Thy glory so hidden, and Thy love so despised

Caravaggio, Adorazione dei pastori.jpg
Among the mectildian-benedictine practices that our monastery has come to cherish is that of the Amende honorable (Act of Honourable Amendment): a prayer of adoration and reparation pronounced aloud before the Most Holy Sacrament. Here is the prayer that I offered today following Vespers.
Lord Jesus Christ,
God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God,
begotten of the Father before the daystar,
and consubstantial with Him,
born in the fulness of time of the Immaculate Virgin Mary,
by the power of the Holy Spirit,
I adore Thee,
who art truly present here,
and, out of my own poverty and weakness,
I desire to make reparation
for those who do not adore Thee in this wondrous Sacrament,
and for those who deny the mystery of Thy real presence.
I would make reparation as well
for those who approach Thee without reverence,
for those who touch, and handle,
and receive Thy adorable Body
with coldness, with indifference,
and with little awareness of the immensity of Thy charity
burning in this Most Holy Sacrament.
Thou art here upon the altar
just as Thou wert in the cave of Bethlehem,
where, wrapped in swaddling bands,
Thou wast laid in the manger as upon an altar,
the innocent Lamb made ready for the sacrifice,
the Living Bread come down from heaven,
and set forth upon the altars of Thy Church
for the nourishment of those
whom Thou hast created to partake of Thy Flesh and Blood
and, in so doing, to become one with Thee.
Here, though Thy glory be veiled, yet is it visible,
for one cannot gaze upon the Sacred Host
without reflecting, as in a mirror,
something of the radiance of Thy glory
hidden beneath Its humble appearance.
I unite my adoration first to that of the Virgin Mother and of Saint Joseph,
desiring, in some way, to adore Thee with them
and to abide in their company.
I adore Thee in communion with the Angelic Choirs
who filled the skies of Bethlehem on that most holy night,
and I adore Thee together with the lowly shepherds
who, crossing over to Bethlehem, found there
that everything was just as the Angel told them.
Receive my adoration here,
and in every church become the true House of Bread,
by reason of Thine adorable presence,
thus prolonging the mystery of Bethlehem
through space and through time,
from the rising of the sun to its setting.
Bowing low before Thee,
I adore and I submit to this mystery of Thy omnipotence become so fragile,
of Thy glory so hidden,
and of Thy love so despised.
Let all that is in me surrender in faith to what I see before my eyes,
and to what I do not see,
for Thou art here,
who livest and reignest with the Father,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, forever and ever. Amen.

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