Sydney Catholics responsibly – mostly youth – gathered to adore the Blessed Sacrament in accordance to social distancing rules in parishes on 14 June – the Sunday of the feast of Corpus Christi.
Due to Covid-19 public gathering restrictions postponing the annual Corpus Christi procession of thousands through the heart of Sydney, Archbishop Anthony Fisher OP encouraged local parish devotion in lieu of the postponement.
The significant presence of young Catholics – such as at St Joachim’s in Lidcombe – sprang from a yearning for the Sacramental presence that many are missing in lockdown.
yearning of young people for the sacraments
“For many this was the first adoration since the Covid outbreak,” said Sydney Catholic Youth’s Elizabeth Pasion, who attended the night. “To be able to celebrate the night on the vigil of Corpus Christi was really special.”
SCY Director Chris Lee, who helped regulate the numbers of those in attendance, said approximately 70 people adored the Blessed Sacrament on rotation throughout the evening.
“The night went great. It showed the yearning of young people for the sacraments in spite of the distance from it during Covid” he told The Catholic Weekly.
Sydney Archdiocesan Vocations Promoter Fr Epeli Qimaqima encouraged adorers in their practice of Eucharistic devotion, urging them to love one another through the example of Venerable Carlo Acutis.
Acutis was a 21st century Italian teenager who combined Eucharistic devotion with love for his contemporaries and the poor as well as computer skills in creating one of the first websites dedicated to cataloguing Eucharistic miracles.
Acutis died aged 15 in 2005 from Leukaemia and is due to be beatified in October by Pope Francis.
“Carlo’s life might help us appreciate what we are doing here tonight being in the presence of Our Lord in the Eucharist.The Eucharist was his highway to heaven,” said Fr Epeli.
“He did not keep Jesus to himself. He told others about Him including his closest mates and showed a care for the poor. If we are to bring our friends back to God we must be able to see God through others. This we can learn through adoration in the Eucharist.”