Parish Stories

Holy Name

Fall River, MA Diocese of Fall River


“But Lord I am not worthy. And I’m a bad listener.”

Nancy Leary

Within this chapel, there was a cacophony of silence so loud it was unnerving. I wanted to escape it. How could I sit with that terrible quiet blaring in my head for an entire hour, a half hour, five minutes? 

Unbearable. I found ways to fill the time, not so much to pray, but to drown out the silence: a rosary, then a chaplet. Then, a resolute effort to sit still for just two minutes. To sit and to listen; to simply be with Him. My mind wandered. “Be still,” He said. I tried. I sat. 

Quietly, awkwardly, like a first date, but with the One whom I’d known my whole life. With the One who gave me life. We both wanted it to work out. But Lord I am not worthy. And I’m a bad listener. 

He just kept looking at me and, I’m sure, nodded His head knowingly. One of those great, small gestures that commands your attention by its exquisite precision. 

I felt like the psalmist, desperate to find a place to conceal myself from His piercing, perfect gaze: 

Where can I go to hide from Your spirit? 
Where can I flee from Your presence? 
If I ascend to the heavens, You are there; 
if I take my rest in the netherworld, You are also there. 

If I say, “Surely the darkness will conceal me 
and the day around me will turn to night,” 
even the darkness is not dark to You; 
the night is as bright as the day, 
for to You darkness and light are the same. 

Lord, I am not worthy. And yet I know You think I am. 

If I rise on the wings of the dawn 
and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, 
even there your hand will guide me, 
and your right hand will hold me fast. 

How is it that my Lord should come to me, here, in this small, unremarkable room-become-sanctuary? How is it that I am brought to my knees before His mighty presence, inches from His heart, His saving grace, His fearsome love? Inches from the Word Made Flesh who dwells among us. 

I know I am not worthy, but hold me fast anyway. Be with me, my Lord, my Beloved. I strain to hear You speak, not in the wind, nor in the earthquake, nor in the fire, but in the still, small voice that cuts through the cacophony of silence: “Be with Me,” your plea. Only that. Simply, profoundly, “Be with Me.” Yes, my Beloved, my dove, my life. I will be with You. 

Lord I am not worthy, but here, in the silence of this chapel, before Your divine and awesome presence, Your soul-healing Word shall make me so.

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“I felt pure joy enter my heart”

Paula Rego

I was raised a Catholic, attended catechism, weekly Mass, and received the sacraments. Once I was confirmed, the religious education stopped, and I was left with many questions unanswered. This was the end of my formal Catholic education. 

My journey to Eucharistic adoration has been decades long. I began with a short ten minutes in the chapel, around 2008. Time increased as I became more aware but still was sporadic at best. 

My journey eventually led me to becoming a Eucharistic minister. It was a combination of the two pieces that led me to the love and devotion that I have today. I vividly remember the first Mass as a Eucharistic minister. I was amazed that I was allowed to have such an honor bestowed on me permitting me to participate to such a large degree. It felt like a dream. After taking the ciborium from the priest, I felt pure joy enter my heart. The host looked so beautiful, and I could not stop smiling. I was filled with such overwhelming joy, and I felt as if I were floating to my designated area to give Communion. 

I realized that I let the Lord guide me into what my path would be. I now know that the Lord will lead anyone to what they should do if they allow Him to enter their hearts. I have experienced many graces and small miracles through my time attending Eucharistic adoration. I advise all to start with an open heart, give ten minutes of their time, and allow the Lord to show them the way.

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“I’m forever and eternally grateful”

Maria Greco

Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament is my refuge. Jesus in the Eucharist is truly the anchor of my soul. The Lord’s love for me brings Him down to become bread, in order that I may commune with Him, abide with Him, adore Him. How many times have I come to Jesus downtrodden and sad, and an hour later I leave with a heart lighter than a feather?

Adoration for me is not simply a religious practice, but truly an encounter with the living God. Whether Jesus inspires me to be silent before Him, or encourages me to confide in Him, His faithful and steady presence remains before my eyes. His quiet and still presence attests to His humility; He listens to me, to the stirrings of my heart and the thoughts of my mind. Although it seems as though He is silent, He tells me everything and speaks to me through His Word and in the silence of my heart.

From adoration, I’ve come to understand that Jesus is my best friend and the faithful lover of my soul. Although I’m completely exposed to His immaculate gaze, He does not rebuke me, but rather His gaze is like healing rays that bind up and satisfy the aching heart.

Truly, I cannot express the holy amazement that I have for the Lord Jesus in the Eucharist, except that I’m forever and eternally grateful.

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Jesus is truly present. Jesus is always with you. Sit in his presence and open yourself up to his voice.

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