by St. Alphonsus Liguori
O most lovely, most sweet, and dearest Jesus! life, hope, treasure, and only love of my soul! Oh, how much has it not cost Thee to remain with us in this sacrament. It was necessary for Thee to die in order to remain afterwards upon our altars; and how many injuries hast Thou not been made to suffer, in consequence of this presence among us! But Thy love, and Thy desire to be loved by us, have surmounted all. Come then, Lord, come and occupy my heart, and afterwards close the gate to it for ever, so that no creature may ever enter again to take away a part of this love which belongs entirely to Thee, and which I am unwilling to give to any other. Do Thou alone, my dear Redeemer, reign over me! Do Thou alone possess me entirely, and if at any time I should not obey Thee perfectly, punish me severely, that for the future I may be more careful to please Thee, according to Thy desire. Let me no more desire nor seek for any other pleasure than to please Thee, to visit Thee often at Thine altar, to converse with Thee, and to receive Thee in holy Communion. Let them look for other goods who will! For me, I love only, I desire only the treasure of Thy love. The only favor I ask at the foot of this altar is that I may forget myself altogether, to remember only Thy goodness. Blessed seraphs, I do not envy you your glory! but by the love which you bear to your God and mine, oh, teach me what I must do to love Him and please Him like you!
O my Lord and King, hidden in this sacrament, since Thou dost invite me to converse with Thee, I will open my heart with confidence, and speak. O my Jesus, ardent lover of souls, I know too well the injustice and ingratitude of men towards Thee. Thou lovest them, and they do not love Thee; Thou dost confer benefits on them, and they return Thee insults; Thou wouldst have them hear Thy voice, and they will not listen; Thou dost offer them graces, and they refuse them. Ah! my Jesus, I, too, was once among the number of these ungrateful souls. O my God, it is only too true. But I desire to amend, and I wish to compensate for the injuries I have done Thee, by doing all I can to please Thee for the remainder of my life. Tell me, O Lord, what Thou dost require of me. I will do it without the least reserve. Make known to me Thy will by the way of holy obedience, and I hope to accomplish it. My God, I firmly promise never to leave undone any act wich I know to be agreeable to Thee, although the performance of it should cost me the loss of all things - of relations, friends, character, health, and even life itself. Let me lose all, if only I may do Thy will! Happy loss, when all is sacrificed to content Thy heart. O God of my soul! I love Thee, O Sovereign Good, above all goods worthy of my love, and in loving Thee I unite my feeble heart with the hearts of all the seraphim. I unite it with the heart of Mary and with the heart of Jesus. I love Thee with my whole soul; I wish to love Thee alone, now and for ever.