Aug 5, 2008
Occasionally throughout the year I will receive an inquiry from the Holy See about one or other aspect of Catholic life in our diocese. Those who assist the pope in his pastoral care for the universal church do their best to give him an accurate picture of the faith and practice of Catholics around the world on an ongoing basis. Every few years, each bishop is asked to report to the pope personally on the life of the diocese. Several months ago I was asked to submit a brief report on the practice of Eucharistic adoration in our diocese. I held on to a copy of the report to remind myself to speak with you about this blessing of Catholic devotion when I had the chance to do so.
We are blessed to have many churches and chapels across our diocese where Eucharistic adoration is offered on a regular basis. Of course, the Blessed Sacrament is reserved in the tabernacle in our churches, and Catholics are encouraged to visit the church to pray privately before the Eucharistic Lord whenever they can make the time. When we speak of Eucharistic adoration, we normally refer to a more formal period of time during which the Eucharist is exposed in the monstrance on the altar. Depending on the local situation, adoration may be scheduled from one to seven days a week, and from one to 24 hours a day. In some communities, parishes or groups of parishes are able to sponsor "perpetual" adoration, and someone is praying before the exposed Blessed Sacrament during every hour of the week, day and night.