One of the main themes of WDTPRS is Save the Liturgy – Save the World.
I think that the way we, as a Church and as small communities within the Church, worship God in liturgical prayer, affects the whole world.
Celebrate Holy Mass well, the world is positively affected.
Celebrate Holy Mass poorly, the whole world is harmed.
I think the rite of Mass, rites of the sacraments, rites of our devotions make a difference to the world.
After long reflection, I think that the older form of these rites accomplishes these things more effectively.
And so the devotion we call the Forty Hours Prayer, originally intended precisely to ask God’s help to avert calamities through worship before the Blessed Sacrament solemnly exposed, it sorely needed today.
And it should be done correctly.
In Fortescue/O’Connell (p. 333) we read that the Clementine Instruction (which governed the Quarant’ore Prayer, Forty Hours) said:
A sign (e.g., a shield) or banner should be placed over the door of the church, bearing a symbol of the Blessed Sacrament, that people may see that the Forty Hours are being held there.
Naturally this comes from a place, Rome, where people as they walked about – which is most common – passed in front in numerous churches.
Here at Mater Ecclesiae this is what you find as you come to the main entrance to the church.
To the left of the door, but very prominently displayed, there is a shield with a symbol of the Blessed Sacrament.
Within, day and night, people are praying for you and for the world. The Blessed Sacrament is never left alone. A few people are there even in the middle of the night.
Later this afternoon, there will be the second sung Mass. The undersigned will be the celebrant.