The importance of Eucharistic Adoration is shown in the fact that the Church has a ritual that regulates it: the Rite of Eucharistic Exposition and Benediction. This is an extension of the adoration of the Blessed Sacrament which occurs in every Mass: "Behold the Lamb of God, behold him who takes away the sins of the world. Blessed are those called to the supper of the Lamb." Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament flows from the sacrifice of the Mass and serves to deepen our hunger for Communion with Christ and the rest of the Church.
Although exposition of the Blessed Sacrament may help foster devotion to Christ's presence in the Eucharist, a parish's first priority is well-planned and well-celebrated Masses. Parishes seeking to inaugurate or restore eucharistic devotions should reflect on their practices during the communion rite and their commitment of time and money (stewardship) to social services. When these issues have been addressed, then the deeper understanding that Christ intended in the Eucharist will be achieved.
The Church gives allowance for briefer periods of exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, perhaps monthly or weekly for a fixed period of time. Because the Eucharist is being exposed in a monstrance or ciborium, it is a ritual of the Church and the directives of HCWEOM (nos. 93-100) and the liturgical norms established by the Church are to be strictly followed. Brief periods of exposition should include music, Scripture, a brief preaching, intercessory prayer, liturgical ministers (at least a musician and a leader), and time for silent prayer. By including these, parishes will clearly link this time of exposition with the celebration of the Eucharist at Mass.
The exposed Blessed Sacrament must never be left alone (EM, nos. 63 & 65; HCWEOM, no. 90; CODE OF CANON LAW, no. 942). There must be a minimum of two people present per hour of Exposition.
At Mary Help of Christians Parish, we currently offer Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament on certain Holy Days, and every Wednesday evening from 8-9pm, following the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Due to a historical lack of participation, to extend the time of the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, we need committed people to be present during the entire time the Blessed Sacrament is exposed in the monstrance.
Sign up sheets are located at the back of the Church if you are interested in committing to at least one hour a week. To sign up, you must list your full name, phone number and email address, as well as hour you are available. This will help us determine the possibility of extending the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, and the best times to do so.
You can also send your information via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.