As we prepare to celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper, today, Holy Thursday, the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference wish to announce that a National Eucharistic Congress will be held in Knock on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 September 2015.
The National Congress will be an opportunity to reflect on the fruits of the 50th International Eucharistic Congress, which was held in Dublin in 2012, and a spiritual preparation for the next International Congress, scheduled to take place in Cebu, Philippines, in January 2016. The context in which our National Congress will be celebrated includes the Synod of Bishops on the “Vocation and Mission of the Family” which will take place in the Vatican during October, as well as the Year of Consecrated Life.
It is hoped that a pilgrim group from Ireland will participate in the 51st International Eucharistic Congress in Cebu. Details will be published after Easter.
· The last National Eucharistic Congress in Ireland was celebrated at the Marian Shrine in Knock during June 2011 and it marked the one year countdown to the ‘50th International Congress 2012’ in Dublin.
· Knock Shrine: The story of Knock began on the 21 August 1879 when Our Lady, Saint Joseph and Saint John the Evangelist appeared at the south gable of Knock Parish Church. This miraculous apparition was witnessed by fifteen people, young and old. Knock is an internationally recognised Marian Shrine and was visited by Saint John Paul II as part of his 1979 papal pilgrimage to Ireland. During his visit, which coincided with the Shrine’s centenary year, the late pope celebrated Mass at the Shrine and addressed the sick, their helpers and pilgrimage directors. Archbishop Michael Neary, Archbishop of Tuam, is the custodian of the Marian Shrine and Father Richard Gibbons is parish priest of Knock and rector of the shrine. Please see: www.knock-shrine.ie
For media contact: Catholic Communications Office Maynooth: Martin Long 00353 (0) 86 172 7678 and Brenda Drumm 00353 (0) 87 310 4444