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"He is with us always" by Rosemary Bogdan (CatholicMom.com) Image credit: Pixabay.com (2018), CC0/PD[/caption] For a number of years now, I have had a scheduled hour to adore the Real Presence of Jesus in the Exposed Blessed Sacrament. I have to say that this hour is a highlight of my week for a number of reasons. First, it is an enforced hour of quiet prayer time. I have to be there. I am signed up for it and Exposition and Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament cannot happen without adorers committed for every hour, since the Exposed Blessed Sacrament cannot be left alone. I have the privilege of being a member of a parish that has Eucharistic Adoration 24 hours a day, seven days a week. That adds up to a lot of people scheduled. In order for Adoration to be so completely available to the parish, each of us must be there at our time. I plan around my hour. Nothing gets scheduled then. It’s a wonderful time that I look forward to. If I just went when I could find the time, it wouldn’t happen often, because free time in a schedule gets filled in like a vacuum. But this hour, my Adoration hour, is reserved for Jesus. It’s delightfully quiet in the Eucharistic Chapel. Wonderfully quiet. The silence alone is a precious gift, so seldom available these days. I can pray the Rosary, read my Magnificat, or just quietly talk to Jesus in the depth of my heart. Best of all, I can listen. I can just be there in His Presence, knowing that He knows me better (much better!) than I know myself. If I am in pain, as we all are sometimes, I don’t even have to say anything. I can gaze at Him and know that His very Presence is healing me. He is right there, as the closest of friends. He knows my pain. He knows my joys. He knows my sorrows. He knows. And I can just gaze at Him and love Him. I can feel His life, His wisdom, His love for me … and His love for all mankind. The room is filled with His peace. And filled with His Presence. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says of contemplation:
Contemplation is a gaze of faith, fixed on Jesus. “I look at him and he looks at me”: This is what a certain peasant of Ars in the time of his holy curé used to say while praying before the tabernacle. This focus on Jesus is a renunciation of self. His gaze purifies our heart; the light of the countenance of Jesus illumines the eyes of our heart and teaches us to see everything in the light of his truth and his compassion for all men. Contemplation also turns its gaze on the mysteries of the life of Christ. Thus it learns the “interior knowledge of our Lord,” the more to love him and follow him. (St. Ignatius of Loyola; CCC 2715)
This is what happens in Adoration. The heart is purified and enlightened. The soul is nourished, quieted, and better equipped for life’s challenges. It receives the love of God and then is better able to return it back to Him. If you’ve never had a scheduled Adoration hour, I encourage you to sign up for one. It will change your life. It’s not possible to sit before the exposed Blessed Sacrament and not be affected. The healing grace of God Himself surrounds you. He is there before you, loving you, doing His work, making you into who He created you to be. As His life and grace permeates the room, you receive that peace that surpasses all understanding. And, as incredible as it seems, God Himself is delighting in your company. Blessed be God in all creation. Blessed be God in the Real Presence of the Eucharist. He said that He would be with us always. And He is. If you need comfort, if you need peace, if you need help, just go to Him. He is waiting. Always. Would you like to spend some time with the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of our Lord Jesus? Go to Him.
Copyright 2020 Rosemary Bogdan