The procession which passed MIT and Central Square was a site to behold. People were coming out of restaurants--some kneeling on the sidewalks, others blessing themselves, and some just staring in bewilderment. Many of the servers who organized the procession were from Juventutem Boston. That is the Traditional Latin Mass Community of young people. They did an impressive job. It's not easy to keep us priests organized.
The procession ended at St. Paul's in Harvard Square. When we arrived, the church--which I suppose holds about 1000 people--was already filled to capacity. So hundreds of those who walked in procession were left standing on the street outside of St. Paul's.
As I looked out at the congregation, I saw many people from my previous assignment in Beverly. They travelled a good distance to be there. It makes me proud to have been in a parish of people who love the Eucharist so much that they would come to this event. In the procession, I saw many students from Boston University (where I serve as Chaplain). It was so inspiring to see their witness.
The unsung hero of the event, in my opinion, was Fr. Richard Clancy who is the Chaplain at MIT and who is the Director for Catholic Campus Ministry in the Archdiocese of Boston. He was the one who came up with the idea of a Eucharistic Procession. Although he doesn't look for accolades, he deserves some today.
Tonight, I spent several hours with Catholics from all over the Archdiocese of Boston--young and old, students, married people, priests, seminarians, religious men and women, lay people--who all love the Eucharist. That's what being a Catholic is. I'm grateful to have experienced their powerful witness tonight.
(Photos are courtesy of George Martell of the Pilot Media Group0