A couple of months before his death Bishop Fulton J. Sheen was interviewed on U.S. National Television. One of the questions was this:

 “Bishop Sheen, you have inspired millions of people all over the world.  Who inspired  you?  Was it a Pope?”

praying 2 Bishop Sheen responded that it was not a Pope, a cardinal, another bishop, or even a priest or a nun. It was a little Chinese girl of about eleven years of age. He explained that when the Communists took over China,  they imprisoned a priest in his own rectory.  After they locked him up, the priest was horrified to look out of a small opening and  see the Communists ransackle the Church, where they went into the sanctuary and broke into the tabernacle. In an act of hateful desecration, they took the ciborium and threw it on the floor with all of the Sacred Hosts spilling out. The priest knew exactly how many Hosts were in the ciborium:  thirty-three.

 When the Communists left, they either did not notice, or didn’t pay any attention to a small girl praying in the back of the Church who saw everything that had happened.  That night the little girl came back. Slipping past the guard, she went inside the Church. There she made a holy hour of prayer, an act of love to make up for the act of hatred.

 After her holy hour she went into the sanctuary, knelt down, bent over and with her tongue received Jesus in Holy Communion, (since it was not permissible for laymen to touch the Sacred Host with their hands.)

 praying 1The little girl continued to come back each night to make her holy  hour and receive Jesus in Holy Communion on her tongue. On the final night, after she had consumed the last and thirty-third host, she accidentally made a noise and woke the guard who was sleeping. He ran after her,  caught her, and beat her to death with the butt of his rifle. This act of heroic martyrdom was witnessed by the priest as he watched grief-stricken from his prison.

 When Bishop Sheen later met with this priest and heard the story he was so inspired that he promised God he would make a holy hour of prayer before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament everyday of his life.  If this frail, little child could give testimony and witness to the world concerning the real and wonderful Presence of her Saviour in the Blessed Sacrament, then the Bishop was absolutely bound by all that was right and true, to do the same. His sole desire from then on was to bring the world to the burning Heart of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

 The little girl showed the Bishop what true courage and zeal really is; how faith could overcome all fear, how true love for Jesus in the Eucharist must transcend life itself. What is hidden in the Sacred Host is the glory of His love. The sun in the sky is symbolic of the Son of God in the Blessed Sacrament. This is why most monstrances are in the form of a sunburst. As the sun is the natural source of all energy, the Blessed Sacrament is  the supernatural source of all grace and love. The Blessed Sacrament is JESUS, the Light of the world.

in adoration

1 Response to ““Couldst thou not watch one hour?” (Mark 14:37)”


  1. 1 Mirek February 19, 2010 at 17:39

    Thank you for this text about the story of One sacred hour of F. Sheen I didn t know abot source of it. In wich book of Sheen is written abot it and if You have number a side I need to write abot it some priest in Poland. I am olso Polish Priest


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