Greetings dearest Sisters... and friends of God...
Long remembered is the glow in the countenance of a friend that was asked to consider Seven Sisters. Her swift and fitting response was, "Oh, yes, yes ... much is accomplished before our Eucharistic Lord!"
Surely we can, and should, enter the secret place of our own heart and repose in the contemplation of God. But God Himself has provided another dwelling place for us - the light of His real Presence! My friend understands this, and further, understands that this is an ideal environs to lift the soul and concerns of our earthly Shepherds.
How splendid of the Holy Spirit to inspire this Apostolate to have its workings in the quiet and rich habitation of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. ...in quietness and trust is your strength. - Isaiah 30:15
SEVEN REASONS (that I learned from YOU!) of how we are benefiting from our prayers offered intentionally before the Blessed Sacrament:
1) Growth in love. Considering another greater than ourselves is God's commandment and design for us to grow in love. "Out of love, place yourselves at one another's service" (Gal 5:13).
2) Praying for the least among us. Prayer of St Teresa of Calcutta (echoing Our Lord) "Whatever you did unto one of the least, you did unto Me." The priest has accepted the position of servant to all. Our prayers help him to fulfill his call and we benefit in having a priest serve us who is embracing and witnessing his humble God-given call and holy place of service.
3) Docility in prayer. Putting ourselves in an environment of silence helps form our prayers. The Holy Spirit is our ever-ready help and Teacher par excellence. "Silence is the law of the divine plans. ... We listen in silence; man enters into a silence that is God. ... Silence is not an absence. On the contrary, it is the manifestation of a presence, the most intense of all presences. ... For silence is where God dwells. He drapes Himself in silence. ... All that is from God makes no noise. Nothing is sudden, everything is delicate, pure and silent." - Robert Cardinal Sarah, The Power of Silence Against the Dictatorship of Noise, 2017 (A must read!).
4) Heart wholeness and holiness. The priest benefits, we benefit. He is made to understand himself more truly and live it, and we the same. Beatitude upon beatitude. "In every Christian life there is a sacred domain of nascent growth in which dwells Christ - a domain in which we are more firmly rooted than we are in our own. There He works and grows, takes possession of our being, draws our strength toward Himself, penetrates our thoughts and volition, and sways our emotions and sentiments, so that the word of the Apostle comes true: 'It is now no longer I that live, but Christ lives in me' (Gal 2:20). " - Msgr Romano Guardini, The Rosary of our Lady
5) Every sacrifice has merit. Over and again you bear witness to the interior joy and benefit of keeping faithful to your committed day - even in the face of struggles and temptations to do otherwise. "One small act of obedience to God can sometimes cause us to make more progress spiritually than years of effort according to our own plans. Fidelity to small graces draws down bigger ones." - Fr Jacques Philippe, In the School of the Holy Spirit
6) Affecting others. The sacrifice of these regular prayers are being noticed and affecting Seven Sisters families and even workplaces. The proverbial pebble in the water affects many (in the seen and unseen). Some connect their regular Holy Hours to recognizing that peace is spilling over into their home environs and others tell of more boldness of witness in the workplace. Some have been inspired to encourage others to learn docility of prayer before the Blessed Sacrament. Some have sensed their call to the Apostolate through your generous witness.
7) Unity with other intercessors: in our group, in the diocese, in the world. In 2010 when I began offering a Holy Hour for Fr Johnson, there was no Seven Sisters. There was one person quietly and happily praying. Not until the nudge arrived and others joined alongside in 2011 did this become a reality of seven working together. Many of you speak of special sensed graces that unite us as intercessors with our individual groups and even the Body of Christ at large. We need each other and the fidelity of each otherthat our prayers may be seamless. Our concerted prayers bring a perception of unity, and unity itself is sensed to be realized through our prayers. May God's generous Will and Way be esteemed!
My gratitude joins yours as we together seek our Eucharistic Lord and consider the benefits! Each of us can individually and together proclaim:
You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with JOY in your PRESENCE,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand. - Psalm 16:11 (my emphasis)
United in prayer and mission -
that our prayers may find the heart of every bishop and priest
... eternal gratitude as you each remember to offer a wee Hail Mary for me every day.... Pray that I will not 'spoil the beautiful work that God has entrusted...' (St Mother Teresa of Calcutta)