This is an article that I wrote for our bimonthly St. Malachy newsletter:
Looking for a Deeper Prayer Life – Try Adoration!
For 21 years on the near Westside our Lord has been adored ceaselessly at the Divine Mercy Adoration Chapel (the building between Ritter and St. Michael’s). Over the course of 21 years there have been times where it seemed that it might not be able to survive because it is tough work getting people to sign up and commit to an hour of prayer every week, but nonetheless, the little chapel has endured. It is no secret that Catholicism can be fairly parochial in that our understanding of the Church is often our immediate parish. It is very important that we have endeavors such as the Divine Mercy Chapel that allow for parishes throughout the West Deanery to unite in working to help sustain it while also uniting us in providing a common opportunity to enjoy the fruits of Christ dwelling in our midst.
Mother Theresa once noted, "The time you spend with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament is the best time you will spend on earth. Each moment that you spend with Jesus will deepen your union with Him and make your soul everlastingly more glorious and beautiful in Heaven, and will help bring about everlasting peace on earth." Similarly, Pope John Paul II once stated “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." We have so many amazing people doing amazing social outreach here at St. Malachy! The bulletin is stuffed full of possibilities for people looking to carry out Christ’s command to work for the poor, the lonely, the sick, the imprisoned, etc. The interesting thing about this is that Mother Theresa was arguably the greatest social justice worker of our time, and yet she says the best thing we can do to bring peace to our world is to spend time with Christ in the Blessed Sacrament! Likewise, the late Holy Father was one of the true champions of peace in our time, working tirelessly to bring an end to wars and regimes of hate throughout the world. However, like Mother Theresa, he says the best thing to do is perpetually adore our Lord.
In my own life I can certainly testify to the power of making a holy hour. When people ask me what I’ve experienced to be the most profitable spiritual endeavor of my life I always answer without hesitation, “the holy hour.” The beauty of spending an hour with our Lord when we are able is that it allows us to spend some time ridding ourselves of all of the distractions that can occur when we sit down to pray.
With regards to the Divine Mercy Chapel, first of all, I hope you use it when you are able. To have Jesus gaze upon you and to gaze upon him in the Blessed Sacrament will alter your life. Also, I ask you to consider signing up for a weekly hour that you can commit to if you feel God leading you in that direction. It is easy to find subs if something springs up, and I firmly believe that you will reap a copious spiritual bounty that will really amaze you. If you are looking to deepen your spiritual life, and you’ve tried some other things but they aren’t working, I urge you to try spending some regular time in prayer in the presence of the Lord.
Let’s continue to ensure that Christ will be adored perpetually at the Divine Mercy Chapel; it is a deanery-wide effort that I believe deserves our time.