The Feast of Corpus Christi always has a special meaning to us that live, work and worship in the diocese that bears our Savior’s name. This year it takes on an added significance because we will have the great opportunity to join Pope Francis for an hour of Eucharistic Adoration in honor of ‘ Corpus Christi’.
When speaking of the reasons that led him to institute the Year of Faith, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, noted that this time would provide the opportunity “to intensify the celebration of the faith in the liturgy, especially in the Eucharist, which is the summit towards which the activity of the Church is directed and also the source from which all its power flows.” (Porta fidei, n. 9) Benedict XVI declared that Sunday, June 2, 2013 at 5 p.m. Rome time, the Holy Father would preside at an hour of Eucharistic Adoration in St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican, in communion with all Bishops and with their local diocesan communities around the world.
On Sunday, June 2, we will celebrate Mass at the Cathedral at 9:30 a.m. as usual but the Mass will conclude on or about 10 a.m. so that we can join with the Universal Church in Adoration. I have asked as many parishes as possible to join this worldwide embrace of the Eucharist. If it is not possible to adjust the Mass schedule, pastors will try to hold an hour of Adoration sometime during the day.
This year will be the fourth that I celebrate, as the Bishop of Corpus Christi, the feast of Corpus Christi. A bishop is required to be present in his diocese to celebrate the feast. This lends great significance to the feast for the whole Church, and in particular for me as the bishop of the diocese bearing the same name.
The feast of Corpus Christi brings together my ministry as bishop and the ministry of all who comprise the body of Christ. The sentiment that I have celebrating this feast is one of great hope. The body of Christ is the sacrament of communion, communion with Christ and communion with one another. All of us should take seriously that we form the body of Christ together.
Have a blessed Feast of Corpus Christi.