MANILA, April 26, 2013— The Archdiocese of Cebu has set the date for an international assembly of Catholic pilgrims, lay people, and Church leaders in Cebu City.
Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma said the International Eucharistic Congress (IEU) will be held on May 23 to 29, 2016.
Thousands of delegates from different countries are expected to attend the occasion with the theme “Christ in You: Our Hope of Glory”.
Palma said that meetings of the country’s theologians have been on going to prepare the topics that will be discussed in the historical event.
The archbishop has just arrived in the Philippines last week after attending the meeting of the committee of the IEU in Rome.
In the meeting, Palma also relayed to the committee their invitation for Pope Francis to come to Cebu City for the Congress.
If the papal visit pushes through, Francis will be the third pope to visit the Philippines after Pope Paul VI in 1970 and Pope John Paul II in 1981 and 1995.
Like the Olympic Games, the International Eucharistic Congress is only held every four years.
The Congress aims to promote awareness of the Eucharist in the life and mission of the Church, to improve understanding and celebration of the liturgy, and to draw to the social dimension of the Eucharist.
The last time the Philippines hosted the IEC was in 1937 in Manila during the time of Pope Pius XI. (Roy Lagarde)