Father Leonard Mukiibi knelt down before the Most Blessed Sacrament and prayed a litany of gratitude before leading God’s people on a procession around the St. Thomas the Apostle Church grounds.
It was June 14, the Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (“Corpus Christi”).
“We are going to be moving around our church to show You that we love You, just as You love us,” Fr. Mukiibi prayed. “Thank You for being present every time we come to be with You. Moving around our church with You, let it be a gesture of moving around in our hour loving, moving around in our families, moving around in our community, moving around in the Church, moving around in the world.”
He asked Jesus to bless all who are sick, hurting and in need of reassurance.
Bearing the Eucharist in a monstrance under an ornate canopy carried by local Knights of Columbus, the priest led the people out into the churchyard and to the steps of the rectory.
They stopped at a temporary altar there for Benediction.
From there, singing “Alleluia, Sing to Jesus,” as they processed to the next altar, set up near parish’s baseball diamond, under a large tree that formed a natural canopy of leaves and branches.
The sweet and pungent aroma of flowers and blossoms mixed with the burning incense.
Each time a bell rang during Benediction, Fr. Mukiibi swung the sensor of burning incense, and two girls gently threw rose petals into the air.
The people sang “Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow” as they processed back into church for a third Benediction.
“Corpus Christi is the celebration of the abiding presence of the loving God as Emmanuel, God-with-us, in order to give collective thanks to our Lord living with us in the Eucharist,” Fr. Mukiibi explained.
“This solemnity gives us an occasion to learn more about the importance and value of His Real Presence, so that we may appreciate the sacrament better and receive maximum benefit from receiving Jesus in Holy Communion,” the priest stated. (32 photos)