What is Eucharistic Adoration and what do we do?
As Catholic Christians, we know that Jesus is truly present-Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity-in Holy Communion. The Eucharist is the "source and summit of the Christian life" (Lumen Gentium 11) and Jesus invites us to return to Him again and again. Adoration is an extension of the moment at Mass where the priest elevates the Eucharist for us to "Behold the Lamb of God," allowing us to rest in His presence a while.
Because Our Lord is exposed in the monstrance like a king on his throne, we surround Him with great reverence and honor. There are moments, particularly at the beginning and end of Adoration, when we kneel. We crown Him with incense and with song--O Salutaris Hostia at the beginning, and both Tantum Ergo and the Divine Praises at the conclusion. All the prayers you'll need are provided in the back of our pew prayer booklets. During the silent times of Adoration, there is no right or wrong way to pray. All Our Lord asks is that you open your heart to Him and converse with Him as you do with your friends.
What is the Divine Office and what do we do?
Lauds (Morning Prayer) and Vespers (Evening Prayer) are two of the seven times of prayer within the Liturgy of the Hours (also called the Divine Office) prayed daily by priests, nuns and monks, and many lay Catholics around the world. This pattern of prayer is ancient and is filled with psalms-the heartbeat of the Church's prayer-along with readings, intentions, and hymns. By marking key hours of the day, it serves to extend the first part of Mass-the Liturgy of the Word-throughout the day and thus to sanctify all we do.
Like the Mass, there are certain times to sit, stand, bow, and to make the Sign of the Cross. To both recite and receive the prayers, we divide the parish into a left and right side and alternate stanzas of the psalms back and forth. Don't worry! Explanations and guidance are in the booklets we use. Just as one standing on the shore letting the tide slowly wash against you, give yourself time to get used to this beautiful and rich form of prayer. There is always a pearl waiting for us within it, as long as we seek it out. If you want to pray the Liturgy of the Hours at home, we recommend downloading either the iBrievary or DivineOffice app.