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​Praise and gratitude for the Lord for leading the world through a difficult year

July 12, 2021 | posted by Today's Catholic newspaper

Topics: Archbishop, In the Press, Breaking News

Praise and gratitude for the Lord for leading the world through a difficult year

After a year’s absence, a eucharistic procession was held in downtown San Antonio on the Feast of Corpus Christi to give public witness to the Real Presence of Jesus in the Most Holy Eucharist.

A small procession was held in Main Plaza in front of San Fernando Cathedral after the 5 p.m. vigil Mass on June 5 rather than on the streets in prior years, but flowers petals were still placed at the feet of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament as the procession praised the Lord with prayer and singing. Once back inside the cathedral, the Eucharist remained exposed until midnight with songs of praise and times for silent expressions of gratitude.

Half a world away, celebrating Corpus Christi Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica June 6, Pope Francis noted that Jesus instituted the Eucharist in the large Upper Room in Jerusalem.

He said: “We need to enlarge our hearts. We need to break out of the small room of our ego and enter the vast expanse of wonder and adoration.”

The pope lamented that this attitude of adoration was missing in “so many movements” in the Church.

“But if this is missing, if amazement and adoration are missing, there is no road that leads to the Lord. There will be no synod, nothing,” he said in a Catholic News Agency report.

“This is the attitude before the Eucharist, this is what we need: adoration. The Church too must be a large room. Not a small and closed circle, but a community with arms wide open, welcoming to all.”

He continued: “Let us ask ourselves this when someone approaches who is hurting, who has made a mistake, who has gone astray in life: is the Church, this Church, a large room to welcome this person and lead him or her to the joy of the encounter with Christ?”

“The Eucharist wants to nourish those who are tired and hungry along the way, let us not forget that! A Church of the pure and perfect is a room with no place for anyone; the Church with open doors, which gathers and celebrates around Christ, is instead a great hall where everyone -- all, righteous and sinners -- can enter.”

The pope celebrated the live-streamed Mass, marking the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, at the Altar of the Chair. A limited number of people attended due to continuing coronavirus restrictions. They wore face coverings and sat spaced apart.

Before the Gospel reading, the choir sang the sequence “Lauda Sion,” written by St. Thomas Aquinas at the request of Pope Urban IV for the new Mass of the feast of Corpus Christi.

“Lauda Sion” is one of four sequences in the Roman Missal, along with “Victimae paschali laudes,” sung at Easter, “Veni Sancte Spiritus,” at Pentecost, and “Dies irae,” at Requiem Masses.