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Renewed interest in 'perpetual adoration'

BOSTON, Aug. 10 (UPI) -- Renewed interest in a ritual known as perpetual adoration bodes well for the Roman Catholic Church in Massachusetts, some clergy and lay people said.

The 800-year-old practice waned in the 1960s but is making a comeback in Massachusetts where Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley Saturday is to celebrate its return to Boston's St. Clement Eucharistic Shrine, the Boston Globe reported Monday.

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The ritual calls for people to kneel or sit in the presence of a consecrated wafer, at any hour of the day, embracing the Roman Catholic teaching that the wafer literally has been transformed into the body and blood of Jesus during a mass.

The ritual has been making a modest comeback in Massachusetts, a heavily Roman Catholic state, in churches on Cape Cod and Boston, Natick, Tewksbury and Whitman, said Tim Van Damm, 31, of Somerville, who led the campaign to return the practice to St. Clement.

"God is everywhere, but there is a difference when you are physically in the presence of God,'' Van Damm said.

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