As part of the national preparations for the 2012 Eucharistic Congress, a special Congress Bell will be brought on foot to all 26 dioceses.
7 March 2011
In the RDS in Dublin today Cardinal Seán Brady and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin launched two major initiatives as part of the preparations for the 50th International Congress which takes place in Ireland in 2012.
- the Congress Bell
- a major volunteer drive
The main events of the Congress next year will take place in the RDS, Dublin, beginning with the opening ceremony on 10 June 2012. Over the week 10 – 17 June a programme of liturgical and cultural events, workshops and daily celebration of the Eucharist will culminate in an open air Mass and closing ceremony in Croke Park.
The Secretary General for the Eucharistic Congress Fr Kevin Doran said at today’s launch
“Core to the mission of the Congress is the view that it is a pilgrim journey involving spiritual and pastoral preparation. Each diocese in Ireland has its own organising committee to promote a deepening of understanding for Catholics of the central place of the Eucharist in the life and mission of the Church, a richer celebration of the Eucharistic liturgy and an awareness of the social responsibility that comes with the communion and self-gift of Jesus which we celebrate.”
Next week, on Saint Patrick’s Day, a pilgrimage of the Congress Bell will begin from St Mary’s Pro Cathedral, Dublin, going to St Patrick’s Cathedral in Armagh and it will visit all 26 dioceses of Ireland.
The bell is a symbolic invite to Irish Catholics, and for Christians of other traditions, to join in the call to faith, prayer, reconciliation and mission that is at the heart of the Church’s preparation for the Congress over the next year and a half.
The Congress Bell has its origins in the Dominican Convent in Portstewart in Co Antrim and will be brought on foot from diocese to diocese by teams of volunteers.
It is hoped that the Congress Bell will be a focal point for the prayer in parishes and at places of pilgrimage all over Ireland between now and June 2012.
Organisers are also keen to encourage volunteers to take part not only in the Eucharistic Congress itself but also in the lead up to the main events.
Volunteers are needed in a wide variety of roles including administration, hospitality, translation services and stewarding.
Details are available in seven different languages on www.iec2012.ie
A national Eucharistic committee has been appointed, with one delegate from each diocese, in order to ensure that there is an opportunity for people in every parish in Ireland to be involved both in the pastoral preparation and in the events of the Congress.
Fr. Thomas O’Byrne is the diocesan delegate for Kildare & Leighlin.
If you would like further information on the congress or would like to be involved and/or attend, please feel free to contact him.
Fr. Thomas O’Byrne,
Emo, Portlaoise, Co. Laois.
Tel: (057) 8646517
fax: (057) 8643004