"The Catholic Church has always offered and still offers to the sacrament of the Eucharist the cult of adoration, not only during Mass, but also outside of it, reserving the consecrated hosts with the utmost care, exposing them to the solemn veneration of the faithful, and carrying them in procession" (Catechism of the Catholic Church 1378).
This Sunday, St. Gertrude High School Youth Ministry will have its first Adoration Night of the year. The video highlights the power of the exposed Eucharist, and the CCC points to the tradition of Eucharistic Adoration in the Church. Adoration is, in short, an extension of the Mass. That which we adore, we receive, we eat.
I'd like to point out two simple things to help with our understanding of Adoration:
- Genesis 2:9 says, "And out of the ground the Lord God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight and good for food." Notice the syntax here. The verse first says the tree and fruit of the tree is pleasant to the sight. It is worthy of being adored. It is beautiful to behold. The verse follows immediately with "and good for food." That which is adored is good to eat, it gives us life. These two statements go hand-in-hand.
- I will now attempt an Adoration analogy to help it make further sense. Without fail, Thanksgiving happens every year (and the Lions lose). On that day, I stand around a table heaping with beautifully delicious-looking food and pray with my family (while drooling and seriously thinking about drinking the gravy!). That time of prayer is a time of adoration of, and deep gratitude for, what I am about to receive. Eucharistic Adoration is much the same. We look at the beauty of the Bread of Life and long to partake in the Banquet.