Catholics take to the streets of Vancouver

first_imgThe sun shone down on the Proto Cathedral of St. James the Greater on Sunday as the voices of a choir emanated onto 12th Street from inside the downtown Vancouver church.Seconds later, altar servers emerged from inside and slowly walked down the front steps. One carried a gold crucifix while others held tall white candles or swung thuribles full of burning incense. Then came the Rev. W.R. Harris carrying the Blessed Sacrament, a piece of bread believed to be consecrated as the body of Christ. As Harris walked, four others shielded him from the sun by holding a processional canopy over his head. They were followed by two choral groups, two trumpet players, children dropping flower petals and a couple hundred members of the church’s congregation. Their walk took the congregation around parts of downtown as they occasionally stopped to pray or sing hymns. It was the first time in roughly 50 years that members of St. James led a Feast of Corpus Christi procession, which celebrates the Eucharist, out into the streets of Vancouver, parishioners said.The Eucharist is based on a long-held belief in Catholicism that the bread and wine received during Mass and other ceremonies take on the true body and blood of Jesus Christ.last_img