11 November 2010
Pope Benedict meets Archbishop Martin and Eucharistic Congress Team
Pope Benedict this morning met with Archbishop Diarmuid Martin and members of the organising committee of the 50th Eucharistic Congress, which will be held in Ireland in 2012.
During the past few days a delegation from the Congress Organising Committee, led by Archbishop Martin, has been participating in an international gathering in Rome, hosted by the Pontifical Committee for the International Eucharistic Congresses.
The Irish delegation presented the preliminary arrangements for the Eucharistic Congress to seventy delegates nominated by Bishops’ Conferences from all five continents.
This morning in the Sala Clementina of the Vatican Apostolic Palace, the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience the participants in the Plenary Assembly of the Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses.
Addressing the delegation, His Holiness expressed the hope that the preparations in Ireland for the International Eucharistic Congress would help with the renewal of the Irish Church.
Pope Benedict said “your Assembly has paid great attention to this event, which is also part of the modernisation programme of the Church in Ireland. The theme, recalls the centrality of the Eucharistic Mystery for the growth of the life of faith and every authentic process of Church renewal”.
Pope Benedict also remarked that this week’s meeting falls on the 50th anniversary of the Eucharistic Congress in Munich, Bavaria, which marked a turning point in understanding these ecclesial events, and which the Pope said “I had the pleasure of attending that assembly in person, as a young professor of theology”. In addition, he said the 2012 Congress in Ireland will have a jubilee character, as it will be the 50th Congress and it will also be 50 years since the opening of the Second Vatican Council.
The Eucharistic Congress will be hosted by the Archdiocese of Dublin on behalf of the whole Irish Church. The theme of the 2012 Congress is “Communion with Christ and one another” Pastoral planning and preparations are well under way throughout Ireland.
Further details at www.iec2012.ie
Notes to Editors:
A Eucharistic Congress is an international gathering of people which aims to:
- promote an awareness of the central place of the Eucharist in the life and mission of the Catholic Church
- help improve understanding and celebration of the liturgy
- draw attention to the social dimension of the Eucharist.
These aims are achieved through
- a programme of pastoral preparation in the years leading up to the Congress
- a programme of liturgical and cultural events, lectures and workshops over the course of one week every four years.
- The most recent Congresses were held in Quebec in 2008 and Guadalajara (Mexico) in 2004.
The following is the full text of the communique issued today by the Vatican Information Service:
EUCHARISTIC CONGRESSES CONTRIBUTE TO NEW EVANGELISATION
VATICAN CITY, 11 NOV 2010 (VIS) – Today in the Vatican, Benedict XVI received participants in the plenary assembly of the Pontifical Committee for International Eucharistic Congresses, who have completed preparations for the next congress, which will take place in the Irish capital Dublin in 2012.
“International Eucharistic Congresses already have a long history in the Church”, the Holy Father noted. “They highlight the universal dimension of celebration. Celebration is, in fact, always a feast of faith around the Eucharistic Christ, the Christ of the supreme sacrifice for humanity, in which not only the faithful from a particular Church or nation participate, but, insofar as possible, from all over the world. It is the Church that gathers around her Lord and God”.
“The task of Eucharistic Congresses, especially at the current time, is also that of making a special contribution to new evangelisation, promoting mystagogical evangelisation which is accomplished in the school of the prayerful Church, on the basis of the liturgy and through the liturgy. But each Congress also contains a new evangelising impulse in a more strictly missionary sense, so much so that the binomial term ‘Eucharist-mission’ has become part of the guidelines suggested by the Holy See”.
The Holy Father completed his remarks with some liturgical-pastoral advice. “It is important”, he said, “that each Eucharistic Congress should, in accordance with the reforming spirit of the Council, involve and integrate both ‘extra missam’ expressions of Eucharistic worship which have their roots in popular devotion, and associations of faithful which, in various ways, draw inspiration form the Eucharist. All forms of Eucharistic devotion, also recommended and encouraged by the Encyclical ‘Ecclesia de Eucharistia’ and the Post-Synodal Exhortation ‘Sacramentum caritatis’, must be harmoniously brought together in a Eucharistic ecclesiology oriented towards communion”.
VIS 20101111 (300)