<p><button class=”alert button expanded large” type=”button”>Live (french) from the Chapel of the Apparitions in Paray-le-Monial – thursday 9 Pm)</button></p>
For Maundy Thursday, at the Apparitions Chapel, in Paray le Monial
The Holy Hour, as it is celebrated at the Apparitions Chapel in the evening of Maundy Thursday, does not happen like for the other Holy Hours. There is no exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. The faithful gather around the Altar of Rest the Holy Species that have been consacrated during the Celebration of the « Last Supper ». There are suggested hymns or prayers. One reads the Gospel of st John, chapter 17, called the « priestly prayer of Christ ». This prayer addressed to his Father was said, in fact, between the « Last Supper » (John 13) and his Agony in Gethsemane, told by the other Gospels.
This prayer that Our Lord raises towards his Father and our Father, springs from his Heart, burning with love. The usage in theology would undoubtedly state that at this Hour, we were each of us mysteriously present in the Thought and Heart of Jesus and that his words were «aiming » at us very personally. For those who know Paray-le-Monial fairly well, you would do well to remember the beautiful mosaics on the Tabernacle of the Chapel of La Colombiere, which could be considered as an illustration of this priestly prayer of Christ. One can see indeed Jesus with his eyes raised towards Heaven, who presents his Sacred Heart to the Father in opened hands. And he offers himself, he offers to us, he offers the world to the Father.
1- After Jesus finished saying this, he looked up to Heaven and said, « Father, the hourhas come. Give glory to your Son, so that the Son may give glory to you. For you gave him authority over all humanity, so that he might give eternal life to all those you gave him. And eternal life means knowing you, the only true God, and knowing Jesus Christ, whom you sent. I have shown you glory on earth . I have finished the work you gave me to do. Father ! Give me glory in your presence now, the same glory I had with you before the word was made. « I have made you known to those you gave me out of the world. They belonged to you, and you gave them to me. They have obeyed your word, and now they know that everything you gave me comes from you. I gave them the message that you gave me, and they received it ; they know that it is true that I came from you, and they believe that you sent me. « I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those you gave me, for they belong to you . All I have is yours, and all I have is mine ; and my glory is shown through them. » (John 17, 1-10)
II- « And now I am coming to you ; I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world. Holy Father ! Keep them safe by the power of your name, the name you gave me, so that they may be one just as you and I are one. While I was with them, I kept them safe by the power of your name, the name you gave me. I protected them, and not one of them was lost, except the man who was bound to be lost – so that the Scripture might come true. And now I am coming to you, and I say these things in the world so that they might have my joy in their hearts in all its fullness. I gave them your message and the world hated them, because they do not belong to the world. I do not ask you to take them out of the world, but I do ask you to keep them safe from the evil one. Just as I do not belong to the world, they do not belong to the world.Dedicate them to yourself by means of the truth ; your word is truth. I sent them into the world, just as you sent me into the world. And for their sake, I dedicate myself to you, in order that they too, may be truly dedicated to you. » (John 17, 11-19)
3-I pray not only for them but also for those who believe in me because of their message. I pray that they may all be one. Father ! May they be in us, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they be one so that the world will believe that you sent me. I gave them the same glory you gave me, so that they may be one, just as you and I are one. I in them and you in me, so that they may be completely one, in order that the world may know that you sent me and that you love them as you love me. » « Father ! You have given them to me, and I want them to be with me where I am, so that they may see my glory, the glory you gave me ; for you loved me before the world was made. Righteous Father ! The world does not know you, but I know you, and these know that you sent me. I made you known to them, and I will continue to do so, in order that the love you have for me may be in them, and so that I also may be in them. » (John 17 , 20-26)
There is no blessing with the Blessed Sacrament. The silent prayer may, in front of the Altar of Rest,lasts to midnight. It might be good at this time to meditate in the silence of our heart, the story of the Agony of Our Lord in Gethsemane. We give you here the version according to the Gospel of st Matthew.
Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, « Sit here while I go over there to pray. » He took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee. Grief and anguish came over him, and he said to them, « The sorrow in my heart is so great that it almost crushes me. Stay here and keep watch with me. » He went a little farther on, threw himself face downwards on the ground, and prayed, « My Father, if it is possible, take this cup of suffering from me ! Yet not what I want, but what you want. » Then he returned to the three disciples and found them asleep ; and he said to Peter, « How is it that you three were not able to keep watch with me even for one hour , Keep watch and pray that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. » Once more Jesus went away and prayed, « My Father, if this cup of suffering cannot be taken away unless I drink it, your will be done. » He returned once more and found the disciples asleep ; they could not keep their eyes open. Again Jesus left them, went away, and prayed the third time, saying the same words. Then he returned to the disciples and said, « Are you still sleeping and resting ? Look ! The hour has come for the Son of Man to be handed over to the power of sinners. Get up, let us go. Look, here is the man who is betraying me ! » (Matthew 26, 36-46)
At midnight, the priest puts the Holy Species in the Tabernacle planned to this effect ; The assembly leaves the Chapel in silence.
For the other weeks of this month, we suggest you rest on this beautiful prayer of st John, and to see what connotation comes to your mind before the Passion and after the Resurrection. You can complement it with hymns appropriate to the liturgical period :
Holy Week (Thursday, April 2nd), you will be able to take as an introduction :
THE LAMB THAT WAS SLAIN
Words and music : B. Suijkerbuijk N°19-08-EN
The Lamb that was slain is worthy of all praise ;
To Him glory and honour, pow’r and might belong.
To Him be the majesty and the royal crown,
For all ages, for ever, Amen,
For all ages, for ever, Amen !
Other possible hymns : En toi, ma confiance. Regarde et réponds-moi. O Dieu Saint… (In you, my trust. Look and answer me. O Holy God…)
And for the octave (April 16th) and the eastertide (April 23rd) :
TO YOU, HONOUR AND GLORY
Words and music : Emmanuel Community (E. Baranger) N°12-02-EN
Ch. To You, honour and glory,
To You, blessing and power.
To You, wisdom and strength,
O God, for all time !
Other possible hymn :
I HAVE CHOSEN YOU
Words and music : Emmanuel Community (C. Lorenzi) N°14-16-EN
Sanctuaire du Sacré-Coeur - Place du Cardinal Perraud 71600 Paray-le-Monial - www.sacrecoeur-paray.org
Place du Cardinal Perraud
Tel: +33 (0)3 85 81 56 00