In the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher, in Jerusalem, the Feast of the Body of Christ was celebrated, like every year, on the Thursday following the Sunday of the Most Holy Trinity. The liturgy was presided by the Apostolic Administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem, Mons. Pierbattista Pizzaballa.
Among the participants: friars, religious and local Christians, who prayed with devotion during the celebration.
In the homily, Bishop Pizzaballa said that God loved the world through His body ... He explained that Jesus loved the people he met, that He approached them, looked at them, felt compassion for them, touched them and let them touch Him, He was anointed with perfume ... he laid his hands on them, caressed them, listened to them, spoke to them. He was hungry and thirsty. He felt tired and He was scared. He shared His path and sat at the table with them, felt tenderness and anger. He addressed his prayers to the Father. And in the places He visited, His Body healed and saved.
And in the Last Supper with his friends, Jesus' Body was the sign of his final presence among us in the Eucharist.
The Archbishop recalled the Word in which Jesus says:
As of tradition, mass ended with the procession of the Blessed Sacrament around the Holy Sepulcher.
Mons. PIERBATTISTA PIZZABALLA, ofm
Apostolic Administrator of the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem
"The Eucharist is Christ who gives himself to all of us with His death and resurrection in Easter. Therefore, celebrating the Mystery in the same place is a teaching, whose meaning is that God is always present in our midst: we, as church, must be made broken bread for the world, we must be a living Eucharist with Christ.”
Fr. CARLOS VANDERLEI DE MELO
Mary's Works Community
"We celebrate the Body that was given to us right here in the Cenacle. Near here he was crucified, died, and here too, he has risen: therefore, the celebration of Corpus Christi here in Jerusalem is a cause of great joy and an opportunity to renew our faith and our love for the Eucharist and for the Lord Jesus.”
It is also a special day for Father Louis, who is celebrating 50 years of priesthood just today!
Fr. LOUIS WEHBĘ, OCSO
Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance
"The first thought that comes to mind is immense gratitude to the Lord! I cannot even thank him as I should! (...) When I think that 50 years ago I was ordained a priest to serve the Lord, to serve the souls and to save the world ... I am still below the level where I should be, but I trust in the infinite mercy of the Lord!”