistic Lord during this Lenten Season.

Sister M. Marcella Louise Wallowicz, CSFN

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