At the very hour the Beaconsfield parish ended eight years and 56 days of perpetual adoration, St Jerome’s in Spearwood announced it would begin adoring the Blessed Sacrament seven days a week.
Adoration promoter and Glendalough parish priest Fr Doug Harris spoke to Spearwood Catholics at the 6pm vigil Mass on Saturday, 26 November, explaining the nature and benefits of adoration – both to individuals and the parish community.
Spearwood parish priest Fr Johnson Joseph Malayil CRS said he was happy to oblige when local Catholics approached him about beginning adoration.
He saw it as his priestly role and “privilege” to “encourage” them, he told The Record, and said heexpected the benefits of adoration would be reflected in the spiritual life of the community. He would be open to perpetual adoration, he said, if the people came forward to support it.
The co-ordinator of the adoration in Beaconsfield’s Christ the King parish, Joe Migro, said he was saddened and disappointed perpetual adoration at the parish had come to an end.
Mr Migro said he had been involved since the adoration began, punctuated in the past six years by illness, when his role had been covered by fellow volunteers Yvonne and Giovanni Viglante.
“We must thank Jesus and the parish and parishes for supporting it for eight years,” Mr Migro said. “Even in the early hours of the morning no-one was ever injured, assaulted or attacked. The Holy Spirit never failed us.”
The Beaconsfield parish council had voted to end perpetual adoration, citing practical challenges in its continuation. Parish priest Fr Liam Keating SMA said the end of the adoration in the parish was “sad” but that its perpetual character had been broken by gaps between adorers, particularly in the early morning, and “the burden of maintaining it had fallen on the few”.
Sometimes, he said, only one adorer could be found for each hour and not the two that had been mandated for the sake of security. In eight years and 56 days of perpetual adoration at Beaconsfield, some 300 volunteers clocked up more than 71,000 hours of adoration.
Fr Harris said he had seen individuals grow in virtue and holiness through adoration as well as witnessing corporate benefits in his own parish of St Bernadette’s in Glendalough.
Daily Mass attendance had grown from about 10 people to between 60 and 80, he said.
St Jerome Parish, Spearwood will have adoration seven days a week, 6am to 11pm and throughout the night on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The parish invites anyone who wishes to join the roster to callthe parish office on 9418 1229.