Skip to comments.Ancient Roman Catholic ritual making a comeback in Minnesota
Posted on 01/30/2005 6:27:26 PM PST by Catholic54321
MAPLE LAKE, Minn. - The ancient Roman Catholic ritual in which someone continuously adores the Eucharist, the wafter at the heart of the Catholic Mass, is making a comeback in St. Timothy's Catholic Church here, and nearly 40 other churches in the state.
"It's a bottom-up phenomenon," said John Boyle, a professor of theology and Catholic studies at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul. "It's been remarkable over the past 20 years to watch it grow, especially the past 10 years."
The practice is known as "perpetual adoration" and was once the purview of nuns and monks, but now in churches from International Falls to Sleepy Eye candles and lights blaze through the night for the faithful.
On a recent morning at St. Timothy's, there's a neighborliness and informality to the ritual. Howard Selander, 77, kneels while his wife, Lucille, 72, chats with Dale Bothun, a teacher who had the previous shift before they begin.
They tend the candles, do a rosary and pray for the sick then stair straight at the Eucharist, the blessed bread Catholics believe is the body of Jesus which is enshrined in a glass case flanked by flickering candles. It's 12:38 a.m.
"Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins. Save us from the fires of Hell," Lucille Selander said, rocking as she says the first of many repetitions of the prayer. "Lead all souls to heaven, especially those most in need of thy mercy."
The Selanders were probably not the only people performing the ritual in Minnesota that morning. The Rev. Victor Warkulwiz, a Pennsylvania priest who travels the country to help start adoration programs, said the ritual is making a comeback in the state.
"The Archdiocese of Minneapolis and St. Paul ... probably has the most chapels of perpetual adoration of any archdiocese in the country. It's one of the most fruitful areas for this anywhere," he said.
Warkulwiz has been in Minnesota every weekend this month.
People from around the world call Minnesotans for tips in starting their own programs. Peggy Powell, coordinator of one of the state's longest-running adorations at Epiphany Catholic Church in Coon Rapids, has taken some of those calls.
"I think we're going to have an explosion this year," Powell said. "People are just calling out of the woodwork. It's amazing."
Things are more formal at Epiphany in Coon Rapids; there's no chitchat in the chapel where Paulette Nelson, 62, has a weekly morning adoration on Tuesdays.
Her voice drops to a hush as she enters and signs the log book. She genuflects at the back of the chapel, bows her head and kisses the chapel floor.
"It's just as if Jesus were standing there," Nelson said, reflecting the Catholic view that Jesus is actually present. "You wouldn't go in and walk by him."
Throughout the Roman Catholic church's long history, perpetual adoration has rarely been widespread, so religious studies experts consider it astounding that it's made a resurgence in Minnesota. Parishioners call it miraculous.
"It's very interesting. I don't know what to make of it," said Randall Balmer, who heads the Religious Studies Department at Barnard College in New York. Balmer partly attributed the movement to the conservative influence of Pope John Paul.
In 1991, the pope began perpetual adoration at the Vatican and urged parishes everywhere to do the same.
The practice of perpetual adoration flowered in the Middle Ages in some European areas, according to the Catholic Encyclopedia. For most of the past century many U.S. parishes had certain times for round-the-clock adoration, but didn't do it year-round.
There are now 728 adoration chapels in the United States, according to the Real Presence Association of Chicago, a Catholic nonprofit that tracks and promotes adoration.
The Rev. Thomas Wilson, director of vocations for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis, said the number of Minnesota chapels that practice the ritual has doubled in the past 10 years or so.
Warkulwiz and the Real Presence Association's Carol Seydel both said that Minneapolis-St. Paul's archbishop, the Rev. Harry Flynn, has been a strong supporter of the practice.
But the Rev. Joseph Johnson, assistant chancellor for the archdiocese, said there was also a divine influence. He said parishioners must take the lead in making adoration work, regardless if church leaders support the practice.
"This is not something the priest can walk in and say, 'Gee, folks, this is what we're going to do,'" Johnson said. "This is not for the weak-kneed. It takes sacrifice and commitment."
This "ancient" practice has been going on for twenty+ years in our Novus Ordo parish 24/7. And yes, I'm gratified to see that is it catching on in many other places.
wonderful news! I was really surprised to learn how supportive infamous Bishop Flynn has been of Adoration.
lol the same thing I said to myself. And he doesn't appear to be Catholic either does he? Nor his wife.
This is a clear response by the faithful to the attempt made by the Catholic hierarchy to suppress the dogma of the Real Presence.
Nobody is attempting to suppress the dogma of the Real Presence.
Where do you dream up this nonsense?
I've been going to a Maronite Church here in Austin for a few weeks to try to get a handle on the Eastern Liturgies and lo and behold, to my surprise today, the Priest announced that they were going to begin trying to have Eucharistic Adoration, if only on Fridays for now. The parishioners seemed enthused, but then again I haven't seen a parish that was more perpetually enthused than this one.
The Indult Mas I attend is located at a Church that does have 24/7 Adoration. It's in the chapel at the Convent which has been long empty. A very fitting symbol I thought, of Christ's presence in the world despite the abandonment of so many of his former faithful.
LOL! Someone at AP doesn't know much about Catholicism.
yeah, I checked all the cathechisms, it's not there lol However it is in the dictionary:
1. n. One who, or that which, wafts.
2. n. A boat for passage.
1. v. t. To give notice to by waving something; to wave the hand to; to beckon.
2. v. t. To cause to move or go in a wavy manner, or by the impulse of waves, as of water or air; to bear along on a buoyant medium; as, a balloon was wafted over the channel.
3. v. t. To cause to float; to keep from sinking; to buoy.
4. v. i. To be moved, or to pass, on a buoyant medium; to float.
5. n. A wave or current of wind.
6. n. A signal made by waving something, as a flag, in the air.
7. n. An unpleasant flavor.
8. n. A knot, or stop, in the middle of a flag.
9. a long flag; often tapering
I bet these parishes have lots of vocations to the priesthood too! This is what does it -- prayer!
Huh? What are you talking about? How can 24/7 Adoration not virtually shout "The Real Presence?"
"How can 24/7 Adoration not virtually shout 'The Real Presence?'"
You really don't get it. Most of the world's Catholics will never attend one of these devotions. Most have only the slightest acquaintance with the dogma of the Real Presence due to its suppression in the Novus Ordo Liturgy. Polls bear this out.
Ask yourself--when was the last time you knelt for Communion? When did you last receive Communion on the tongue? Why has the tabernacle been removed from its central place of honor in the sanctuary? Why were the words "Mystery of faith" transposed from the liturgical text in such a way as to NOT refer to the reality of Transubstantiation? Many more such questions come to mind--but these suffice to prove my point.
In fact, Cardinal Ratzinger himself has pointed to the danger that liturgists and bishops pose by interpreting the Novus Ordo in opposition to Trent:
"It is only against this background of the effective denial of the authority of Trent, that the bitterness of the struggle against allowing the celebration of Mass according to the 1962 Missal, after the liturgical reform, can be understood. The possibility of so celebrating constitutes the strongest, and thus (for them) the most intolerable contradiction of the opinion of those who believe that the faith in the Eucharist formulated by Trent has lost its value." (speech delivered at Fontgombault, 2003.)
The loss of faith in the Real Presense of Christ in the Blessed Sacrament is self evident in the many priests, and (sadly) some bishops who share this fate.
Much confusion and ambiguity cloud the issue in terms of what is taught to the young, and to converts. It is expressed in some catechism texts, sermons, extemporized mass prayers, hymns, etc. It is also self-evident in modern churches & wreckovated old ones.
Sadly, very few parishes actually have Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. Most do not even have Benediction. Public devotions are normaly somewhere between being literally supressed. and treated with a sort of benign neglect - at best. They are usually not discused - their benefit to the soul not preached about, and they are certainly not encouraged for the most part.