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Diocese to participate in worldwide eucharistic adoration

Posted By May 30, 2013 | 1:01 pm | Lead Story #2

By Cindy Wooden
And CFP staff

VATICAN CITY (CNS) –  Vatican officials are making strategic phone calls to some of the world’s most far-flung dioceses, trying to verify that in each of the world’s inhabited time zones there will be an organized hour of eucharistic adoration coinciding with 5-6 p.m. Rome time Sunday, June 2.
The Vatican is trying to organize a global hour of prayer around the Eucharist “for the first time in the history of the Church,” said Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization, the office organizing events for the Year of Faith.
Pope Francis will preside over adoration and benediction in St. Peter’s Basilica beginning at 5 p.m. June 2, the date most dioceses in the world celebrate the feast of the Body and Blood of the Lord.
As part of the diocesan Year of Faith events, Bishop McManus will celebrate Mass at noon in St. Paul Cathedral in Worcester, followed by a eucharistic procession, according to Msgr. Robert K. Johnson, director of the diocesan Office for Divine Worship and rector of the cathedral. The eucharistic procession will be from the cathedral to St. Peter Church, 931 Main St.  There will be transportation back to the cathedral.
Also called Corpus Christi, the feast commemorates the institution of the sacrament of holy Communion.
Worcester’s Hispanic community usually celebrates the feast with an outdoor procession. Parishes in Webster also hold a public procession with the Blessed Sacrament on Corpus Christi Sunday.
This year the celebration in Webster will begin with  Mass at  11 a.m. in Sacred Heart of Jesus Church, 16 East Main St. After Mass there will be a eucharistic procession through the town with stops at four altars en route to St. Joseph’s Basilica on Whitcomb Street.
An announcement in St. Joseph’s bulletin asks residents in homes that border the processional route to decorate appropriately and to show proper reverence and respect as the Blessed Sacrament passes through their neighborhoods. The procession will conclude at the main church area of St. Joseph’s. All are encouraged to attend the Mass and participate in the procession, as “the Eucharist is an important facet of our spiritual lives,” the bulletin reminds people.
Archbishop Fisichella said the worldwide adoration would “witness to the profound piety found in the church for the Eucharist,” the mystery of the real presence of Christ’s body and blood, which unites and nourishes all Catholics.
While dioceses are free to organize the hour of prayer and adoration as they please, he said Pope Francis has chosen a specific prayer intention for each half hour of the service. The first, Archbishop Fisichella said, will be for the church and its mission of mercy; the second for the needs of those who suffer, including victims of war, the unemployed, the sick, immigrants and prisoners.
The Vatican Information Service further describes the intentions the pope has asked all to pray for.
The first is: “For the Church spread throughout the world and united today in the adoration of the Most Holy Eucharist as a sign of unity. May the Lord make her ever more obedient to hearing his Word in order to stand before the world ‘ever more beautiful, without stain or blemish, but holy and blameless.’ That through her faithful announcement, the Word that saves may still resonate as the bearer of mercy and may increase love to give full meaning to pain and suffering, giving back joy and serenity.”
Pope Francis’ second intention is: “For those around the world who still suffer slavery and who are victims of war, human trafficking, drug running, and slave labour. For the children and women who are suffering from every type of violence. May their silent scream for help be heard by a vigilant Church so that, gazing upon the crucified Christ, she may not forget the many brothers and sisters who are left at the mercy of violence. Also, for all those who find themselves in economically precarious situations, above all for the unemployed, the elderly, migrants, the homeless, prisoners, and those who experience marginalization. That the Church’s prayer and its active nearness give them comfort and assistance in hope and strength and courage in defending human dignity.”
To celebrate at the same time as the pope, Catholics in Mumbai would begin at 8:30 p.m., those in New York would begin at 11 a.m., in Seattle at 8 a.m., in Honolulu at 5 a.m. and at 1 a.m. June 3 in Sydney.
In at least two time zones –  Greenwich Mean Time minus 10 hours and GMT minus 2 hours –  there is little hope for participation, the archbishop said; both time zones cover vast areas of uninhabited ocean.