Newsletter No. 34
In this great Jubilee year 2000, Our Holy Father has summoned us to make the Eucharist more known, loved and adored than ever before. This newsletter is a tribute to Pope John Paul II and his great desire: the spread of "Perpetual Adoration, with permanent exposition of the Blessed Sacrament ... in all parishes and Christian communities throughout the world." (June 1993 homily at the 45th International Eucharistic Congress in Seville, Spain)
On February 24, 1980, Pope John Paul II issued the encyclical letter Dominicae Cenae (On the Mystery and Worship of the Eucharist). In that document he says of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration: "May our adoration never cease." This is precisely what Perpetual Adoration is: adoration that never ceases.
In 1980, Our Holy Father gave an address at the Basilica of Montmartrein France where he spoke of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament Who has been perpetually adored there for more than one hundred years. He declared, "We come here to meet the Heart of Jesus pierced for us, from which water and blood gush. It is the redeeming love, which is at the origin of salvation, of our salvation, which is at the origin of the Church. Now still, today, the living Christ loves us and presents his heart to us as the source of our redemption... We are called not only to meditate and contemplate on this mystery of Christ's love; we are called to take part in it. It is the mystery of the Holy Eucharist, the center of our faith, the center of our worship of Christ's merciful love manifested in his Sacred Heart, a mystery which is adored here night and day. In the Holy Eucharist, this is also the meaning of perpetual adoration "we enter the movement of love from which all interior progress and all apostolate efficacy springs."
On December 2, 1981, Pope John Paul II began Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration with Exposition in a chapel at St. Peter's in Rome, with the hope and prayer that every Catholic Church throughout the world would follow. In his opening prayer, "Stay with us, Lord," the Pope urged all parishes to begin Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. He also proclaimed that, "The best the surest and the most effective way of establishing everlasting peace on the face of the earth is through the great power of Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament."
Upon his arrival in Korea on October 7, 1989 for the 44th International Eucharistic Congress the Holy Father went to Good Shepherd Parish in Seoul. This is one of seventy-five parishes in Korea that has Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. During a period of Eucharistic Adoration there, the Holy Father gave a homily in which he said: "It is most fitting that my first stop among the Korean people should be in a Church such as this, where the minds and hearts of the faithful are constantly raised up in adoration before Christ in the Most Holy Eucharist." (L.Osservatore Romano, English edition, 16 October 1989).
Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration promotes a goal of the Second Vatican Council, the involvement of the laity. It is both an apostolate and a means of personal spiritual growth for the laity. Pope John Paul II says in Dominicae Cenae: "The encouragement and the deepening of Eucharistic worship are proofs of the authentic renewal which the Council set itself as an aim and of which they are the central point," and "Jesus waits for us in this Sacrament of Love. Let us be generous with our time in going to meet Him in Adoration and contemplation that is full of faith and ready to make reparation for the great faults and crimes of the world."
In his 1996 letter to the Bishop of Liege, Our Holy Father writes: "Through adoration [of the Blessed Sacrament], the Christian mysteriously contributes to the radical transformation of the world and to the sowing of the Gospel."
Time and time again, Our Holy Father has repeated his great desire for us to spread Perpetual Adoration of Jesus in the Most Holy Eucharist throughout the world. The Pope continued to witness to this great need during his most recent visit to the Americas. In the Mass he celebrated in honor of the Sacred Heart at the Trans World Dome in St. Louis, Our Holy Father said, "In Eucharistic Adoration we meet the merciful love of God that passes through the Heart of Jesus Christ." Upon his arrival to the Cathedral in St. Louis for the interdenominational prayer service, His Holiness first publicly knelt before the Jesus in Blessed Sacrament for several moments of prayer, drawing strength from the Personal Presence of Jesus Who is Unity and Love.
This is why Our Holy Father said in his first encyclical, "Every member of the Church, especially Bishops and Priests, must be vigilant in seeing that this Sacrament of Love shall be at the center of the life of the people of God, so that through all of the manifestations of worship due It, Christ shall be given back .love for love; and truly become the life of our souls," (Redemptor Hominis, The Redeemer of Man).
St. Paul says that, "Faith comes through hearing, and how are they to hear unless there is someone to preach?" Pope John Paul II is now calling the whole people of God to preach! The laity need to learn to evangelize each other and go out into the parish. The Pope tells us this is the age for Eucharistic Evangelization and is calling upon every parish to have Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration with exposition. Let us say "yes!" to our Holy Father.s appeal to evangelize for The Eucharist.
As we celebrate the 2000th birthday of Jesus, let us do the will of Our Father in Heaven, as revealed by Our Holy Father on earth, that Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament may be adored perpetually in "all parishes and Christian communities throughout the world." May we respond generously and "take an active, conscientious and responsible part in the mission of the Church in this great moment in history made especially dramatic by occurring on the threshold of the Third Millennium," (Christifideles Laici, The Members of Christ's Faithful People).
Pope John Paul II, the Vicar of Christ, successor of Peter and universal leader of the Church has beckoned us over and over again during his papacy, "Open, indeed, open wide the doors to Christ!" May we open our hearts and our Churches that Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament may be perpetually adored, that we may do the will of Our Father in Heaven and Our Father on earth today, that His Kingdom may come. Then we will have answered the call of Our Blessed Mother Mary and help bring all souls to her Eucharistic Son.
Let us respond to Our Holy Father's Call for World Peace: Start Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in your parish today!
Contact us to schedule a Missionary, obtain information, and materials in starting Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration:
Missionaries of the Blessed Sacrament
PO Box 1701
Plattsburgh, NY 12901
Phone: (518) 561-8193 Fax: (518) 566-7103
"Our communal worship at Mass must be together with our personal worship of Jesus in Eucharistic Adoration in order that our love may be complete," (Pope John Paul II, Sept. 29., 1979 Phoenix Park, Dublin, Ireland).
"...Yes, beloved brothers and sisters, it is important that we live and teach how to live the total mysteries of the Eucharist: the Sacrament of Sacrifice, of the Banquet, and of the permanent Presence of Jesus Christ the Savior....the several forms of worship of the Most Holy Eucharist are an extension and at the same time a preparation for the Sacrifice of the Mass and Communion. Will it be necessary to insist again on the deep spiritual and theological motivations of worship to the Most Holy Sacrament outside of the celebration of the Mass? It is true that the reservation of the Sacrament was made, from the beginning, in order to be able to take Communion to the sick and to those absent from the celebration. But, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church says, .for the deepening of the faith in the Real Presence of Christ in His Eucharist, the Church became aware of the meaning of the silent adoration of the Lord present under the Eucharistic species." (n. 1379). (Pope John Paul II, June 1993 homily at the 45th International Eucharistic Congress in Seville, Spain)
"Outside the Eucharistic celebration, the Church is careful to venerate the Blessed Sacrament ... Remaining in silence before the Blessed Sacrament, it is Christ totally and really present whom we discover, whom we adore and with whom we are in contact. ..." (Pope John Paul II, May 1996 letter to the Bishop of Liege)
"The Catholic Church has always offered and still offers to the sacrament of the Eucharist the cult of adoration, not only during Mass, but also outside of it, reserving the consecrated hosts with the utmost care, exposing them to the solemn veneration of the faithful, and carrying them in procession," (Pope Paul VI, Mysterium Fidei, 56).
Article 80 of Holy Communion and the Worship of the Eucharist Outside Mass states: "The same piety which moves the faithful to Eucharistic adoration attracts them to a deeper participation in the Paschal mystery."
"He [Christ] took Flesh of the flesh of Mary. He walked on earth in that same Flesh, and gave that same Flesh to us to be eaten for our salvation. Moreover no one eats that Flesh unless he has first adored it ... and we sin by not adoring. Who is the Bread of heaven except Christ?" (St. Augustine)