Just in time for Corpus Christi comes this piece in America:
Eucharistic adoration—a practice with roots in the medieval church—is now an integral part of ministry to young Catholics.
It has become a staple of youth retreats and campus ministry activities, pulling young Catholics away from wired-in connections to quiet reflection in front of the exposed Eucharist.
Kimberly Belcher, a professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame, studied students at three Midwestern Catholic campuses who regularly engaged in eucharistic adoration. She found that much of its appeal on campus is due to the particular stresses placed on college students.
College students pursuing a prayer life, she said, often find it difficult to focus amid the racket of dorm life. Eucharistic adoration, she said, “sets aside the time and space when they will not be interrupted.”
In a generation tuned in to social media, the absence of connection to the world is, conversely, at the heart of the appeal of eucharistic adoration, according to Michael St. Pierre, executive director of the Catholic Campus Ministry Association.
“There is a lot of silence and a total absence of technology,” he said.
… Dr. Belcher noted that eucharistic devotions were expected to fade away after the liturgical reforms of the Second Vatican Council put a focus on participation in the Mass. But then they staged a comeback, promoted vigorously in the 1990s by St. John Paul II, and have remained a fixture of youth and young adult ministry.
For Lauren Garger, a graduating senior at Franciscan University of Steubenville, eucharistic adoration provides “an immediate sense of peace. You realize it is more than a piece of bread. It is Jesus.”
The experience, she said, offers “more intimacy, a heart-to-heart relationship with Jesus.” On the Steubenville campus, eucharistic adoration is available 24/7 during the academic year. It also has a social justice dimension: a eucharistic procession to the town of Steubenville last year included a plea for unity in the church and nation and an end to racism.
Meanwhile, New York City is about to get its first perpetual adoration chapel:
A perpetual adoration chapel slated to open next spring will bring spiritual healing and revitalization to Manhattan, according to a Dominican priest overseeing the project.
“This is really a project of the Holy Spirit. There’s so many times when it’s seemed like we’re running into snags and they just work themselves out,” Fr. Boniface Endorf, a Dominican friar and pastor of St. Joseph’s parish in Greenwich Village, Manhattan, told CNA.
“It’s clear the Holy Spirit is a driving force, and I think this will be a spiritual gamechanger for Greenwich Village and the city of New York, to have a place where you can encounter Jesus Christ.”
Manhattan, one of the most densely populated and influential areas of the entire U.S., currently lacks a perpetual adoration chapel. Last year, Timothy Cardinal Dolan of New York asked Fr. Endorf if his parish would be willing to take on the challenge of opening one.
The new chapel will be constructed in a basement space that the parish is currently using for storage. At present the project is in its last stage of fundraising, with construction set to begin in early fall. The goal is to have the chapel open by Easter 2022.
Fr. Endorf’s catchphrase for the project is “The city that never sleeps deserves a chapel that never closes.”