Gentile Bellini's Procession in Piazza San Marco

Gentile Bellini’s Procession in Piazza San Marco

One of the standout memories from my years living in Rome was Corpus Christi Sunday. It was a big deal, really the main event in the city that day. The Holy Father takes part, processing through the streets of the Eternal City with the Blessed Sacrament. The air is filled with the sound of countless church bells announcing the presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Beautiful, colorful banners hang from apartment windows, as thousands of faithful and curious onlookers stand shoulder to shoulder along the streets to take it all in. One year, I was fortunate enough to make it to Venice for the procession in Piazza San Marco. With full pomp, the Patriarch of Venice led the procession and benediction in a packed plaza. Lots of people took part. (The procession shown in Bellini’s depiction hasn’t changed much over the centuries…just swap out the lay Renaissance couture for Versace and D&G.) Whether in Rome or Venice, no expense is spared in making this day extraordinary. And why not? We’re Catholic, and we’re talking about the Blessed Sacrament, after all.

So here in Milwaukee, as the Feast Corpus Christi approaches, let’s make the most of the day. It’s unfortunate, but there seems to be a certain lack of interest in processions here in the states, whereas in Latin/Mediterranean countries, they are a natural part of Catholic life: Confession. Mass. Procession. Wine. Dinner. Espresso. Repeat.

So with that in mind, on June 22, the Feast of Corpus Christi, there will be a procession with the Blessed Sacrament after the 10:00AM High Mass at Saint Stanislaus.

Mark your calendars and please join us!