Reservation – the act of keeping back, withholding or setting apart.
Adoration – the act of paying honor, as to a divine being; worship
The St. Isidore Parish dream to build a Perpetual Adoration Chapel became Phase III of our Honoring Our Roots, Cultivating Our Future capital campaign.
One may well ask, “Isn’t what we have now good enough?” The answer appears to be that it depends upon what one wants to do. The Roman Catholic Church, like all large effective organizations has rules and definitions that cover nearly every circumstance. The key word here is ‘perpetual’.
The General Instruction of the Roman Missal regarding The Place for the Reservation of the Most Holy Eucharist states:
In accordance with the structure of each church and legitimate local customs, the Most Blessed Sacrament should be reserved in a tabernacle in a part of the church that is truly noble, prominent, conspicuous, worthily decorated, and suitable for prayer.
The tabernacle should usually be the only one, be irremovable, be made of solid and inviolable material that is not transparent, and be locked in such a way that the danger of profanation is prevented to the greatest extent possible.
Consequently, it is preferable that the tabernacle be located, according to the judgment of the Diocesan Bishop:
- Either in the sanctuary, apart from the altar of celebration, in an appropriate form and place, not excluding its being positioned on an old altar no longer used for celebration;
- or, even in some chapel suitable for the private adoration and prayer of the faithful and organically connected to the church and readily noticeable by the Christian faithful.
The Roman Ritual: Holy Communion and Worship of the Eucharist outside Mass defines perpetual Eucharistic adoration in two ways:
- Prayer before the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle;
- or, Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament exposed in the ciborium or monstrance.
The Ritual’s further guidelines state:
If for some good reason perpetual exposition must take place in a parish church, it should be in a chapel distinct from the body of the church so as not to interfere with the normal activities of the parish or its daily liturgical celebrations.
When Mass is celebrated in a chapel where the Blessed Sacrament is exposed, the Eucharist must be replaced in the tabernacle before the celebration of Mass begins.
Under no circumstances may perpetual exposition take place during the Easter Triduum. There should always be a sufficient number of people present for Eucharistic adoration before the Blessed Sacrament exposed. Every effort should be made to ensure that there should be at least two people present. There must absolutely never be periods when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed and there is no one present for adoration. It may prove necessary to expose the Blessed Sacrament for adoration only at stated times when members of the faithful are present.
In short, you can adore the Blessed Sacrament in the Reservation Chapel, but if you want to do it perpetually, (around the clock, every day) you need a special place.
Phase III of our Honoring Our Roots, Cultivating Our Future campaign will make it possible for a Perpetual Adoration Chapel to be built at St. Isidore. Info can be found at the display in the Church narthex.