For years, I wondered who I am talking to. The Adoration Chapel heard all the deepest, most sincere, most significant prayers I said in life. And all those answered prayers were uttered without me knowing what’s on the other side of the glass. I can remember being doubtful if there’s really something there. Should I go inside? How to behave, with shoes on or without? Are there prayers or prerequisites before going inside? Why are there not so many people going in? But why are people going inside the adoration chapel even without Holy Mass ongoing? Why are the people there pray like their life depended on it?
Now, I serve on the Saturday, 7am Mass. This is the only ordinary schedule when I fit in because I’m 2 hours away from the Cathedral from Mondays-Fridays. After this, it’s when the Exposition of the Holy Sacrament is routinely done.
It’s Him behind those glass! And it suddenly dawned on me why what I then called fate plays favorite on me when I “wish” in that place. It’s like a one-on-one session with Him. An exclusive interview that’s a two-seat distance where you could almost touch Him, almost see Him.
What I know now are collaborations of various homilies, processions, catechism and reflections I hear and read.
What I still don’t know are far greater that what has been revealed to me so far and I’m excited to find out. That excitement’s coupled with acceptance that I might exhaust this lifetime not knowing everything but I’ll still try. I’m gonna spend everyday walking that path to knowing Him in everything tangible and unseen. Anyway, this physical world we live in is not His kingdom. Earth is too small to contain all the might of his reign. Better look for Him with heart and eyes of faith instead of just physical eyes wide open.
I spent months clueless on what is being sung during Exposition. Because I’m in a ministry now, the more I learn, the more I discover that there are tons more to learn. Song is in Latin and though I’m interested in learning Latin, it’s no easy feat.
O SALUTARIS Hostia
Quae caeli pandis ostium.
Bella premunt hostilia;
Da robur, fer auxilium
Uni trinoque Domino
Sit sempiterna gloria:
Qui vitam sine termino,
Nobis donet in patria.
O SAVING Victim opening wide
The gate of heaven to all below.
Our foes press on from every side;
Thine aid supply, Thy strength bestow.
To Thy great name be endless praise
Immortal Godhead, One in Three;
Oh, grant us endless length of days,
In our true native land with Thee.
Salutaris Hostia is from the last two verses of Verbum Supernum, one of the five Eucharistic Hymns written by St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) at the request of Pope Urban IV (1261-1264) when the Pope first instituted the Feast of Corpus Christi in 1264.(Source: http://www.preces-latinae.org/thesaurus/Euch/OSalutaris.html)
After the procession from the altar to the Adoration Chapel, while people led by the priest are still kneeling, this prayer will be said (thrice) followed by Our Father and/or Hail Mary and/or Glory Be or the priest’s own:
O Sacrament most Holy,
O Sacrament Divine,
All praise and all thanksgiving,
Be every moment Thine.
This year, I’m glad to have joined the procession for Corpus Christi and Christ the King, the two times we conduct procession not for the Holy Virgin Mary nor saints but for the Christ, the King Himself. Pray and hope we recognize His kingship and companionship as we walk the streets of life.