We must be broken for others
The occasion was on the Feast of Corpus Christi, with an Eucharistic Celebration and procession, organized by City Parish,Penang. The faithful who graced the solemn occasion came from all over the island parishes.
The main celebrant for the Mass was Fr Julien Leow. Co-celebrants were Fr Dominic, parish priest of City Parish, Fr Michael Thoo, assistant parish priest of City Parish, Archbishop Emeritus Soter Fernandez, Fr Gerard Theraviam, and Fr Joe Matthews, OFM Cap.
Half an hour before the Mass began at 5.30pm at theAssumptionChurchinFarquhar Street, the Church was already half filled. It was packed with standing room when Mass began, which was in 3 languages. Homily in Mandarin was delivered by Deacon Aloysius Tan, while Fr Joe delivered the Tamil homily.
In Fr Julien’s homily in English, he pointed out that since we Catholics believe in the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist, we were very privileged to able to celebrate the Eucharist daily and especially on the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ.
“In the first reading, we see how Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, reminding them that the blood signify the covenant with the Lord.” said Fr Julien. “Today, we have the blood of Christ, poured out for you and me. This blood cleanse us from sins and gives us strength.”
He then posed a question to the congregation on what does the Solemnity of the Feast of Corpus Christi means to them. Does it just means that they are grateful to have Christ with them until the end of times?
“It is more than that. We have to realize that we are the body of Christ. Christ’s body is broken, just as how our lives are broken. Therefore, we too are called to be broken for others so that others may have lives.” he said. “Take, bless, give – Christ had gone through this. We must recognize the brokenness in us and be a blessing to others. This solemnity is a challenge for us to give our lives to be broken for others. Let us pray that the Eucharist may purify our inner self though our actions.”
When Mass ended, the Blessed Sacrament was transferred to a decorated lorry for the procession. The procession, from Farquhar Street, wind through almost the whole length ofPenang Road, cut through part ofBurmah RoadtoNew Laneand finally to the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows inMacalister Road, which is just oppositeNew Lane. The distance was about 2 km..
Pretty flower girls, all dressed in white, strewn flowers on the floor to make a ‘flower carpet’ for the Blessed Sacrament to pass through from Church to vehicle. The faithful walked in front and behind the Blessed Sacrament, with lighted candles.
As the journey proceeded, songs of praises were being sung. There were three stops made during the journey, where three different priests raised up the Monstrance to bless the town and the people. The faithful, especially those who followed behind the vehicle, knelt down in the middle of the road as the Monstrance was raised.
When the Blessed Sacrament reached the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, Fr Dominic solemnly took the Monstrance down made his way inside the Church. Benediction followed, after which, all adjourned for fellowship.
Fr Dominic would like to thank everyone for their support to the event and he hoped that they would come back next year, bringing more people.
“I intend to make this an annual affair.” He said. “We had the Mass and procession on the street last year too, so this is the second year we are having it. The increase turnout for this year, showed that people do support street procession and they have a love for the Eucharist. A procession on the street is also one way of evengelising and a manifest of our faith to the public.”
– by Lucia Lai
(published in Herald dated 24 June 2012)
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