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Priest Illuminates Crucial Need for Eucharistic Processions After Over 1,000 Religious & Laity Attend Event in D.C.

While Sat., May 18, 2024, kicked off the National Eucharistic pilgrimage in four corners of the country, the Catholic Information Center (CIC) executed the second annual Eucharistic procession in the nation’s capital that brought over 1,000 people, including priests, nuns, and the laity.

Father Charles Trullols, the director of the CIC, spoke with ChurchPOP about the presence of Christ in the Eucharist, the need for Eucharistic processions, and the event. 

Father Charles Trullols / Credit: Christina Herrera

A frequently cited 2019  Pew Research study revealed that only 31 percent of adult Catholics believe in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Father Charles explained this could be the result of several key issues. 

“There are different reasons that can explain why so many Catholics don’t believe in Jesus in the Eucharist. One of them is the fact that there are some teachers and professors who should have taught the truth about this reality in our schools, in our own formation, in our own Catechesis that may not have taught it the right way and may have misguided those who were learning about the Eucharist. 

“Another reason is the example and witness that we give as Catholics to the next generation about what we believe the Eucharist is.

“If we really believe the Blessed Sacrament is Jesus Himself– soul, and divinity– then we will show a lot of reverence when we receive Our Lord when we enter a church and we have the Blessed Sacrament in the tabernacle.” 

Catholic Information Center, Facebook

He continues, “The way we genuflect, the way we look at Him, the way we pray, the way we kneel, our body language shows our faith. This is also a way of transmitting the truth about the Eucharist to the next generation, our friends and our acquaintances.

We have to think about our own way in which we have been evangelizing and bringing the truth to those around us by the way we behave in front of the Blessed Sacrament.

“Also, the way we dress when we go to Mass and the way we receive communion at Mass. For many people, they are not to blame because they never got the right information– the right instruction. But we have an opportunity with this Eucharistic Revival in our country to change that and I pray that it is so.” 

Father Charles also offers advice for Catholics who find it difficult to believe in transubstantiation.

“Many times we have difficulty understanding transubstantiation because we don’t have the philosophical or theological concepts clear. So I would say that we would need to read a little bit more deeper in what the Church has always taught in what happens during the consecration in the bread and wine at Mass that become the body and blood of Christ; in which the substance of the bread and wine become the flesh and blood of Christ but the accidents don’t. Those things that can change without changing the substance, don’t change.”

While the country has united in celebration and prayer leading during the Revival, it is important to note the Catholic Church has been the target of several attacks.

According to the USCCB, “at least 327 incidents have occurred across 43 states and the District of Columbia since May 2020.”

With a public procession in DC, there may have been hesitancy among participants for fear of safety. However, Father stated the importance of this procession regardless of intimidation from these attacks.

“Whatever happens in our nation’s capital has big repercussions in our country and the whole world. This is an opportunity for all of us to show our faith and for Jesus to beautify our streets and neighborhoods. When Jesus passes by, He brings brightness, light, truthfulness, and salvation.

“All these attacks in the Church are going to somehow be beautified with the presence of our Lord. Hopefully many souls will be touched by Jesus, by the Eucharist and may reconsider their attitudes toward the Church and toward that person who has died for each one of us and stayed behind in the Eucharist to nourish us and give us the strength we need to go through life and in the end get to Heaven.”

Though the weather showed rain in the forecast, the CIC was well prepared to cover the Eucharist. Father shared the importance and symbol of following Christ at every moment.

Catholic Information Center, Facebook

“Jesus is going to be completely protected. We want to process, in good times and in bad times. We want to follow Jesus in every circumstance. This is a physical showing of our faith and willingness to follow God’s commandments and teachings regardless of the difficulties we may encounter. Or the fact that sometimes in our society we are not well regarded, people oppose us, or oppose God’s love and teachings. So the fact we will be out there processing in the middle of the rain is going to be a witness to our faith, our perseverance, and to our courage. We are going to be asking Jesus to make us stronger in our beliefs and in the way in which we are apostles.”

ChurchPOP took to the streets and spoke with participants during Saturday’s procession. 

Christina Herrera

Mary Margaret, a volunteer with the CIC for this event, stated, “I love the physical example of the presence of God with us. He is always with us everywhere we go and it’s just amazing to share with people a visual representation of that. So many people don’t understand that God is always with us but when we can show them, when we can walk the streets, the commute we take to work every day, it really inspires people and makes them aware that that reality is always with us even when we don’t see it.” 

Sister Mary, All Powerful Intercessor with the Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matará said, “We came out today because the way to change the world is to bring our Lord to them. So we brought our Lord through the streets of DC.”

Christina Herrera

Victoria Perez, another attendee stated, “I wanted to witness our Lord present in our nation’s capital, the most powerful city. And also to be a testament to all of those in the midst of the rain and horrible weather to show that we are here no matter what and we will continue to stand with our Lord every step of the way.”

Franco, a Catholic influencer on TikTok, shared, “I want to help bring witness that God really is fully present here. I love how the CIC has been so determined to make sure that this happens.”

This procession was roughly twice the size of last year’s. 

Father Charles offered words of encouragement to every Catholic hoping to make the pilgrimage to the National Eucharistic Congress in July. 

“Don’t give up. There will be many difficulties in traveling there while you are there because there will be thousands and thousands of people. And there will be some discomfort, some changing of plans but look at this. You are going to be showing with your presence, with your piety, with your prayers, the faith that we have received that goes all the way back to Jesus Himself, to God.

“So those of you who may consider going and are facing some obstacles, don’t give up. Do everything you can to attend the Eucharistic [pilgrimage] so we are all united in Indianapolis, showing the unity of our faith, the beauty of our faith, the sacredness of our faith, and at the same time you will be uplifted and encouraged by all the things you are going to see and experience. We will be able to be a better witness to our society.” 

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