Solemn High Mass for Corpus Christi was celebrated on Thursday Evening in East Harlem. The shrine statue of the Madonna was resplendent in newly restored robes.
Fr. Marian Wierzchowski SAC, the pastor of Our Lady of Mt Carmel,was celebrant and homilist. Fr. Christopher Salvatori SAC served as deacon; Fr. Charez “Don” B. Gringco, as subdeacon. Mr. Lorenzo Tinio was the master of ceremonies. Also, thanks are due to Mr. Teddy Thongratnachat. Last but not least, The Society of St. Hugh of Cluny sponsored this mass.
Mass was followed by the procession with the Blessed Sacrament through the surrounding streets.
(Above and below) What had started as a devout but modest congregation at the start of the mass had grown to very respectable size when the time came to form the procession. The public display of Catholicism (and one of the specific doctrines of Catholicism)that is of the essence of Corpus Christi seems to find remarkable resonance everywhere. It’s the only effective way to “take back the streets.”
And so the procession went its way as the streets gradually grew darker. Languages heard in addition to Latin and English included Polish, Spanish, Haitian Creole…..
(Above) At times the chants of the procession had to compete with boom boxes; the incense with the aroma of joints. But here and there beautiful floral displays had been set up by residents of the area. (Below) The first altar on the processional path was in a florist’s shop; the second in a convent.
Benediction concluded the procession.