Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration ending 24/7 prayer ministry

The adoration ministry will begin praying for 16 hours daily next month
mary of the angels chapel
Mary of the Angels Chapel

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT)- Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration (FSPA), beginning next month, will no longer pray 24 hours, seven days a week.

After 23 years of including prayer partners in its adoration ministry and following 12 years of careful study of the future of the practice, FSPA will pray daily 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. beginning February 26, 2020. The congregation has prayed 24/7 in their chapel since August 1, 1878.

“FSPA remains devoted to the spirit of our long-standing tradition. Our thoughtful study over the years has included a growing understanding of a modern way to live in adoration through our prayer lives and actions, no matter where we are,” says Franciscan Sister of Perpetual Adoration Eileen McKenzie, president. “Our congregation name will remain Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration. Per discussions with the Vatican and review of the FSPA constitutions, the name will not change due to the longevity of the tradition and the fact that the sisters and prayer partners will continue adoration in the Adoration Chapel to the extent possible, and by definition of perpetual, repeated continuously even though interrupted for portions of time.”

According to the FSPA, prayer partners will continue to play a vital role in the adoration ministry, as they have since 1997. New partners will be welcomed to the ministry as it switches to the new timeline and prayer requests will continue to be accepted via the FSPA website or text 601-308-1849. The domes atop Mary of the Angels Chapel and the Adoration Chapel will remain lit as a sign of the congregation’s continued prayer for the city of La Crosse and the world.

“We started adoration in 1878 after Mother Antonia Herb’s promise to begin the 24/7 practice came to fruition,” adds Sister Eileen. “In 1997, prayer partners were invited to help continue the promise, primarily taking daytime hours while sisters living at St. Rose Convent continued the night hours. As demographics continued changing in the early 2000s, we began studying the future of the practice and growing in our understanding of how we can move forward tending to the spirit of perpetual adoration while recognizing it becoming necessary to discontinue night hours.”

The sisters and prayer partners now prepare to enter into the next phase of perpetual adoration. “We’re inviting all Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration, our current partners in mission and future partners, to pray and live in adoration from any location at any time,” says Sister Eileen.