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Friday, 01 July 2022 09:24

Solemnity of the Precious Blood of Jesus

Greetings to all ASC and groups that in the Church share in the spirituality of the Blood of Jesus....
United in prayer, let us invoke the saving power of the Blood of Jesus, that may impel us to make concrete gestures of reconciliation and solidarity, in order to collaborate with Christ in the transformation of the world.
( From the circular letter of Sr. Nadia Coppa, ASC General Superior)

Historical Note

This feast is linked to a relic kept in the church of San Nicola in Carcere in Rome that, according to tradition, was a flap of the cloak of the Centurion who pierced the Crucified Jesus with a spear to verify his death. That flap would have been cut out because it was bathed in the "blood and water " (Jn. 19:34) from the side of Jesus. The Old Testament dwells several times on the subject of blood, reiterating its preciousness the Blood of Christ is the greatest and most perfect revelation of the Father's Love... From a historical point of view, it can be said that devotion to the Precious Blood was already alive in ancient times. After a long period during which this devotion was no longer practiced, the Blood of Christ began once again to be worshipped in the first half of the nineteenth century. The initiator, was a pious priest, later bishop, Don Francesco Albertini, the promoter of a Confraternity entitled precisely to the Precious Blood, in which people were formed who continued and spread its devotion.  Among the promoters of this devotion shine the names of St. Gaspar del Bufalo, founder of the Missionaries of the Precious Blood, and St. Maria De Mattias, who founded the Congregation of the Sisters Adorers of the Blood of Christ.

Throughout Italy and also around the world, several women's institutes dedicated to the Blood of Christ arose, such as the Sisters of the Precious Blood, founded in Monza by Mother Maria Matilde Bucchi, the Daughters of Charity of the Precious Blood, founded in Pagani (SA) by Fr. Tommaso Fusco. In 1822, St. Gaspar obtained from the Holy See the "Nulla osta" for the celebration of the Feast of the Precious Blood on the first Sunday in July, but only within the congregation of St. Gaspar.

Pius IX fixed it for July 1, and Pius XI raised it to a solemnity in April 1934, in commemoration of the 19th centenary of the Redemption.

Paul VI then combined this feast with that of Corpus Christi, creating, however, discontent among devotees and religious institutes dedicated to the Blood of Christ. He then granted the right to celebrate the feast on July 1, with a liturgy of solemnity.