Adoration is like Christmas every day of the year

Larry Smith

I had a conversation recently that went in a direction I didn’t expect. It was with a business executive who wasn’t Catholic and had little apparent interest in the Catholic faith. But as we spoke, it occurred to me to invite my new friend to visit an adoration chapel.

What would happen there? I spoke of my own experience.

You let God fill your mind with whatever He wants. And you may not even know that He’s talking to you. You may not recognize a single thing from God in that moment. But throughout the day, He’s going to have other people talk to you. And it is going to blow you away. You’ll think, where did that come from? And you’re going to know: it could only have come from God. And that’s what you need to know: not your ways but God’s ways. God’s ways are different from our ways.

It doesn’t matter where you come from, who you’re married to, what your belief system is. You’re going to go into adoration and you’re going to feel God’s presence in a way you’ve never felt it before — whether you believe it or not. Because He’s there, whether you like it or not.

My friend expressed interest in going, so I offered the address of an adoration chapel and how to get in. Our conversation was a continual reduction of barriers.

You see, our job as Catholics is to introduce people to Jesus Christ. Then it’s up to them and Jesus what they do with that relationship.

Another person I know walked into an adoration chapel for the first time, sat down and just started crying. And couldn’t stop crying because that person had never felt that kind of love before.

It’s a simple invitation: come meet Jesus Christ. He’s in this chapel. Come sit and be loved for as long as you want to be loved. Come be in the presence of God. He’ll wrap his arms around you and love you in a way you’ve never experienced.

I would compare adoration to confession. When I walk into adoration, it’s like walking out of confession. I feel rejuvenated, forgiven, loved.

There are many guides for praying in adoration before the Blessed Sacrament, or in making a Holy Hour. Here’s my method: beg the Lord for mercy. Ask Him for what you want. Thank him for what you have. Then be quiet and listen.

Spend time with Our Lord in adoration, then share that experience with others. Invite them to experience the gift of Jesus Christ. It’s like Christmas every day of the year.

Larry Smith is the president and CEO of Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Denver. Visit online at ccdenver.org or call 303-742-0828 to learn more, volunteer or make a donation.

COMING UP: Building a culture of life in Colorado

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There’s no reason for a woman to have an abortion in Colorado, which has been legal for decades. And there’s no reason for anyone to take their own life through physician-assisted suicide, which was approved by Colorado voters as Proposition 106 on Nov. 8.

Just because something is legal doesn’t make it right. And just because you have that choice doesn’t mean you should choose it.

Abortion and euthanasia are two of the “non-negotiables” that Catholics must never endorse or participate in. Not only do we stand against the culture of death, no matter what, but we are called by Our Lord Jesus Christ to defend life from conception to natural death.

So if you, or someone you know, is contemplating abortion or considering euthanasia, Catholic Charities stands ready to help. We will care for those individuals in crisis, or find help for them.

I ask that you join us through prayer, volunteerism and financial support. A great way to do that is to schedule a donation to Catholic Charities at coloradogives.org/ccdenver in advance of Colorado Gives Day on Tuesday, Dec. 6.

The only way to defeat the culture of death is to be a people of life. That’s why Catholic Charities is building a continuum of care throughout northern Colorado. To see all that we’re doing to serve children and vulnerable people of all ages, go to our website (ccdenver.org) and also sign up for our Charity Works publication.

For a woman experiencing an unintended pregnancy, Catholic Charities not only provides counseling and compassion, we provide her with medical care through Marisol Health (marisolhealth.com) before and after the birth of her child. We can also meet needs for diapers, formula and baby clothes, as well as provide shelter, educational opportunities and job training. We can provide everything that an expectant mother needs not only to give life to her child, but to have a life with her child.

Those at the end of life should know about Divine Mercy Supportive Care (dmsci.org), a Colorado-based Catholic non-profit agency that provides palliative and hospice care that is “always consistent with the teachings of the Catholic Church,” while “available for persons of any religious belief.” They provide people at the end of life with loving, merciful and compassionate care. Everyone facing end-of-life decisions deserves the dignity that God gave them to live through to the natural end.

The continuum of care from conception to natural death is not about being Catholic, it’s about being human. We care for everyone not because they’re Catholic, but because we’re Catholic. The Catholic Church has always served the most vulnerable in the spirit of the Good Samaritan.

To repeat, there’s no reason to take the life of a child in the womb through abortion, or for anyone to take their own life through euthanasia. Charity is really about helping those who need it most. If you are in a desperate situation, you may think that there’s no one to take care of you. Or that you can’t handle the pain. Or that you’re totally alone.

We will take care of you. When you’ve lost hope, call us. We’re the hope in Jesus Christ.