As Cistercians we are well aware of Saint Benedict’s warnings against bitter zeal—the kind that fueled Saint Paul’s earlier persecution of the church. It is well to remember, however, that the spiritual energy associated with zeal is fundamentally neutral. It is the objects or goals towards which zeal is directed that determine if it is bitter or good zeal. Thus, immediately after his conversion and baptism, Paul directs his irrepressible zeal towards preaching the gospel he had sought to eradicate. This suggests that zeal is fundamentally good since it is a sign of life and engagement with the spiritual quest. Its absence can indicate disengagement from the spiritual struggle and a capitulation to acedia. Accordingly, zeal is one aspect of the life that Jesus promises will be given to those who faithfully receive his body and blood in the Eucharist. Thus, we pray that our reception of the Eucharist this morning, many rekindle our zeal and foster the good kind that leads us to God and separates us from evil.