Thursday, June 07, 2007

Adore from a Desk

Though most of the Catholic world won't celebrate it for another three days, this Thursday after Trinity Sunday is the traditional observance of Corpus Christi, the solemnity of the body and blood of Christ.

Whether marked now or at the weekend -- the latter being the case in locales where today isn't a holy day of obligation -- it's a popular feast for processions the world over, like the one shown above this morning in B16's native Bavaria. Much as he would've enjoyed it, Regensburg's favorite son wasn't on hand, of course; come eventide in Rome, Papa Ratzi'll be setting off for the customary outdoor Mass at St John Lateran, after which thousands will follow the open Popemobile to St Mary Major as the kneeling pontiff prays before the exposed host down the length of Via Merulana.

And just in case anyone's thinking that papal security's bound to become more Secret Service than Swiss Guard after yesterday's incident, the Holy See has already shot back with a firm "no" -- and not just because the logistics of President Bush's swing-through on Saturday, which'll shutter much of the city center for most of the day, have caused more Roman frustration over hours of gridlock than years worth of the Urb's constant stream of pilgrims.

Regardless, for those who'd like to celebrate Corpus a few days early (or all through the year), a Philly-based venture has taken to webcasting adoration of the Blessed Sacrament -- a traditional practice which has experienced a massive resurgence in recent years worldwide, even taking place in some parishes on a perpetual basis.

Featuring nothing but a monstrance containing the consecrated Species, the Flash-based virtual devotion is beamed from the chapel of the Philadelphia convent of the Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters, dubbed the "Pink Sisters" for the color of their habits. Alongside their contemplative charism, the sisters are known in many parts as a popular supplier of the hosts used in the celebration of the Eucharist.

...oh, and they take prayer requests, too.

Reuters/Michaela Rehle