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Holy Hour is the Roman Catholic devotional tradition of spending an hour in Eucharistic adoration in the presence of the Blessed Sacrament.[1] A plenary indulgence is granted for this practice.[2] The practice is also observed in many Anglican churches.


In 1673 Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque stated that she had a vision of Jesus in which she was instructed to spend an hour every Thursday night to meditate on the sufferings of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. This practice later became widespread among Catholics.[3][4][5]

The inspiration for the Holy Hour is Matthew 26:40.[6] In the Gospel of Matthew, during the agony in the Garden of Gethsemane the night before his crucifixion, Jesus spoke to his disciples, saying "My soul is sorrowful even to death. Remain here and keep watch with me." (Matthew 26:38) Returning to the disciples after prayer, he found them asleep and in Matthew 26:40 he asked Peter:

"So, could you men not keep watch with me for an hour?".[6]

In 1829, the Archconfraternity of the Holy Hour was established by Père Robert Debrosse at Paray-le-Monial, Bourgogne, France.[7] In 1911 it received the right of aggregation for the entire world.[8] A similar society called "The Holy Perpetual Hour of Gethsemani" was formed in Toulouse in 1885 and was canonically erected in 1907. In 1909 it received indulgences from Pope Pius X.[9][10]

The practice of a "daily Holy Hour" has been encouraged in the Catholic tradition, for instance Mother Teresa of Calcutta had a Holy Hour each day and all members of her Missionaries of Charity followed her example.[11][12] The Holy Hour has been practiced by saints such as Gemma Galgani , Faustina Kowalska.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The New Catholic Dictionary". 
  2. ^ Apostolic Penitentiary. Manual of Indulgences: Norms and Grants. 2006. Washington, D.C.: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. p. 48.
  3. ^ Ann Ball, 2003 Encyclopedia of Catholic Devotions and Practices ISBN 0-87973-910-X page 240
  4. ^ The Westminster Dictionary of Christian Spirituality by Gordon S. Wakefield 1983 ISBN 0-664-22170-X page 347
  5. ^ Catholic encyclopedia
  6. ^ a b Peter Stravinskas, 1998, Our Sunday Visitor's Catholic Encyclopedia, OSV Press ISBN 0-87973-669-0 page 498
  7. ^ Catholic encyclopedia
  8. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis, III, 157.
  9. ^ Acta Apostolicae Sedis, I, 483.
  10. ^ Catholic encyclopedia
  11. ^ A Drama of Reform by Benedict J. Groeschel 2005 ISBN 1-58617-114-3 page 30
  12. ^ My Daily Eucharist II Joan Carter McHugh 1997 ISBN 0-9640417-5-8 page 14
  13. ^ The voices of Gemma Galgani by Rudolph M. Bell, 2003 ISBN 0-226-04196-4 pages 15 and 47

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948 news items

Sidney Daily News (subscription)
Wed, 28 Oct 2015 13:03:45 -0700

CINCINNATI — The Archdiocese of Cincinnati will hold a Holy Hour for Vocations on Wednesday, Nov. 4, from 7 to 8 p.m. at more than 20 parishes simultaneously across the archdiocese. More parishes will open their doors for a Holy Hour on Tuesday, ...


Mon, 23 Nov 2015 11:52:30 -0800

Jachenhausen (er) Die zweite „Holy Hour“ in Jachenhausen hat am Sonntagabend wohl das spirituelle Bedürfnis vieler und vor allem junger Christen abgedeckt. Noch weit mehr Gläubige als bei der Premiere im Vorjahr waren diesmal in die Pfarrkirche ...

Arkansas Catholic

Arkansas Catholic
Tue, 24 Nov 2015 07:41:57 -0800

The following parishes supplied Arkansas Catholic with a list of activities planned to celebrate the Year of Mercy. Blytheville. Immaculate Conception. Nov 6: Holy hour, 5:30 p.m.. Conway. St. Joseph. Dec. 9: Bilingual Advent reconciliation service, 6 ...

GetReligion (blog)

GetReligion (blog)
Mon, 23 Nov 2015 15:48:45 -0800

Rising at 6 a.m., they begin their day with Holy Hour prayer and morning Mass. They end it with a rosary and lights out at 9:30 p.m. Last Sunday, seminary officials permitted Roberts a brief leave in late afternoon to join another fraternal group ...

Fremont News Messenger

Fremont News Messenger
Fri, 20 Nov 2015 22:11:15 -0800

Jane Moyer, division four, Blessed Sacrament Confraternity holy hour monitor for this week. Saturday: 9 a.m. Communion Service; 3 p.m. Confession; 4 p.m. Mass. Sunday: 10:30 a.m. Mass; 1 p.m. Mass; 4 p.m. 8th grade Confirmation candidates and their ...
Scranton Times-Tribune
Thu, 19 Nov 2015 01:00:00 -0800

Holy hour: 29th annual Day of Love Holy Hour, Sunday, 2 p.m., St. Mary of Mount Carmel Church, Dunmore, honors Christ the King, originated by late Grace Serio of Dunmore. Foundation gala: Anthony J. Rinaldi Jr. Foundation for Children with Cancer fifth ...

The Pilot

The Pilot
Fri, 23 Oct 2015 05:56:15 -0700

Cardinal O'Malley presides at the first Children's Eucharistic Holy Hour sponsored by World Apostolate of Fatima in Boston in 2006. This year marked the 10th anniversary of the celebration in the archdiocese. Pilot file photo/Christine M. Williams ...
Rhode Island Newspaper
Thu, 19 Nov 2015 08:07:30 -0800

WEST WARWICK — The Deanery IV Holy Hour for Life for December will be held at SS Peter and Paul parish, 48 Highland St., at 7 p.m. on the Feast of Our Lady of Loreto, Thursday, Dec. 10. There will be Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, rosary, homily ...

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