170th Anniversary of Corpus Christi Procession

Holy Family Parish in Oldenburg, Indiana, has a lot to celebrate.

On Sunday May 29 parishioners will coordinate the village’s 170th consecutive Corpus Christi Procession, an event so ingrained in local culture that a street marker was erected to explain its origins. "It was first celebrated here it 1846, but originated in 13th-century Germany," it reads. "The solemn and colorful march follows a one-mile route through woods, meadow and village streets."

Knights and Ladies of St. John from Oldenburg and Louisville serve as the color guard for the Blessed Sacrament. "It’s a big thing with the villagers marking the coming of summer," says Pastor David Kobak, who this year will lead the one-mile procession in a golf cart "because of my arthritis".

Walkers gather after the 10 a.m. Mass and pray the rosary as they walk, stopping at seven shrines along the way. "Afterwards, everybody goes over to the firehouse to have a nice lunch," Fr. David says. It endures because "we have a lot of devoted parishioners who are in love with the old traditions. If that procession was ever denied or canceled, there would be an uproar in the village."