Is this correct? While Mass is said, the Congregation responds. During Benediction and Adoration the Congregation isn’t responding that way.
Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament are different from the mass. There is more flexibility in Exposition and Benediction as to what the congregation might do. They could adore silently. They could pray together. They could sing hymns.
Exposition outside of Mass
After the people have assembled, a song may be sung while the presider comes to the altar. The
presider or another ordained minister puts on a humeral veil and brings the Blessed Sacrament
from the place of reservation. He may be accompanied by altar servers or the faithful with lighted
candles. The ciborium or monstrance is placed on the table of the altar which is covered with a
cloth. (When the altar of exposition is also the place of eucharistic reservation, the minister opens
the tabernacle and genuflects before removing the Blessed Sacrament.) For exposition in the
monstrance, incense is used. For exposition in the ciborium, incense may be used. When incense
is used, the censer bearer, holding the incense boat, goes to the presider. The presider puts incense
into the censer. Kneeling before the Blessed Sacrament, he takes the censer and incenses the
Blessed Sacrament. After a period of silent prayer, he rises, genuflects and departs.
During the exposition there should be prayers, songs and readings to direct the attention of
the faithful to the worship of Christ the Lord. To encourage a prayerful spirit, there should
be readings from Sacred Scripture with a homily or brief exhortations to develop a better
understanding of the eucharistic mystery. It is also desirable for the people to respond to the
word of God by singing and to spend some periods of time in sacred silence.
Toward the end of the exposition the presider goes to the altar, genuflects and kneels. Then a hymn
or other eucharistic song is sung. Meanwhile the presider places incense into the censer and while
kneeling, incenses the Blessed Sacrament. Then the presider rises and sings or says one of the required
prayers (Cf. attached page). After the prayer the presider puts on the humeral veil, goes to the Blessed
Sacrament, genuflects, and takes the monstrance or ciborium with both hands covered by the veil.
Facing the people he makes the sign of the cross over them with the monstrance or ciborium, in silence.
(the return of the Blessed Sacrament to the tabernacle)
After the blessing, the presider may replace the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle, genuflect and
remove the humeral veil; or he may place the monstrance or ciborium back on the altar, genuflect and
remove the humeral veil either to have another minister replace the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle
or to pray the Divine Praises (optional) after which the presider himself or another minister replaces the
Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle. The people may sing a concluding song as the presider leaves.
I go to Benediction and Adoration frequently.
During Adoration, there really isn’t any ceremony and response as people are silently adoring. There may be a prayer service or holy hour held in the Adoration chapel, and usually there are responses because people have come specifically to join the prayer hour, but if someone had come just to be in the presence of the Lord in exposition, he isn’t required to join the prayers.
For Benediction, the priest will usually invite whoever is sitting there to join in the prayers and so respond. If they don’t do so, it may be that they don’t know the prayers or know where they are in the Missal. They also are not required to join, although it’s considered polite to join in if you know the prayers.
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