Not only have angels functioned as ministers of the Holy Eucharist, but in at least one incident an angel was assisted by a saint. This occurred to St. Stanislaus Kostka (d. 1568) during the time he was preparing for his admission into the Society of Jesus.

A violent and dangerous sickness overtook Stanislaus while he was on a journey, and he was forced to stay for a time in the home of a Lutheran couple, who would not permit the Eucharist to be brought into their house. Since the physician had abandoned all hope for his recovery, St. Stanislaus was in extreme affliction, not from fear of death, but because he was being denied the reception of the Sacraments. He appealed to St. Barbara, whose confraternity he had joined, as had many of the students of the Jesuit college. St. Barbara was known as the patroness who would insure the reception of the Sacrament of Penance and Holy Communion at the hour of death. For this reason she is depicted in art carrying a chalice and a Host, as well as the palm of martyrdom.

After Stanislaus had prayed to St. Barbara, the saint appeared to him, accompanied by an angel. In answer to his prayers St. Barbara brought him the Holy Eucharist. After communicating, St. Stanislaus slowly recovered his health. Nevertheless, he died at an early age, sometime later, as the result of another ailment.

It is said of St. Stanislaus that he communicated as often as the practice of the time permitted, and that he would fast the day before the reception. He was often found in ecstasy during Holy Mass and after receiving the sacred Host.

Eucharistic Miracles
Joan Carroll Cruz