The procession began at Martin Place on a chilly, windy Sunday afternoon Photo: The Catholic Weekly

Sydney: photos of the impressive Corpus Christi procession, the largest since the pandemic

Sydney celebrates the largest Eucharistic procession since the pandemic. They hope to host the International Eucharistic Congress in 2028.

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(ZENIT News / Sydney, 06.04.2024).- In a striking display of faith, more than 15,000 Catholics took to the streets of Sydney for the Corpus Christi Eucharistic Procession, marking the largest religious event in the city since the COVID-19 pandemic. This grand celebration not only underscored the community’s devotion but also highlighted Australia’s bid to host the International Eucharistic Congress in 2028.

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Archbishop Anthony Fisher, OP, led the procession with a message of hope and preparation for the potential congress. «Today, dear friends, you have done what the Council asked and helped prepare this city and country for the event we devoutly hope Pope Francis will grant us in 2028,» he proclaimed.

A Showcase of Faith and Unity

Auxiliary Bishop Richard Umbers expressed pride in the faithful’s public demonstration of their beliefs. «Australia’s aspiration to host an International Eucharistic Congress is no secret, and such a public display of faith certainly adds credibility to our bid,» Bishop Umbers noted, emphasizing the growing enthusiasm for a vibrant Eucharistic culture in Sydney.

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The procession began at Martin Place on a chilly, windy Sunday afternoon. Thousands gathered, enjoying music and camaraderie among parish communities. Father Roberto Keryakos from St. Mary’s Cathedral opened the event with a stirring message: «Our Catholic faith is more beautiful than the world. Jesus Christ is more beautiful than anyone and calls you and me to be holy.»

A Solemn and Joyous Occasion

The event’s climax came with the ringing of bells, signaling the start of the procession led by Archbishop Fisher from George Street. School and parish banners waved over the sea of believers, drawing curious onlookers who watched in reverence. The procession concluded at St. Mary’s Cathedral with adoration, gospel reading, and blessing.

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The procession was a testament to the cultural diversity of Sydney’s Catholic community, featuring large groups of Samoan, Vietnamese, Lebanese, Portuguese, Croatian, and Latin American Catholics. The massive turnout showcased unity and religious fervor, with touching moments like a child reuniting with his parents amidst the crowd.

Daniel Ang, Director of Sydney’s Centre for Evangelisation, emphasized the procession’s broader impact. «These processions ferment our largely disenchanted world. They remind us that people come to and deepen their faith through varied, overlapping experiences and influences,» Ang stated.

A Call to Transformation

Archbishop Fisher concluded with a powerful reflection on the procession’s significance: «Today, dear people, you have publicly acknowledged God. You have been very public witnesses to hope and unity. Just as a priest calls upon the Spirit to transform the elements of bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ, you have exercised your priestly power as baptized believers to invoke the Spirit over this city to transform it into the kingdom of God.»

The Corpus Christi procession in Sydney was not only a celebration of faith but also a bold statement of unity and hope for the future. It bolstered Australia’s bid to host the International Eucharistic Congress and reaffirmed the Catholic community’s commitment to their spiritual mission.

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