Sunday, May 15, 2011

World Day of Prayer for Vocations

Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

"Bishops are testifying to the clear relationship between Eucharistic devotion and an increase of vocations to the priesthood and religious life," 
Archbishop Justin Rigali of St. Louis, Missouri.
"Recently I learned that a chapel for perpetual adoration of the Blessed Sacrament has been inaugurated in one of our parishes. Particularly encouraging was the spirit of collaboration which has characterized this initiative which includes more than 600 people from six parishes, all of whom have committed themselves to one hour of prayer in the chapel each week.
"There are already a number of parishes in the Archdiocese which have offered the opportunity for perpetual adoration of the Blessed Sacrament...
"Young people, the sick, mothers and fathers of families and many other categories of God’s people have discovered anew in prayer before the Blessed Sacrament a wonderful opportunity for ‘praying to the Lord of the harvest to send laborers into His harvest.’ For this reason I have asked that every parish participate . . ." ("Signs of the Times", Archbishop Justin Rigali, St. Louis Review, December 15, 1995, p.6).

Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

Stanley Joseph Ott, Bishop of Baton Rouge, Louisiana writes that he was given the inspiration to begin Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration over dinner with "Bishops Flynn of Lafayette. Jacobs of Alexandria, and Speyrer of Lake Charles." In their dioceses priests were inviting Missionaries of the Blessed Sacrament to begin Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in their parishes. Among the many blessings which encouraged Bishop Ott was that of vocations.


Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

When his excellency, Bishop Ott, spoke to Mother Teresa of Calcutta, he asked her "how she got so many women to join her religious order". She explained: "We were just like other religious congregations with few vocations. Then at our chapter in the 1970s we made a decision to have a holy hour in all our convents each evening. Many blessings resulted from this Holy Hour the Bishop witnessed, for Mother Teresa continued, "We began to see more clearly our mission to serve the poor in Christ’s name. We began to live a more fruitful family life among ourselves. We experienced double the number of vocations in our congregation. And we grew personally in our intimacy with the Lord present in the Eucharist." The Bishop is "confident" that this will occur in his diocese too ("Bishop’s Notebook", Stanley Joseph Ott, Bishop of Baton Rouge, The Catholic Commentator, August 5, 1992, p. 4).
"It was not until 1973, when we began our daily Holy Hour that our community started to grow and blossom...," Bl Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

At St. John Fisher Seminary in Stamford, Connecticut there is a Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration chapel. According to the rector, Rev. Stephen M. DiGiovanni, the reason for beginning Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration was to "encourage young men of the community to find a vocation to the priesthood." The enrollment at the seminary rose 50 percent within the first year that the chapel was founded ("Worshipers find solace in perpetual chapel", Robin Denaro, Connecticut Post, Saturday, January 6, 1998, C2).


Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

Bishop John Magee of Cloyne in Eire, Ireland reports that vocations to the priesthood in his diocese have tripled since he started Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration.In 1990 there were 16 seminarians and by 1993 the number had risen to 45 (‘By Your Fruits", Dr. J. F. Boyle. The Link, January 1996).


Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration

Allentown Bishop Thomas Welsh lauded St. Joseph’s PEA program for its large number of adorers. Msgr. Anthony Wassel of St. Joseph’s Parish in Mahanoy City, Pennsylvania believes that a late vocation to the priesthood and a contemplative order of nuns are the result of Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration in his parish. He says, "the power is in the Eucharist" ("God’s Work!":Perpetual Adoration, John Haut, Soul Magazine, January-February, 1998, p. 16).
Bishop Seamus Hegarty of Derry, Ireland says that when he was Bishop of Raphoe, there were 20 vocations in 1990, and 19 came from parishes that had Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. He believes that PEA is the greatest contribution he made as Bishop ("By Your Fruits", Dr. J. F. Boyle, The Link, January 1996).

"Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is the solution to our problems of declining vocations," Ricardo J. Cardinal Vidal, Archbishop - Cebu, Philippines.

St. Peter Julian Eymard made a similar and more far reaching statement: "Let us never forget that an age prospers or dwindles in proportion to its devotion to the Holy Eucharist. This is the measure of its spiritual life and its faith, of its charity and its virtue".

(Reprinted from Serra Club Newsletter) 

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