So, the holy sacrament was returned and all should be well, at least as far as the UCF incident goes. However, it is likely that the UCF Catholic Campus Ministry missed out on a tremendous opportunity for glory (in the highest). Cook, in his incident report (still searching for the link), wrote “I attempted to affiliate myself with the Catholic Campus Ministry. In the process of doing so, I was forced to consume a food item.” Other than potential allergic reactions, there was the distinct possibility of him puking the body of Christ all over the place. Recall, if you will, a little incident that happened in Gerona, Spain in 1297. During a mass, the priest, upon placing the sacrament in his mouth,
“…was impeded and demonstrated bewilderment. A nun that followed the rite from above the altar saw the priest remove something from his mouth, and afterwards wrapped it in the corporal and placed it on the corner of the altar. After the Mass, the nun went immediately to the altar to verify what the priest had hidden in the white cloth and with great amazement discovered that it contained a small piece of Flesh, dripping with Blood. Questioned, the priest confessed to doubting the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. And just as he put the Holy Host in his mouth, the size increased to such a volume and consistency that he was not able to swallow the Sacred Species. (ref-pdf warn)”Cook took the holy host back to his chair. The priest in Gerona spit the actual flesh and blood of Christ into a napkin and balled it up like common trash. In one case it’s desecration while in the other it’s a miracle.
Cook was not the first to take the holy host back home with him. I know you’re thinking what I’m thinking: Augsburg, Germany – 1194. The smell of schnitzel in the air, feces in the street. A woman, who we’ll call Gretchen, received Communion but, without being noticed, put the Host in a handkerchief, took it home, and placed it in a container of wax inside a cupboard. There really weren’t many places back then that you could go to to worship the Eucharist and it way easier to do it if you have your very own Eucharist…you get the picture.
Five years passed and on the 11th of May 1199, the woman, tormented by remorse, confessed to the superior of the convent of the Heilig Kreuz, Father Berthold, who had her bring the Host back. The priest opened up the wax covering that enclosed the Host and saw that the Holy Eucharist had been transformed into bleeding Flesh. (ref - pdf warn)The Vatican calls it a Eucharistic Miracle. Like I said, the Catholic
The Eucharistic Miracles Around The World can be found here. They make for fascinating reading. Some of them will weird you out, like when Christ reached down from his cross and took up the chalice from a hesitant priest. I’ll have to read that to some scouts over the campfire. Guaranteed to keep them awake.