By Fr. Mike Boutin
Photo: "Corpus Christi Procession" from the Breviary of Martin of Aragon
Next Sunday, June 14th, is the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, formerly known as Corpus Christi. Check out these websites to learn more about this feast:
The liturgical season is now Ordinary Time: not as in contrast to "extraordinary" time, since all time in Christ is extraordinary. Instead, we call it Ordinary Time, because the Sundays are "counted" (think ordinal numbers). The color for Ordinary Time is green, but the first two Sundays of Ordinary Time are special solemnities (Trinity on 6/7 and Body and Blood of Christ on 6/14), and so the liturgical color is white or gold. The solemnity of the Feast of the Body and Blood of Christ has been traditionally celebrated on the Thursday after the Feast of the Pentecost, but is now celebrated on the Sunday after the Feast of the Trinity.
"Lauda Sion" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lauda_Sion written by St. Thomas Aquinas is prescribed as the sequence to be sung today after the Second Reading and before the singing of the Alleluia.
It is strongly recommended that at the end of the last Mass of the day, the liturgy concludes with a Eucharistic procession through the streets of the community, so that we make visible what we believe: that we eat His body and drink His blood so that we might bring Him out into the world.
In some countries, people make elaborate flower carpets for the outdoor Eucharistic procession. Take a look at how truly beautiful they are: http://www.tenerifetimes.com/content/view/318/1/
Here are the readings for next Sunday: http://www.usccb.org/nab/readings/061409.shtml
Here are a few good sites for exegesis (an explanation of what the biblical texts are trying to say):
Preachers, any good homily starters for the Feast of Corpus Christi? How do you share with your people that the bread and wine are changed by the Holy Spirit to be the body and blood of Christ so that, when we eat this bread and drink this cup, we might be changed to be the Body and Blood of Christ poured out in loving service to the world? How is our Catholic understanding of the Eucharist not just a static "thing" but a living Real Presence?
General Liturgical Resources:
cf Living Liturgy 2009 http://www.litpress.org/Detail.aspx?ISBN=9780814627464
Companion to the Calendar: http://www.amazon.com/Companion-Calendar-Mary-Ellen-Hynes/dp/1568540116
General Preaching Links: