Procession to launch
Eucharistic Revival

A procession of about 300 Catholics accompanying the Body of Christ traveled down Fifth Street toward the Cathedral of the Assumption June 6, 2021. It was the first such large-scale diocesan procession in recent history. (Record File Photo by Ruby Thomas)

On this Father’s Day, June 19, the church in the United States is asking Catholic families to spend part of the day renewing their focus on the heavenly Father, and his son in the Eucharist.

The day falls this year on the feast of the Body and Blood of Christ and on that day, dioceses around the nation will host Corpus Christi processions. In the Archdiocese of Louisville, the procession will start at the Cathedral of the Assumption after a noon Mass.

“The Eucharist is at the very heart of our faith,” noted Archbishop Shelton J. Fabre in an interview about the revival. “It is the Real Presence of Jesus Christ, how the Lord strengthens us to do everything he has entrusted us to do.”

And we are called to share the Eucharist with others, he said. The Corpus Christi procession provides a literal way to do so.

“We are called to take Christ to the world,” said the archbishop. The procession “is a manifestation of how we are called to bring Christ to the world, as we take the Eucharistic Lord to the streets, we take the Word of the Lord into the world to all the places we go, as well.”

While the Eucharistic Revival begins with the procession, the call for a renewed focus on the Eucharist will continue for the next three years. The first year — 2022-2023 — will be a diocesan-focused year. The following year, parishes will be asked to lead the way. For the third year, the Eucharistic Revival will be a national effort centered on the National Eucharistic Congress in July 2024 in Indianapolis.

At the end of those three years, focus on the Eucharist doesn’t end, said Dr. Karen Shadle, who serves on the Archdiocese of Louisville’s Eucharistic Revival working group.

“I see this as something we will always do,” said Shadle, who is the director of the archdiocese’s Office of Worship. The Eucharist “is who we are and we need to be reminded as Catholics the Eucharist is the center of everything we do.”

Shadle said she hopes the Eucharistic Revival becomes “a process of falling in love or falling in love again with the Eucharist.”

“Some people have never had a transformative experience with the Eucharist. For some people, it’s a habit they formed. Some of us have never had the feeling that Jesus is there with us,” she said.

“That’s why this is so great,” said Shadle. “It’s an opportunity; it’s a revival. It’s turning the pilot light on that sparks our love and our joy.”

And the June 19 procession, she said, is an outward way to mark the beginning.

The Corpus Christi Procession will depart the cathedral after the noon Mass. The liturgy’s concluding rites will begin the procession. Those who don’t attend the Mass at the cathedral may gather in the park across the street from the cathedral at the corner of Muhammad Ali and Fifth Street.

The route will travel several blocks in downtown Louisville and return to the cathedral.

Adoration will follow the procession and Benediction will conclude the services at 3 p.m. A reception with ice cream will follow in the plaza outside the cathedral.

For more information about the Eucharistic Revival, visit www.eucharisticrevival.org.

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