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 | By Bishop Jacques Fabre-Jeune

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ – July 2024

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

Each July, we celebrate in a special way the gift of Christ’s most precious blood. I would like us to reflect on the purifying nature of this sacrament.

As we recall from the Gospel of John, “they came to Jesus and saw that he was already dead, they did not break his legs, but one soldier thrust his lance into his side, and immediately blood and water flowed out” (19:33-34). Christ shed his blood to purge humanity of the reign of sin in the world — so much so that even the soldier who pierced him, Longinus, grew to recognize him as the Son of God.

We witness this singular, perfect moment of our redemption every time we attend Mass. It cleanses our hearts and souls so that we may be purified in the sight of God. The precious blood of Christ shields us from spiritual death as the prefigured blood of the lamb preserved the Israelites in Egypt from the angel of death.

St. Gasparo del Bufalo, founder of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood said, “We must let it be known how the blood of Christ cleanses the souls and sanctifies them, particularly by means of the sacraments.”

And so we are strengthened by the sacrifice of Jesus when we receive the blood of the Lamb, and we are to imitate him in enduring suffering and humility. I urge you to frequent the sacraments of the Eucharist and reconciliation to renew your resolve to forgive and love others.

In Christ’s love,

Most Rev. Jacques Fabre-Jeune, CS
Bishop of Charleston