WEDNESDAY: 12midnight to 1am—9th June (temporary)
THURSDAY: 12midnight to 1am - 10th June (temporary)
FRIDAY: 1am to 2am (permanent)
SATURDAY: 5am to 6am - 12th, 19th & 26th June & 3rd July (temporary)
by Fr Doug Harris 2021
In 1981 the Pope, John Paul II established Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome and at that time, he prayed fervently that every parish would have Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. Adoration is simply appreciation that the Blessed Sacrament is really Our Lord. This appreciation is expressed when a parish has a chapel or sets aside a small prayer room that is open 7 days a week, 24 hours a day with permanent exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. There are 168 hours in a week. All that is needed is for each of us to be willing to spend just one hour - once a week - with Our Lord, so a roster can be organised where every hour is covered, and there’d be at least one person in the chapel at all times. This way the chapel can always be left open. Our Lord stays with us day and night in the Blessed Sacrament to call us back to Himself.
Each moment we spend in His presence will deepen our union with Christ and make our soul everlastingly more beautiful and glorious in Heaven. For just as you can’t be exposed to the sun without receiving its rays neither can you come to the Son of God in the Blessed Sacrament without being bathed with all the rays of His resurrection. This hour Our Lord wants you to spend with Him is spent any way you want to, with your own favourite prayer book or reading the Holy Bible or praying the Holy Rosary, the rosary is my favourite prayer because when we pray the Rosary in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament, WE LOVE OUR LORD with the HEART OF MARY who makes up for everything that is lacking in us. It is as if Mary herself were making the Holy Hour, or you may be so tired or troubled or worn out that you may want to do NOTHING but just sit and relax and enjoy the sweet peace that comes from simply being with the one who loves you the most, Our Lord in the Most Blessed Sacrament. Even if you think you can’t pray very well, because you are easily distracted and get restless, the mere fact that you get into your car and go to the chapel IS IN ITSELF A PRAYER OF FAITH that brings great joy to His Heart. For nowhere on earth are you more loved, nowhere on earth are you more welcomed, nowhere on earth is your presence more appreciated, than in the presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament.
What I pray at this moment is that each of us may be convinced of the joy that we bring to the Heart of Jesus with every Holy Hour we make. Because of this great joy you give to Jesus, He blesses the whole world during your Holy Hour of prayer. There is a marvellous devotion called Divine Mercy which our Pope, John Paul II had approved. It was St. Faustina of the Blessed Sacrament that Our Lord appeared to. St. Faustina saw that ‘every Holy Hour made in the presence of Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, the Divine rays from Our Lord would go out from the chapel and encircle the entire earth where ‘every single person’ that is ‘every man, every woman and every child on the face of the earth would experience a new effect of God’s Mercy.’ That is why Pope John Paul II said: “Each Holy Hour that you make in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament brings the whole world and everybody in the world CLOSER TO CHRIST.” You change the world and make the world a better place to live in with each Holy Hour of prayer. Through the Blessed Sacrament our Lord gives Himself without limit. God’s grace or love is always more, it is never exhausted because it is infinite. There is no limit to what our Lord wants to achieve in us, there can’t be any limit to infinite Love, and because Our Lord is completely committed to us in the Blessed Sacrament, each adorer is given a new sanctity or a new holiness; the sanctity or holiness of Christ Himself. Our Lord wants us to be completely one with Him, like our Blessed Mother who is described in Luke 1:28 as “full of Grace” or full of the Holy Spirit, or full of God.
In the Blessed Sacrament our Lord’s prayer to His Father in John 17: 21-23 is fulfilled: “I pray that they may be One. Father, may they be in Us, just as You are in Me, and I Am in You. May they be One, so that the world may believe You sent Me.” As Bl Dina Belanger, who died in 1929, was able to say... “Jesus and I are One, Jesus alone.” In a book called Sinu Jesu, Our Lord says to a Benedictine Monk: “Chapels of Adoration are not mere refuges for the devout. They are the radiant pulsating centres of an intense Divine activity that goes beyond the walls of the place where I Am adored to penetrate homes, and schools and hospitals; to reach even those dark and cold places wherein souls are enslaved to satan; to penetrate hearts, to heal the infirm, and call home those who have wandered far from Me.” (Sinu Jesu p169). “Adore Me, and the radiance of My Eucharistic Face will begin to change the face of the earth.” (ibid. p170).
The advantage of having a chapel open all the time is that everyone can participate, because everyone can find at least one hour a week to be with Our Lord and whatever hour you choose - morning, afternoon, evening or night - is most pleasing to the Lord. As scripture reminds us Our Lord spent nights in prayer. St John Paul II was a busy person and yet he still made time for prayer. According to a Cardinal who was with the Holy Father all day, the Pope, began his day with a Holy Hour before the Blessed Sacrament and ended his day with a Holy Hour, plus he prayed one whole night each week before the Blessed Sacrament. For me personally, my favourite time to pray is in the middle of the night. An hour spent with Our Lord in the middle of the night is an anointed hour. These night hours are the hours Our Lord requested when He appealed to His apostles: “Could you not watch one hour with Me.” These are anointed hours because it takes a sacrifice for anyone to be willing to spend an hour with Jesus in the middle of the night.