Eucharistic Adoration, Family Prayer and Washing Feet
Fr Phil Gaffney PP reflects on the twenty-fifth anniversary celebrations of Eucharistic Adoration in St Mary's Parish, Drogheda.
"On the Feast of Corpus Christi 2013, in possibly the largest worldwide act of prayer in history, Catholics prayed before the Blessed Sacrament in parish churches and cathedrals across the globe. Pope Francis presided at Eucharistic adoration and Benediction in St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. Catholics taking part in the global Holy Hour prayed for two intentions chosen by the Holy Father. One of those intentions was for “victims of war, human trafficking, drug running and slave labour”, as well as “ migrants and refugees, and those who experience marginalisation”. A theme very close to us all these days.
Here in St Mary’s Parish, Drogheda on 4 - 6 September we have 40 hours of continual Eucharistic Adoration interspersed with Holy Hours for children and young people as well as a Triduum of Masses.
Today’s Gospel reminds us that deafness can afflict us in many ways. We need space for listening to Jesus and responding to his call. We go out then to give witness of God’s love, to listen and proclaim God’s word as Bishop Denis Nulty encouraged us on Friday evening. Like Jesus at the last supper with his disciples we must spend time in Jesus’ company and follow his example of washing the feet of his disciples. It was wonderful to welcome back Bishop Denis to our parish and we were delighted to have him with us once again.
On Saturday evening Fr Paul Crosbie gave us an inspiring talk on passing on faith in the home and encouraging parents to recognise the living presence of God in our family life and to create an atmosphere of faith and opportunities for prayer in the home.
On Sunday morning we welcomed Bishop Michael Smith who has always encouraged Adoration groups in our diocese, and who has been a good friend to St Mary’s Adoration Group for the past 25 years. The Bishop offers us the example of Mary our Blessed Mother as an icon of faith and adoration.
We need silence to truly hear what God is saying to us in our lives, and then we are called to live that faith in our homes and in the world. We pray that many more parishioners will sign up to commit themselves each week to spend time in prayer in the presence of Jesus.