Colleen Rowan Photo
Pictured is the Blessed Margaret of Castello Eucharistic Adoration Chapel in Shinnston.
By Colleen Rowan
This fall, the Blessed Margaret of Castello Eucharistic Adoration Chapel in Shinnston will celebrate its 20th anniversary. Established by St. Ann Parish in the small central West Virginia town of Shinnston, the chapel offers the Catholic faithful the opportunity to spend time with Christ.
The anniversary celebration will be held Oct. 20. Following the 10 a.m. Mass, an outdoor Eucharistic procession with the Blessed Sacrament from the church to the front doors of the chapel will be held. A luncheon will follow.
“Outside the chapel we will have song, incense and blessing with the Blessed Sacrament then placing the monstrance inside, taking its regular place for adoration,” said Father Gary Naegele, associate pastor of St. Ann’s.
The chapel opened Oct. 24, 1999, as one of more than 1,000 perpetual adoration chapels in the U.S. and was dedicated to Blessed Margaret of Castello, patroness of the people with disabilities, the unwanted, and the unborn.
“In this world where there are many who are unwanted, especially the unborn, I thought that she would be a good patroness for the chapel,” said the late Father Karl R. Wohinc in an interview with The Catholic Spirit in 2003. Father Wohinc served as pastor of St. Ann’s from 1984 to 2012. There is a plaque honoring Father Wohinc for making the chapel possible.
The chapel is now open from 6 a.m. to midnight every day. “The blessings to the individual adorer and to the church and all surrounding communities are great and our adoration is our attempt to reach out, with the help of God’s invitation and grace, to become holy in the presence of God,” stated on the parish website.
The chapel is located next to the church and bears the theme from the Book of Revelation. Two passages from Revelation are displayed on either side of the entrance doors—“Now at last, God has His dwelling among men,” Rev. 21:3; and, “The throne of God and of the Lamb shall be there, and His servants shall serve Him faithfully,” Rev. 22:3.
Fixtures, such as candles and lights, in the interior of the chapel are in sets of seven—the number of perfection. Outside of the chapel above the doors and on the walk leading to the building, the Eucharist is displayed with four rays of light shining out from the center. There are three stained glass windows in the chapel—the largest was crafted by a man from Clarksburg and the smaller two were donated in memory of a local man’s son.
The chapel draws Catholic faithful from around the area. “Adorers are from the surrounding communities and counties from Morgantown to the north, to Clarksburg to the south,” Father Naegele said. “We are all in need of prayer, and to pray for others before the Lord.”
In order for someone to be present with the Lord 18 hours a day, seven days a week, 126 adorers are needed, Father Naegele said. “There are Catholics as well as non-Catholics who take one-hour turns with the Blessed Sacrament,” he said. “Every week, every day, there are adorers from 6 a.m. to midnight. An ecumenical blessing is that the Eucharistic Lord is bringing men and women from other Christian denominations.”
“Many prayers of petition have gone up before the Lord over the years and likewise many, many blessings have been received, prayers answered, favors reported,” Father Naegele said. “We have a book for prayer requests that helps a person to be able to write their thoughts down.”
St. Ann’s, a parish of 250 families, is located less than a half hour from both Fairmont and Bridgeport just off of Interstate 79.
For more information about the chapel, call the parish office at (304) 592-2733 or visit stannshinnston.com.