God continues to call us to deeper union with him in prayer, particularly during this time of crisis and suffering in the Church. We keep foremost in our prayers the victims of abuse by members of the Church.
Eucharistic adoration is an invitation to come before the Lord, who is Love Made Visible, to praise, adore and glorify him, and to listen to him speak to the depths of our own hearts.
We live in an age of noise and we need these moments of prayer, silence and adoration to remind us of God’s love, mercy and presence in our lives and in our world. Satan, the father of lies, is always seeking ways to divide and distract us from keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, and from knowing his presence in our lives.
We can never underestimate the importance of coming before the Lord in Eucharistic adoration — to be united with him who calls us to eternal life — so that we do not become distracted from the reality of God’s infinite love for us. It was for this reason that I wrote my pastoral letter, Love Made Visible, on Holy Thursday in 2017.
That year — 2017 — was also the year in which the Diocese of Lincoln joined the universal Church in honoring the 100th anniversary of the apparitions of Our Lady of Fatima. At Fatima, Mary begged us to pray, sacrifice, and fast in reparation for sin for peace and for the conversion of the world. She asked us in a particular way to pray for marriage and the family; that God might be at the center of every heart and home.
Last September I visited with Father James Kelleher of the Society of Our Lady of the Trinity, who has helped organize Rosary Crusades across the country. I knew that a Eucharistic Family Rosary Crusade could be a great opportunity of grace for the Diocese of Lincoln. The sacred scriptures tell us that the Blessed Virgin Mary is the one who crushes the head of Satan (Gen. 3:15). In order to fight this spiritual battle for the good of the family and for the good of our diocese, Father Kelleher helped us form a committee of laypersons to lead a Eucharistic Family Rosary Crusade in order to promote the family Rosary and increase Eucharistic Adoration in our diocese.
As I have done the past few years, I renewed the Consecration of our diocese to the Blessed Virgin Mary at the annual Marian Mass Sept. 12.
I invite you to join me Sept. 17, for a “Global Living Rosary” at St. Joseph Church in Lincoln at 7 p.m. You are also invited to a similar event in Wahoo at St. Wenceslaus Church Oct. 9, at 7 p.m.
Finally, there will be a Eucharistic procession around the State Capitol Building in Lincoln on Sunday, Nov. 4, at 3 p.m.
I recognize now how providential it was that the anniversary of Fatima, the publication of my pastoral letter on the Eucharist and the inauguration of the Eucharistic Family Rosary Crusade occurred a little over a year ago. I know the Lord, in his mercy, has been preparing us for a time of great trial and purification. He calls us more than ever to depend on him and on his mother.
Prayer may seem to be a simple reply to great suffering, evil, and trials of this current crisis, but in reality it is the most profound reply and the best remedy. We come to know the love of God in prayer, and see clearly how to live according to his will.
As Cardinal Arinze has said, “Personal prayer helps to make our religion more genuine, more personal, more deeply rooted. It favors our union with God. It comes to our aid in the little pinpricks of daily life as well as in temptations and trials which can never be totally excluded during our earthly pilgrimage.”
Through the Rosary of Our Lady, may the Lord draw us into deeper union with his Eucharistic heart.