A devotional service is simply a form of prayer with a specific intent. At St. Edward’s there are two primary forms of devotional service in practice; the Rosary, and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
The word “rosary” is derived from the Latin “rosarium”, which means “Crown of Roses”. During the Rosary we reflect on the various Mysteries of the life of Christ, and ask for the intercessory prayers of his mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. It is also a special devotional to Mary herself and her singular place in the life of Our Lord is acknowledged and praised by all who participate. The Rosary has long been a devotional practice among Anglo-Catholics, especially those who feel a special connection to the Blessed Mother.
BENEDICTION OF THE BLESSED SACRAMENT
Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament involves the exposition of the consecrated Host in a vessel known as a Monstrance. During the Benediction rite the congregation sings the hymns, “O Salutaris”, and “Tantum Ergo” while adoring the Body of Christ Mystically Present in the Host. The priest or bishop officiating at the service then blesses the congregation with the Host, after which the Devine Praises are proclaimed. The service concludes with the singing of the “Te Deum”.
FIRST FRIDAY DEVOTIONS
On the first Friday of every month, the people and clergy of St. Edward’s gather together for an evening of worship and fellowship. The evening begins with Evensong, followed by the Holy Mass. After Mass Benediction is offered, during which one of the clergy presents a devotional reading, usually based on topics ranging from the life of one of the saints to the particular season of the Church.
After Benediction, the congregation comes together to share a meal each other’s company in Christian fellowship. Those who have attended this evening of special devotion have described it as a very spiritually fulfilling experience. Please see the monthly calendar for specifics about the First Friday schedule.