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At 10 o’clock this morning, I was one of 48 pilgrims celebrating the Mass of Corpus Christi in the Church of Santo Spirito in Sassia (Holy Spirit in Saxony) close to St Peter’s in Rome. At the time it was bright and sunny, 28 degrees in fact, but now I am sitting at my desk in Hereford, England (UK) where it is dark, damp and a miserable 12 degrees!

This was the final day of a pilgrimage that brought together Christians from three parishes in Hereford and during the Mass, Deacon Eddie Wyman reminded us that on this special feast day, we celebrate not only the institution of the Eucharist by Christ on Holy Thursday, but the fact that we are all members of the Body of Christ.

Part of the purpose of the pilgrimage for me was to be reminded that whilst we in rural Herefordshire often feel isolated form the rest of our diocese – which incidentally is in Wales and we are also quite a distance from the See of Peter in Rome, we are nonetheless, integral members of the Church.

The human body is composed of many different parts , each playing its part. If one part is poorly, the whole body suffers. So it is with the Church. If we are not fully playing our part in it, whether that is bringing up our children in the faith, or responding to a vocation to the priesthood and religious life, or even being the Pope, then the body will not function properly as a whole.

On this great feast, ponder on what it means to be part of that great mystical body of the Church; reflect on your part on it and pray that the Holy Spirit will fill you with all his gifts so that you may proclaim the Good News to the whole world, through your life, your actions, your words or in whatever way you have been called.

Happy feast day!