This weekend, Sunday 22nd November the 40 Hours of adoration will take place in St Columb’s Church beginning on the Feast of Christ the King.
The Feast of Christ the King, also called Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, festival celebrated in the Church in honour of Jesus Christ as lord over all creation. Essentially a magnification of the Feast of the Ascension, it was established by Pope Pius XI in 1925.
Originally, it was celebrated on the last Sunday in October, but in the revised liturgical calendar promulgated by Pope Paul VI in 1969 it was moved to the last Sunday of Ordinary Time (immediately preceding Advent), where its theme of Christ’s dominion made it a fitting end to the liturgical year.
The 40 Hours will begin after 12:30 Mass on Sunday and continue until just before the 6:00pm Mass. The 40 Hours Devotion will continue after the 10:00am Mass on Monday until the 7:30pm Mass. We would encourage everyone to come and pray for their loved ones and to spend time before the Blessed Sacrament.
The Forty Hours Devotion is a special forty-hour period of continuous prayer made before the Blessed Sacrament in solemn exposition. Of course, the focus of this devotion is on the Holy Eucharist. As Catholics, the words of our Lord burn in our hearts: “I myself am the living bread come down from Heaven. If anyone eats this bread, He shall live forever; the bread I will give is my flesh for the life of the world” (John 6:51).
Affirming our belief in the real presence of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, the Vatican Council II taught that the Holy Eucharist is “the source and summit of the Christian life” (Lumen Gentium, #11).