The Birth of Jesus is the Greatest Proof of God’s Love for Men
God so loves man that he not only kept an eye on our life from a distance but also wished to live among us, thus he became one with us in Jesus, said Gábor Mohos, head of the committee responsible for the preparation of the 52nd International Eucharistic Congress, with reference to the mystery of Christmas. The auxiliary bishop of Esztergom–Budapest told us about the preparations for and the planned programmes of the world congress, including the three large-scale outdoor holy masses to be celebrated in the week from 13 to 20 September 2020.
– Being the head of the committee responsible for the preparation of the International Eucharistic Congress, you have taken on a huge responsibility. What can you tell us about the progress of the organization of this one-week programme series of world-wide importance?
– The congress is a huge gift to the Hungarian Christian community, however, the organization is a big challenge. I think that, time-wise, we are not doing badly, yet there is still an enormous amount of tasks we must get to grips with. We must work hard in order to have everything in place by September 2020 so that tens of thousands of people may joyfully celebrate together Jesus’ presence among us.
– Do you see any chance that the Holy Father will take part in this event, so important in the life of Catholics?
– The popes did not participate in the last Eucharistic congresses but were represented by legates. It was so in Hungary in 1938 as well. It would be wonderful and we would be extremely happy if the Holy Father came to the 2020 Congress. However, even if he doesn’t come, he will surely send a legate representing him.
– Due to the expected huge interest in the Congress and its religious character, it will be an event of high security risk. Are you planning any measures to ensure the safety of the faithful?
– When organizing such a large-scale event, we must comply with the applicable legislation and act accordingly. That’s exactly what we do: we are in contact with the competent official bodies in order to ensure that the programmes meet all the needs of the participating faithful, therefore we also pay special attention to security issues.
– What will be the key programmes of the world congress?
– The event will be inaugurated by an outdoor holy mass on 13 September at the Puskás Arena. Thousands of children will receive their first holy communion there, and the registration for receiving this sacrament at this holy mass is still open. Another solemn outdoor holy mass will be celebrated on the afternoon of 19 September at Kossuth Square in Budapest, followed by a torchlight procession with the Blessed Sacrament via Andrássy Avenue to Heroes’ Square, where the closing ceremony will be held the following day. From Monday to Friday, a wide range of programmes will take place at Hungexpo: every day will begin with a common prayer session, then bishops from the five continents will give talks, followed by personal testimonies about the faith and the Eucharist. The daily holy mass—to which all the participants are welcome—will be followed by lunch and different optional programmes as well as interesting lectures and presentations, displaying the diversity of the
Church. In the afternoons and evenings, we will also offer foreign participants a wide range of cultural programmes about Hungarian Christian culture, our traditions, and the artistic treasures stemming from them. The entire programme is available on our website, and registration is open both for the programmes and for our newsletter.
– Could you explain to us the real importance of this programme series?
– We are still in the phase of preparation, yet we are already becoming ever more aware of the mystery of the Blessed Sacrament, Christ’s real presence among us. We have talked about the Eucharist in plenty of talks, lectures, recollections, and the number and length of adorations are increasing in many places. We should also realize that more than 80 years have passed since we last had the chance to experience the universal Church and meet people from the five continents here, in Hungary. Finally, this event also gives us the possibility of strengthening our own identity. We should appreciate more our values, which constitute the heritage we have received from our ancestors. We must preserve and enrich them, as well as transmitting them to generations to come.
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Source: Magyar Nemzet