For the second year in a row, the Congregation of Holy Cross throughout the world came together for 40 Hours of Eucharistic Adoration to mark the feast day of its beloved founder, Blessed Basile Moreau. The devotion was part of the Congregation’s ongoing celebrations of the 150th Anniversary of the entry of Blessed Basile Moreau into eternal life.
This year there was participation from every jurisdiction of the Congregation in the 40 Hours Devotion. Almost 100 local communities and apostolates officially signed up, from formation houses and retirement communities to schools and parishes.
As in 2023, the 40 Hours were officially opened by the Shrine of Blessed Basile Moreau at Notre-Dame de Sainte-Croix Church in Le Mans, France, at 8:30 pm local time on Friday, January 19. Fr. Joseph Gonsalvez, C.S.C., Assistant Rector and Assistant Pastor, led the hour of Adoration.
The Holy Cross Generalate in Rome gathered as a community at the same time for an hour of Adoration, led by Fr. Thomas Gomes, C.S.C., a sociology student living at the Generalate. The Generalate community also closed the 40-Hour Devotion on Sunday morning with three more hours of Eucharistic Adoration.
Although each community and apostolate prayed for its local needs, the Congregation lifted up three particular intentions during the 40 hours of prayer: the canonization of our founder, Blessed Basile Moreau, vocations to the Holy Cross Family, and the new Congregational mission to the Diocese of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea and a wider renewal of our missionary spirit and zeal.
Adoration was one of the spiritual devotions closest to Blessed Moreau's heart. “Among the practices of piety in use in our Congregation," he wrote, "there is one which I cannot recommend strongly enough because its faithful practice is the richest source of divine blessings for us and for our houses. I refer to the perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament.”
The 150th Anniversary celebrations, which began on January 20, 2023, are set to conclude on June 7, 2024, which is the Feast of the Sacred Heart.