Oh No! Yet another of our three holy “Thursdays” bites the dust in Rome!

Corpus Christi procession – Jules Breton, 1857

In many countries, ten days after the feast of Pentecost, elaborate and beautiful Corpus Christi processions along the streets have been held for centuries and are still being held today in cities and in towns of mainly Catholic countries, although in nearly all places the feast has been transferred from the traditional Thursday to the following Sunday.

For about a hundred years, in Rome, Italy, the centre of Roman Catholicism, these processions were only held within the confines of St. Peter’s Square, which is within the boundaries of the autonomous Vatican state, not technically part of Italy at all. In 1982, Pope St. John Paul II, recalling the elaborate processions through the streets of his native Poland, brought the Corpus Christi procession out of St. Peter’s Square and back to the streets and the people of Rome. “Pope John Paul wanted the Blessed Sacrament carried into the city, where the people lived, as they did in Poland” – (Remembering Corpus Christi with Pope John Paul II–Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades.) This custom has been continued under Pope Benedict XVI, and, so far, under Pope Francis.

However, it was reported in the UK Catholic Herald last week that, “Pope Francis moves Corpus Christi procession to Sunday”:

Vatican spokesman Greg Burke said a Sunday celebration will cause ‘less inconvenience’ in Rome

Pope Francis is to celebrate Corpus Christi on Sunday rather than Thursday next month.

Greg Burke, director of the Vatican press office, said the Pope had decided to postpone the celebration next month from June 15 to June 18.

He said a Sunday procession would be easier for people to attend and would also cause less inconvenience in Rome.

Pope Francis made the decision, he said, “in favour of a better participation of the People of God, of priests and of the faithful of the Church in Rome.” He added: “There is a second reason: Thursday is a weekday and so there will be less inconvenience in Rome.”

[…]

So in the same sorry way that the glorious feast of Our Lord’s Ascension into Heaven, 40 days after Easter, was pushed forward to the following Sunday, throwing the dates of the feast all out-of-sync, the feast of the Solemnity of Corpus Christi in Rome, under Pope Francis, has now also given in to pressure to make the celebration with the procession of the Most Holy Eucharist along the streets, less “inconvenient”.

Inconvenient to whom? To Rome’s drivers, with the city’s already chaotic traffic conditions? How could a Continent like Europe, built on Christendom, that spread the One True Faith to the four corners of the Earth, put anything like traffic problems before our sacred duty to give honour and homage to Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Most Adorable Sacrament on this one day of the year?

We already have our answer to the above questions, don’t we? Europe can no longer be described as a Catholic continent. Starting with the Protestant Revolution, through the worldly ideology of the Enlightenment, it has been handing its glorious Christan heritage over to the ‘g’od of Mammon… whilst the false religion of Islam, with its intrinsic hatred of Christianity, gradually and silently gains ground.

HERE is my little rant from three years ago about that so-called “inconvenience”. The well-loved Father Z has periodical little “rants” on this topic too, of the unnecessary pushing forward of Liturgical feast days to the following Sunday!

It may seem like an insignificant matter in the grand scheme of things, when far more serious attacks with grave, far-reaching consequences for Catholic doctrinal teaching and tradition are continually being aimed at the Church today. But for what purpose have we been created? It is precisely through these overlooked small ways, in the slackening of the spirit of sacrifice, putting our comfort and worldly ease before our love and duty towards God, that the greater, more dangerous issues that wish to undermine the Catholic Faith are able to flourish.

Time to wake up and take to heart the First Commmandment to love Our Lord and God above all things!

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8 Responses to Oh No! Yet another of our three holy “Thursdays” bites the dust in Rome!

  1. J.P. says:

    A mere procession is not a sacrament. Better to encourage people to attend and participate in the Mass which is quintessentially the way to observe the First Commandment and to give due honour to God. Walking around a city and disrupting traffic is simply a form of exhibitionism without any religious merit.

  2. The Raven says:

    Do the absolute minimum, eh John? Busy city traffic should always take precedence over God, made present in the Eucharist; we wouldn’t want to disrupt the populace’s worship of Mammon for a moment would we? No, far better for the dwindling few to hold their Masses safely out of sight of the general population – we wouldn’t want anyone to perhaps see something of God and be evangelised, would we? I’m sure that you can find a Jesuit somewhere to tell you that Our Lord’s command to the Apostles to preach penance and the remission of sins in His name unto all nations just needs to be reinterpreted to mean exactly the opposite.

  3. J.P. says:

    The Raven @18.42.
    Attending Mass is not the absolute minimum, but is in fact the central act of Christian worship and one can attend Mass daily. Receiving the Eucharist at Mass seems to me to be a much more authentic form of divine worship than merely parading publicly with the sacred host in a monstrance.The ultra pious of course want their parades to satisfy some emotional but not strictly religious need.
    Traffic in a city is not always to facilitate the worship of Mammon; priests use cars to discharge their pastoral duties, often urgently to administer the Last Rites. Doctors and ambulance personnel to make urgent journeys. Police for the public’s protection and to deal with crime.
    When Pope John Paul II was seriously injured by a gunman and needed to be rushed to hospital in Rome to save his life would it have been appropriate for the ambulance to have to wait until the Eucharistic procession passed by ?

    I don’t know why you need to take a side swipe at Jesuit priests. None among those I know as friends advocate the opposite of our Lord’s teaching. Nor do I.

  4. The Raven says:

    So let me see, John, you conceive of the streets of Rome as being packed with priests carrying the viaticum, ambulances tearing away on missions of mercy and police-cars chasing after wrongdoers; have you ever actually been there? Or to any other city for that matter?

    And it isn’t “a host in a monstrance”.

    You should know that, you keep telling us that you went to a good school, where they taught you the Faith.

    And why do I say that about Jesuits? I can’t begin to imagine.

  5. johnhenrycn says:

    Fr Arturo Sosa Abascal, a Venezuelan Communist and Modernist, is carrying out Francis’s agenda.

    “Turn down any corridor in Francis’s Vatican, and you are likely to run into a de facto communist: Francis has a communist running his order, a communist running his Council of Cardinals (the Honduran cardinal, Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga), a communist running the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences (Margaret Archer, a British sociologist who has said that she represents the “Marxian left”), and communists such as the renegade Brazilian liberation theologian Leonardo Boff and the Canadian socialist Naomi Klein drafting his encyclicals.”

    https://spectator.org/the-popes-marxist-head-of-the-jesuits/

  6. toadspittle says:

    I believe it’s advisable to make a distinction between Marxists and Communists.
    Others may not think so.

    [Moderator – You’re dead right that others do not think so]

  7. J.P. says:

    The Raven May 22@ 22.49. If only one such vehicle on an errand of mercy were delayed by an unnecessary public procession it would be one too many. To answer your question, I have been to Rome many times going back to the sixties during Vatican II and just like other major cities have found it congested by traffic.
    As for other cities, I can echo Keats’ line having been to ‘many goodly states and kingdoms’ including London, New York, Washington, Toronto,Tokyo,Singapore, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, Lisbon,Stockholm,The Hague…. So what ?
    Have your religious processions by all means, if that is your form of minor devotion, but hold them in Church grounds.
    One maverick Jesuit priest does not speak for all.

  8. The Raven says:

    There we have it, John, modern cities are jammed with people doing very different things to running errands of mercy.

    Your Gradgrindian approach to the use of public spaces would only have some merit if it extended to every other public celebration: no more protests or parades, no more Olympic Games in major cities, no more sporting events in city centres, no more pop-concerts or other public festivities. As it is you are narrowly arguing against expressions of Catholicism in a public space.

    Why should any section of the public limit themselves to their own private spaces? Are we to tell Hindoos that they can’t have Juggernaut processions in public places? Or Shias that they can’t parade? Are you going to tell all those secularists that they shouldn’t be marching in the streets of Dublin to try to get infanticide legalised? Should Martin Luther King have led his protests and demos on his own land?

    I think your proposal is ridiculous; you’ve argued yourself into a rhetorical dead-end and you’re flailing around to no good purpose.

    One maverick Jesuit priest does not speak for all.

    They’ve recently appointed that particular maverick jesuit the superior of their order, so he literally does speak for them all.

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