Saturday, 25 January 2014

Eucharistic Adoration in the Diocese of Arundel & Brighton

The Arundel and Brighton Diocesan Adoration Committee are members of the worldwide Apostolate of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration . The mission is to assist parishes to establish and maintain viable weekly Eucharistic Adoration and witness to the real presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. To achieve this it is good to keep the words of William Ward, a Baptist missionary, in mind as we endeavour to plan purposefully, prepare prayerfully, proceed positively and pursue persistently. This we have been doing since our initial formation in October 2012, and under the spiritual guidance of Canon Tom Treherne and the discerning eye of our current chairman Anthony Calway we are visiting the next cluster of parishes in our Diocese.

The work has not been without its setbacks, but God helps us meet the challenges with the power of the Holy Spirit and as the original presenters from Ireland reminded us during our training, “It is God's work not ours and He will achieve His purpose.”

Although this extended period of Adoration is lay-led, it requires the support of, and agreement from the parish priest. Following a request for us to visit the parish, a presentation talk is given at all the weekend Masses. Meetings take place before and after the presentation, in which the local parish team are helped to collate the information provided by those parishioners who have committed to an hour of weekly adoration. A weekly rota is drawn up and a Mass is planned to signify the start of this new parish initiative. The parish team needs to keep a vigilant eye on the rota to ensure that there are sufficient people keeping watch with the Lord at any given hour. The Diocesan team commits to supporting the Parish team to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

So what are the benefits of weekly Eucharistic Adoration? On a personal level that is perhaps for each of us to discover. The mere fact that we take time out at a specific time each week to spend an hour being with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is in itself a prayer of great faith and the Lord does not fail to give us what we need.

Ann, a working mother with three children says; “I couldn't do without this time with Jesus. The peace and tranquillity help me connect, I can pray”.

For Kate: “My Lord and God is in the room with me present in a small piece of bread and I can at last pray without any distractions”.

Jesus, full of grace and truth, makes us new; He forms our character, conquers our vices, increases our virtues, consoles us when we are troubled, strengthens us when we are weak, invites us to imitate Him and fills us with His love to bring to everyone we meet. “Do you want the Lord to give you many graces? Visit Him often” (St. John Bosco)

In our local communities our churches can be open when a nucleus of faithful parishioners commit to an hour of Adoration and I have personally known passers by come in for prayerful support in a time of crisis. So let us pray for the conversion of our country for surely then we would have men and women drawn to serving Christ through the ordained ministries of the priesthood, religious life and diaconate.

If after reading this article you would like a presentation in your parish please speak to your parish priest and then contact our secretary, Rosemary Westcott either by email: raw21@talk21.com or mobile: 07905 565395.

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