What Not to Do In Adoration


What Not To Do In Adoration

A pristine, bronze plaque hangs in a perfect square next to the Adoration Chapel door. In bold type, it says: Please observe silence at all times within the chapel. 

We all know we’re supposed to be quiet and pray, so I asked some friends for the flip side of this: What are we not supposed to do during Adoration?


1. Do not whisper your prayers.

Technically you’re whispering, not talking, but when everything else is silent, you are the loudest thing in the room.

You may think we can’t hear you, but we can hear every syllable.

2. Don’t do crosswords, thumb wars, and for heaven’s sake, no Uno!

One of the nicest priests I know asks his parish to please not use adoration time for entertainment time. If you’re going to read, read something that brings you closer to God.

Jesus doesn’t mind us indulging in amusements now and then, but your time in the Adoration Chapel is meant to help you focus on Him.

Are you reading prayers on your phone or just catching up on the news? God is watching. Click To Tweet

3. Don’t rattle those rosary beads.

adoration3Or scrounge around in your book bag ad nauseam. Or constantly click your prayer journal pen. Or drive people crazy in general.

A friend crochets prayer shawls during Adoration because she said the constant, repetitive clicking of knitting needles in the silence of Adoration is like a form of torture.


4. Don’t make phone calls.

If you have to talk on the phone, even briefly, please step outside of the chapel. You have no idea why the other people in the chapel are there. Perhaps you don’t feel the need to be reverent, but the person kneeling nearby could be trying to cope with a serious problem and needs the refuge of silence.


5. Do not forget to silence your phone.

Smart phones are fabulous tools for spiritual growth. I love my prayer apps! But alarms, keyboard sounds, and text dings can sound like nails on a chalkboard in the chapel.


6. Don’t let the kids get rambunctious.

adoration4I have toddler art on many of my walls, Lego scars on the souls of my feet, and a cockeyed chandelier because who-knows-what-happened. In short, I’m not a stuffy mom. I also believe that children should be in the Adoration chapel regularly, even if for only five minutes at a time.

I have however literally walked in, knelt, and walked right back out because a little one decided to just howl for all she was worth.

Little squeals and whispers aren’t a big deal, but keep in mind the Golden Rule: Don’t let your kids get away with what you wish other people wouldn’t let their kids get away with…

Golden Rule of Kid Behavior: if it annoys you when other kids do it, don't let your kids do it. Click To Tweet

7. Don’t prostrate for so long that people think you’ve passed out.

This happened to a friend of mine. She has survived a lot of suffering in life, and sometimes she feels so overwhelmed with love for Jesus that she feels the need to lie prostrate before Him. But then one night she lay there just a little too long…

Also, be aware of your limitations: If kneeling causes you so much pain that you can’t get up, don’t kneel! Do what you can to act out your reverence, but don’t do something that would put yourself in jeopardy.


8. Don’t fall asleep…and snore!

This really needs no explanation.



Jeadoration5sus loves you even if you forget to silence your phone, you’re so into praying that you don’t realize your six year old is crawling all over the floor looking for her lost tooth, and you’re so tired you start snoring in the middle of your first decade.

Jesus loves the three year old who announces he has to go poop, right now! And he loves the ninety year old who won’t stop clicking his pen.

Jesus, fully human, walked around on earth for 3 decades. He gets us; He gets you.Click To Tweet

He is the compassionate High Priest because He is God Incarnate, the Son of Man. He was fully human and walked around with humanity for three decades. He gets it; He gets us; He gets you. So go to Adoration, even if quietness takes to you like oil to water. Just pretty please don’t forget that reverence is a form of love and the Friend of Sinners is also the King of Kings.

Share with me what helps you in Adoration! How do you stay prayerful?



  1. Mary-117586 February 12, 2017 Reply

    I have the Laudate app on my phone. Sometimes when I’m in adoration I use it to look up prayers or novenas or the liturgy of the hours. At first I felt like others were judging me, thinking I was texting or not paying attention. I cannot worry about hypocrites judging me. It’s great to have many prayers at your fingertips when in adoration.

  2. Susie Lloyd January 25, 2017 Reply

    Oh please can I add one? If you are at all in charge of it – as the custodian of this one church I went to on Good Friday was – don’t play music. It may be edifying to you but it destroys the silence. God speaks in the silence.
    I fell asleep once at Adoration (but I don’t think I snored) and it was just lovely. I didn’t do it on purpose. It felt like God cradling me in His arms and saying, “Relax for once and let Me run things.”

  3. Thomas-669718 January 23, 2017 Reply

    All of these things sound like things that happen in Mass too. Like one poster said, some are fairly obvious, and some are out of your control. It’s not easy for me to go to adoration at all because I have ADHD and my mind wanders. Mass is difficult too, because it’s not easy for me to stand, kneel, and sit every few minutes because I have muscle problems.

  4. Michelle H. January 18, 2017 Reply

    Great article and not judgemental at all. Yes, we need to be charitable when correction is needed. However, Adoration is being before the Lord who is TRULY PRESENT and we do need a structure as to how to adore. This involves bringing to light things that many people do, but don’t realize are disruptive. It’s okay to instruct on that. We can’t be so in fear of being judgemental that we can’t say anything and let bad behavior continue. We are called to instruct and counsel the ignorant/those who are not aware.
    Great article, Emily!

  5. Alberto-1199736 January 17, 2017 Reply

    Good article, I will add several ones: “no social chit chat please…” go outside…

  6. Conor D. January 17, 2017 Reply

    I whispered will you marry me to my fiancé during adoration, I’m sure God will understand but just then the wind picked up and the old church roof creeked and the doors rattled. It’s funny because a couple was calling out the rosary behind us while we were in prayer, with all the thoughts rushing through my head it gave me something to concentrate on. I don’t know I thought it was nice I was saying it along with them in my mind, ring in my pocket, determined to ask her when the thoughts of her walking down the isle just filled my mind but I grabbed her on the way out and whispered about halfway up the isle I whispered “will you marry me?” so as to be out of ear shot of others. My heart was pounding, what a wonderful moment just me and her and the presence of the lord himself.
    I don’t know if we would have met without Catholic match or not I would like to think we would. We liked to dance to country music and I saw her out dancing right after we we’re matched on Catholic match and I recognized her right away. It was her birthday and she was celebrating with friends and I had just split up with someone else and wasn’t up to the task of coming on to her that night. However I wrote her a long note explain why I wanted to take her out and how I had seen her and she was so pretty and stuff and after a couple weeks she received it, she was not active on catholic match. But she wrote me back, I would have gone to that bar every night until I met her there again I’m not saying Catholic match is the only way to find someone but it worked pretty darn good for me.
    If anything I feel I’m so blessed it’s almost unfair! And that is my adoration story…

  7. Jaime-556629 January 17, 2017 Reply

    Would you say maybe a lot of people don’t know better about adoration. It’s a innocent ignorance there probably coming to the faith or coming back to the faith if i whisper my prayers half the time the other people are not any where near me please God welcomes all be polite when you tell someone

    Don’t be mean in adoration remember your trying to connect and bring souls to Christ lol just saying I have seen people in the church run people away for GOOD

  8. Magdalena-1401855 January 16, 2017 Reply

    I’ve only been to an adoration a couple times in my life- and I have to say it is not for kids who haven’t had their first communion, toddlers or babies and it is not a place where you send text messages either. I really think it is for mature believes you know and fully understand that Christ is present in the Host. However, how do we expect people to have respect and stay quiet during adoration when many people have their androids and iphones on during mass and some people show up to church like 10-15 min late and don’t seem to think it is a big deal- then you have those who leave even before the Priest gives his final blessing and some right after communion.

  9. Danielle-429469 January 16, 2017 Reply

    I can see the author’s point… But the article comes across as judgemental. Yes, other people are praying and you want to be respectful. But most of these are obvious- if something another person is doing at adoration is bothering you, just talk to them! What are they going to do, cuss you out? Many of these complaints are out of people’s control. Kids aren’t always easy to handle and it’s a challenge just to get them there. Busy people are tired and make big sacrifices to do adoration in the middle of the night, so why criticize them for falling asleep? What harm does it do if someone taps you on the shoulder when you lie prostate? Honestly, the way it is presented, it sounds like the author is paying more attention to others than to the Lord. (I hope that’s not reality, but that’s how it comes across to me).

    It could instead be phrased as “try not to” or stated in the positive (“stay awake ” versus”don’t fall asleep”).

  10. Otti-1143632 January 16, 2017 Reply

    sometimes at adoration: when the tempest arises, feel free like “little Samuel” to sleep in the boat, and let the Master rebuke the waves; as for you, keep thy peace even when the whole world is barking…

  11. Alba-1356755 January 16, 2017 Reply

    Please, please, please silence your phone! Good article!

  12. Teresa-1318033 January 16, 2017 Reply

    Yes, people who whisper prayers drive me crazy! Actually I find it quite inconsiderate. Never act like you are the only one in the chapel when you are not! All the advice was right on. Good article!

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