Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament -- Etiquette and Norms


#1

Are there any hard and fast rules (or at least long standing traditions) or etiquette for posture, etc., when in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament?

Specifically, I have a few questions:

  1. I see people who back out of the room so they do not turn their back on Christ. Is this necessary?

  2. How should I enter and leave the room?


#2

To answer question number one, you do not need to do this, either the people are a bit scrupulous or are very reverent. Though do remember you are physically in the presence of Jesus so treat it like you are. Being very reverent is the key, generally if other people are in the same room as the Blessed Sacrament then you should not do much praying out loud since they might want silence, though whispering would be fine. And again the emphasis is that Jesus is in the room so your focus should be on him, I would turn my phone or anything else off and get rid of any distractions. As for question number two, you would do the same as when you enter mass, genuflect on your right knee and make the sign of the cross. You do the same when you leave too. There really are not any "Rules" for simple adoration when Jesus is present in a Tabernacle and not exposed. Eucharistic Exposition has some rules such as who may expose the Eucharist and such, but the only big rule with that is you must not leave the Eucharist exposed without anyone with it.

Take a look at this, though it is more for Exposition, Benediction, and Congresses.
ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDWSACRA.htm


#3

Silence.
Utter reverence and respect.
And more silence.


#4

The main rule is the rule of silence.
In my parish, everybody is required to remove shoes before entering the Adoration Chapel. As scripture says, “This is Holy ground.” The new chapel even has a special place for people to place their footwear.
You may see some women wearing chapel veils or other head covering, although this is not required. An individual might choose to bring a small devotional book to read. Sit or kneel.
“Be still and know that I am God.” Try not to move around too much.


#5

[quote="yellow8yellowM, post:1, topic:328773"]
Are there any hard and fast rules (or at least long standing traditions) or etiquette for posture, etc., when in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament?

Specifically, I have a few questions:

  1. How should I enter and leave the room?

[/quote]

The same way you would a church. Christ is truly present, it is a place of prayer.

[quote="yellow8yellowM, post:1, topic:328773"]

  1. I see people who back out of the room so they do not turn their back on Christ. Is this necessary?

[/quote]

How odd, do they leave their church the same way on Sunday Morning??? :shrug:


#6

It's probable that the practice of not turning your back to the Eucharist comes from the protocol of showing a king or other royal person respect and obeisance through a similar practice. Generally, to leave the "royal presence," a person would back away a few (or several) steps before turning to leave, although some who wished to show deep respect or homage would not turn their back toward the royal person at all while in their field of vision.

If the room or area for Adoration is small, I would agree that one should avoid turning your back to the Eucharist if at all possible, out of respect and as a reminder that He is our King and the focus of the room (and, hopefully, our lives).

When leaving the church after Mass, we still genuflect toward the Tabernacle, but we usually aren't within that smaller, closer area, so it's not seen as an insult or show of disrespect to turn and leave afterward--not to mention, it would be rather impractical to walk backward the whole way, especially in very large churches! ;)

While I appreciate the reasons for the practice, and think the reverence shown for the Eucharist is a good thing, I also don't think it's absolutely necessary to do all of this in order to show respect and homage to Our Lord. Geneflecting upon entering, crossing the room, and leaving, is sufficient, IMHO.

HTH!


#7

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