POPE FRANCIS will celebrate Mass for the Solemnity of Corpus Christi (also known as the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ) at the Altar of the Chair in St Peter’s Basilica on Sunday, 14 June.
The liturgy will conclude with the exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction.
Only a small number of people will be allowed to participate in the liturgy with the Holy Father. The Mass will be streamed live beginning at 9:45 a.m. Rome time.
Last year, Pope Francis presided at the Mass for Corpus Christi from the steps of Santa Maria Consolatrice Church in Rome’s Casal Bertone neighbourhood.
The previous year, the Holy Father celebrated the Solemnity in the square in front of the parish of Santa Monica in Ostia, outside the city of Rome.
The Solemnity of Corpus Christi dates back to the 13th century.
In Belgium, following the mystical experiences of Saint Juliana de Cornillon, a local feast dedicated to the Most Holy Eucharist was established in Liège in 1247.
Several years later, in 1263, a Bohemian priest on pilgrimage to Italy was afflicted by doubts about the Real Presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.
While celebrating Mass in the town of Bolsena, he experienced a Eucharistic miracle, when a few drops of blood were shed by the broken Host after the consecration.
The very next year, in 1264, Pope Urban IV extended the feast of Corpus Christi to the whole Church.