Archbishop Filomeno do Nascimento Vieira Dias of Angola’s Archdiocese of Luanda has asked the people of God under his pastoral care to dedicate the last Sunday of the month to adoration of the Blessed Sacrament as part of the preparations for the Church’s 2025 Jubilee Year

Pope Francis on Jan. 21 announced the start of a Year of Prayer in preparation for the Church’s 2025 Jubilee Year, the second in his pontificate after the extraordinary Jubilee Year of Mercy in 2015.

“Following the Holy Father’s call, as an archdiocese, we will be holding adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on the last Sunday of each month in all parishes and, in alternate months, a meditation on the importance of prayer in the life of the Church,” the archbishop said in his April 18 message.

Eucharistic adoration, he said, facilitates “a true encounter with Christ.”

The archbishop highlighted the link between prayer and holiness as important, saying: “Just as there is no true encounter with Christ that does not give rise to holiness, so there is no holiness without a deep life of prayer.”

Prayer provides “the space in which holiness takes shape,” Dias further said. “Holiness is the journey of discovering God’s beauty and truth in every man and woman of all times.”

“Holiness is fulfilled in the silent openness of one’s life to the totality of God’s love,” he added. 

Referring to Pope Francis’ February 2022 letter to the pro-prefect of the Dicastery for Evangelization, Archbishop Salvatore Rino Fisichella, Dias highlighted aspects of prayer that he considers essential as monthly Eucharistic adoration in all parishes is set to begin.

He encouraged “prayer, above all else, to renew our desire to be in the presence of the Lord, to listen to him and to adore him. Prayer, moreover, to thank God for the many gifts of his love for us and to praise his work in creation, which summons everyone to respect it and to take concrete and responsible steps to protect it.”

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Referring more to the Holy Father’s letter, Dias encouraged “prayer as the expression of a single heart and soul, which then translates into solidarity and the sharing of our daily bread.”

He also called for “prayer that makes it possible for every man and woman in this world to turn to the one God and to reveal to him what lies hidden in the depths of their heart.”

He went on to describe prayer as “the royal road to holiness, which enables us to be contemplative even in the midst of activity.”

“In a word, may it be an intense year of prayer in which hearts are opened to receive the outpouring of God’s grace and to make the ‘Our Father,’ the prayer Jesus taught us, the life program of each of his disciples,” he said.

“Let us, therefore, entrust ourselves to the intercession of Mama Muxima [‘Mother Heart’], the beloved mother, who taught us through her life that prayer, as the silent gaze of the soul toward God, is the first fruit of faith and the place in which Christians learn to keep the precious things of God in the sacred place of the heart, to meditate on them daily,” he said.

This article was originally published by ACI Africa, CNA’s African news partner, and has been adapted for CNA.