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Taffy Council: Evangelizer for perpetual adoration

Benton parishioners has launched or rehabbed chapels throughout the country

Published: January 23, 2014   
Dwain Hebda
Taffy Council

Name: Taffy Council

Parish: Our Lady of Fatima

City: Benton

Age: 65

Family: Husband Tony, married for 44 years; four children, Kristen McConnell, John Council, Sarah McConnell and Justin Council; six grandchildren

Why you want to know Taffy: A desire for a close personal relationship with Jesus led Taffy to establish a perpetual adoration ministry at her parish. Since then, she has become a recognized authority on the process, helping parishes throughout Arkansas and beyond start or resuscitate their own perpetual adoration ministry.


Arkansas Catholic’s theme this year is “Tools for Discipleship.” What religious items or tools — Bible, rosary, religious books and periodicals, etc. — do you rely on regularly to inform and inspire you?

The grace you get from perpetual Eucharistic adoration is nothing short of miraculous. This grace is the glue that holds a parish together, but it’s also in those sweet, tender personal moments that are so filled with hope and truth.

How did you get started?

I was inspired by former pastors’ daily prayer time. I thought to myself, if it’s vital to their lives and they’re priests, then I, a sinner, really need it. Every day on my way to work, I’d come sit before the Lord. In one of those times I heard the small still voice speak to me about perpetual Eucharistic adoration. Father Michael Bass had just come here as pastor and I asked him if he would allow me to attempt this. He’d just come from Pocahontas and he’d seen what the adoration ministry had done for that parish. That was 14 years ago, on March 6.

In 14 years, you must have experienced a little bit of everything.

I’ve see people gain a relationship with the Father, but not only the Lord, among each other as well. I’ve seen people who never even thought of getting involved with their church get into adoration and then become active with other parts of parish life. And I’ve seen the beauty of two communities becoming one in our church.

How so?

When we started to see more Hispanic families in our parish, there were some growing pains. But we learned to value what each other’s culture brought to the community in general and adoration in particular. I’ve been edified by the devotion the Hispanics bring to adoration. They bring their whole families. I have one woman who came to adoration while she was pregnant and then after she had the baby she brought the baby.

Benton was just the beginning. Since then, you’ve been quite the evangelizer for Eucharistic adoration.

We’ve opened eight chapels, and I’ve been asked to speak at something like 22 parishes. I’ve worked personally with parishes in Texas, Louisiana and Missouri as well as Arkansas, and I’ve worked by phone and e-mail with parishes as far away as Nova Scotia.

What I do mostly these days is renew chapels and ministries. People’s lives change, and it’s important to rejuvenate these from time to time and so I help parishes do that. I’ve made almost every mistake in the book in this, and I share that experience with parish committees to help them work through their issues.

I have a big mouth. When I find something that’s this good, I’m going to share it. By the way, are you an adorer?

No, I haven’t done that.

Well, you really should give it a try sometime. But I’ll warn you, it’s addictive. I love to tell people just like you can’t go sit in the rain and not get wet, you can’t sit before the body and blood of Jesus and not be touched with mercy and love and grace.

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