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An International Eucharistic Congress is an international gathering of people aimed at promoting an awareness of the central place of the Eucharist in the life and mission of the Catholic Church. The Roman Ritual De Sacra Communione et de Cultu Mysterii Eucharistici extra Missam defines the Congress as “a pause for commitment and prayer to which a particular Church invites the universal Church”. During this time “the celebration of the Eucharist becomes the center and vortex of all forms of piety, of theological and pastoral reflections, of social commitment”.
Message of Most Rev. Jose S. Palma, DD, Archbishop of Cebu
My dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ:
As we inaugurate this webpage, I also welcome you to the 51st International Eucharistic Congress, which by God’s Providence, is set to be held in Cebu, the Philippines in January 24-31, 2016.
The Filipino people, and in a special way, the people of Cebu, welcomed with great joy the announcement made by His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI in Dublin last year, that the next International Eucharistic Congress will be held in the Philippines. Although we have suffered from two calamities that have affected the region where Cebu is located, the October 15 earthquake in the island of Bohol and the super typhoon which lashed the islands of Samar and Leyte in November 8, our hope remains in the providence of God, whose generosity is clearly manifested in the tons of aid and support the international community has extended our country.
This early, and even as we strive to bring back our country to normalcy, I invite all of you to come and share our experiences of faith, hope and charity. Our country is not so rich in material resources, but what we have is abundant faith, faith that has kept our spirits alive through these trying times. It is this faith that allows me to say in all humility, that “Christ in us, is our hope of glory.”The International Eucharistic Congress Pavilion: A Home Built on Faith
The International Eucharistic Congress Pavilion: A Home Built on Faith
the International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) Pavilion is strong enough to house an estimated number of fifteen thousand delegates from all over the world for the gathering of Catholic leaders. Its main plenary hall has a seating capacity of about the same number as the expected guests. It may only be a concrete structure made by man but with its strong pillars it will be the home of the spiritual family come year 2016.
“I thank God that he gave me the grace to witness the construction of this beautiful building which will also house our future minor seminary,” says Archbishop Emeritus Ricardo Cardinal Vidal during the topping off ceremony of the IEC Pavilion last Wednesday July 15, 2015. Cardinal Vidal explained that when he received his first Holy Communion during the 33rd International Eucharistic Congress that was held in Manila, which was the first instance that the IEC was held in the Philippines, he along with thousands of other children were made to transfer from one building to another, and that this year is the luckiest year because all foreign and local delegates will be under one roof and will be comfortably protected under the roof of the IEC Pavilion.
Archbishop Elect Dennis Villarojo extended his thanks to Mr. Rafaelito Barino andMrs. Fe Barino, owners of Duros Development Corporation, the private company which agreed to finance the project and construct the Pavilion on the grounds of the Archdiocesan seminaries. Neither the Archdiocese nor the IEC will have to spend anything for an agreement was signed with Duros Development Corporation that after the Eucharistic Congress the land will be leased so that the company may recover its investment. “When I said yes, I said yes with conviction, I didn’t have second thoughts so I immediately consulted my husband for my husband is the visionary. For the 25 years in the construction business we have always worked as a family with the board of directors, my brothers and sisters, so in my mind I knew that we will have no problem in finishing this project,” says Fe Barino in her speech during the press conference after the topping off ceremony of the IEC Pavilion.
“This house is built on faith” says Archbishop Elect Dennis Villarojo and indeed with the help of the whole Catholic family the International Eucharistic Congress in 2016 will be a gathering that will awaken the spirit. And with the first step, the completion of the Pavilion, it is certain that the congress is coming into reality.
The IEC Pavilion is merely the symbol of our hopes that on January 2016 Cebu will bring the world together anew and we will meet Jesus Christ in the Eucharist.And like a building that can withstand the earthquakes that shake us, our faith in Christ our Hope of Glory will stand through the test of time.
Source: IEC Website