Calling all Adorers

 

Is Jesus important enough to you to set aside one special hour each week to be with Him?

 

This is a great invitation, but it comes with a great responsibility to fulfill the commitment.  There are hours to accommodate all walks of life.    There are parishioners who  have had the same hour since PA(Perpetual Adoration) began in our parish 24 years ago on January 6, 1994. Please watch the bulletin for open hours or speak to someone with whom you might switch.  The bulletin announcement is placed as soon as an hour comes open.    The cardinal rule of PA, is that the Blessed Sacrament is never left unattended.   This does not preclude using the restroom or the telephone in the sacristy, but it is best to leave the sacristy door open while you are in the other room.

 

Emergency situations.  If you feel threatened, don’t hesitate to call 911. We should discourage sleeping in the Oratory by vagrants.   If someone needs a place to stay and they have an ID, the police can take them to a motel and the Ministerial Alliance will pay for a night’s room.  If there is a tornado warning, repose the Blessed Sacrament and go the basement.  Repose is the official term of returning the Blessed Sacrament to the tabernacle.   Those who are Extraordinary Ministers of Communion know where the key is kept.  If you are not a Extraordinary Minister of Communion, call the emergency number 620-575-5520, and I will try to care for the Blessed Sacrament.   If you absolutely must leave, please call one of the emergency numbers listed and wait until a person can come to take your place.   In the final end, human life should be protected.  The Lord has already died and death has no power over him.   Yet, the Blessed Sacrament is the greatest treasure and deserves our utmost care.  If you do not feel secure, especially during the night, you are encouraged to lock the door, and look through the peephole, then only open for someone that you trust.   The other doors are all secure to the outside after about 10:00pm. 

 

The books available in the entryway are available for reading.  Most are donated books of a spiritual nature.   Ideally, the hour is best spent in quiet contemplation, but if you need material for meditation, these books should be helpful.   For the most part, smart-phones are discouraged because they are a great source of distraction.   I have to confess that I use mine to access the liturgy of the hours and have even checked face book for prayer concerns, but generally it is a bad idea.  If you receive an urgent call, please step out of the oratory to answer it.   A better option would be, to have your voice mail set up so that you can check your messages when done praying and avoid this added distraction.  There are various Bibles available and Lectio Divina,  which is reading a single scripture passage repeatedly, is always a good practice, even out loud if you are alone with the Lord.  There are many novena or other prayer materials.   The rosary is always a splendid option. 

 

Because of the sacredness of the space and the environment of prayer, only approved service animals are allowed into the oratory and Church.   This is out of respect of all those who are there to pray and in concern for both physical and spiritual well-being of others.

 

You are welcome to adjust  the lights according to your preference except the four in the front  that spotlight the Blessed Sacrament.   If the Sanctuary lamp candle burns out, there are candles in the cupboard above the sink and matches in the metal cabinet.

 

Please sign in to acknowledge your presence for your hour or for someone for whom you are substituting.   There is a list of substitutes who may be contacted when you are unable to make your hour.  Make sure the person who enters is there to replace you for the next hour.   A simple prayer together of thanks and petition before the Lord is good.  We will begin to post a weekly petition.

 

Please try to arrive on time in respect for those who precede you.     St. Teresa of Avila said, if you commit for an hour of prayer, be certain to stay for the last 5 minutes, because that is probably when God will speak to you. But one , must be present for the first five minutes too.  Yet, to be prepared for  an hour and to wait 30 minutes more, or to be extended to 2 or 3 hours is really beyond a normal adorers capacity.  Please be on time.  

 

In cases of snow or other storms, we have not found it necessary to repose the Blessed Sacrament, but if that happens, you will be notified.   Fr. Wesley Schawe in Dodge City, famously stayed all night in the church with the Blessed Sacrament during a snowstorm, but if the roads are impassable, call the emergency number to cover the time, and a decision will be made to repose the Blessed Sacrament. The specific hours will be notified by phone. Please update your phone in the list when you change numbers.  The Blessed Sacrament is reposed  on  Holy Thursday at 6;00 PM until Holy Saturday night at midnight.  Adoration continues during this time until midnight on Thursday, all day Good Friday, and during the day on Holy Saturday preparing for the Vigil in the chapel of Our Lady of Guadalupe.

 

Group prayer should be done at the permission and blessing of the person whose hour it is.   Silence is the preferred prayer before the Blessed Sacrament, but occasionally there are reasons to gather together to sing and pray.   Still, the priority always goes to those who come to pray silently before the Blessed Sacrament, for it is in silence that God speaks most richly, but with the gracious permission of all present, communal prayer for one hour is permitted.   Please, keep conversations in the oratory to a minimum and respectfully at a very low tone.   I know I have found myself alone with someone many times who just needs to talk, which can be a special kind of prayer.   Always end the conversation with a prayer together closing the conversation including the Lord. 

 

I anticipate within the coming year we will try to install security cameras at the entrance to the oratory and in the school just to increase security of our adorers and our church.

 

So what do I do for an hour?

 

I have included a copy of various suggestions of how to spend a holy hour.    I offer to you Visits to the Most Blessed Sacrament and the Blessed Virgin Mary, by Saint Alphonsus Liguori.   He is the founder of the Redemptorists and well known to us.  He is the patron of our parish in Satanta.  He wrote these visits in the year 1745, over 250 years ago, but they remain a beautiful door into the contemplation of the Blessed Sacrament.    The classic forms of prayer in latin are oratio, Lectio, Meditatio y Contemplatio.   The first praying in voice either alone or with others in praise of God, hearing the word of God read,  Meditating upon the word, but the ultimate goal is simple contemplation of the beloved.   Please don’t try to read the book all at once, but take the time to read and reflect each visit that you make for 17 weeks and then begin again.    You will find each time it is new and deeper immersion into the mystery of God and his indwelling presence.