18 June 2017

“… for we walk by faith, not by sight.” (2 Cor. 5:7)

A Corpus Christi Procession was organized by the Archdiocese of Brisbane on Sunday 18 June. It was a glorious day with ‘brother sun’ radiating benevolently his brilliant light, warming every devout heart who made their way to St. Stephen’s Cathedral.

At 1:30 p.m. there were already hundreds and hundreds of people gathered on the Cathedral ground. They came from different nations; we greeted each other like CORPUS CHRISTI 2017brothers and sisters returning home from far away countries for a family reunion. Then, the recitation of the Rosary began. When we had finished saying the Rosary, we started to prepare ourselves for the procession. We were allocated where we should follow in the line of procession. I was impressed by the Indian children, dressed in their traditional costumes, some of whom carried a big, decorative ‘umbrella’ resembling a miniature ‘canopy’, and they followed the procession cheerfully in good order and with great devotion. They reminded me of those who are “… the first-fruits for God and for the Lamb. They never allowed a lie to pass their lips and no fault can be found in them”. “…they follow the Lamb wherever he goes…”. (Rev. 13:5, 4)
At 2:00 p.m. we heard a Trumpet Fanfare, welcoming the Blessed Sacrament exposed on the main altar. The choir started singing O Salutaris, it was followed by another hymn: Let All Mortal Flesh. All faithful assembled joined in the singing. Then, Procession began, led by Archbishop Mark Coleridge. The seven of us, SPC Sisters were lucky, we were walking just a few steps behind the Blessed Sacrament canopy. I cannot help feeling Jesus was so close to us and we were walking beside Him.
As the Procession went through the City central - Edward Street, Adelaide Street, ANZAC Square, Elizabeth Street and so on, it attracted numerous pedestrians and drivers, tourists and local citizens. They watched us with curiosity and in dignified silence. A few bowed their heads, one or two even knelt on the ground in worship as the Blessed Sacrament passed by. Some took photos of the procession. Buses and cars stopped moving in areas where traffic was allowed, waiting patiently and quietly for the procession to move ahead. I suppose most of those drivers and on-lookers did not understand what was going on, yet they showed great respect to our Lord and to us - his disciples who sang hymns and recited the rosary without fear or shame.CORPUS CHRISTI 2017
The part that moved me to tears was the moment when the Procession was returning to where it started and the Blessed Sacrament was held up high solemnly by a priest, and later on by the Archbishop in front of the door of the Cathedral facing thousands of believers who knelt down on the steps, the pavements, and on street grounds in silent adoration of our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament – “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…” (John 1:14). It was awesome, inspiring and beautiful to see the people of God proclaiming and professing our Lord Jesus Christ in public with such simplicity and love. This is evangelization! This is witnessing our faith!
When the Blessed Sacrament entered into the Cathedral, all the faithful also entered. After the Gospel Reading, Archbishop Mark gave us a homily, encouraging us to be faithful to our call as children of the Heavenly Father. It was followed by the Prayers of Intercessions and the Consecration to the Sacred Heart. The whole event concluded with Benediction.
What a tremendous joy and privilege that our Sisters were part of the assembly in this wonderful event of Corpus Christi Procession. Today I have experienced and witnessed with my own eyes, the Church ‘born anew’ at the pierced side of her crucified Christ – the Bride who is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic. Today, I saw we, the Church, had set the people of Brisbane on fire with God’s love and a desire for furthering His Kingdom!
Sr. Mary Joseph Sze


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