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Catholic Voice

January 24:
An International Congress on
the Eucharist

January 24: From every corner of the planet, to the table
of Divine Sacrifice

January 25:
More than talks

January 26:
Sacred moments,
sacred spaces

January 27:
Gifts and mission

January 30:
And now…


From the top, Archbishop Piero Marini, main celebrant, as Bishop Michael C. Barber, SJ, second photo; the arena in the early morning; dinner and entertainment for the delegates from Oakland; Bishop Barber offers a donation to the ICE; at left, even the signs are correct — the International Eucharistic Congress is well organized, down to the last detail.

Rev. Alexander Q. Castillo

January 25, 2016
More than talks

Anybody who has had the opportunity to attend a worldwide event of the Church knows that beyond the talks and the public celebrations, there is much more going on. That is the case here in Cebu.

Every morning, we have a Catechesis and a Testimony. Today’s testimony was given by Cardinal Zen, bishop emeritus of Hong Kong who has led many efforts for justice, solidarity and peace. You could feel the power of his words, not rooted in human eloquence, but in the strength given to him by Christ, especially in the Sacrament of the Eucharist.

But for the Oakland delegates, the highest point of the day was the celebration of the Eucharist. As the initial procession came in, we discovered that our bishop was chosen to be one of the main concelebrants. Later on, he told us “I think it was the Lord given the Diocese of Oakland a special place in the Congress, and I place all your intentions, as well the intentions of all the faithful of our diocese on the altar.”

And just in case we were missing something, on Jan. 25 we had an amazing dinner, carefully prepared and organized by the Filipino priests of our diocese. About a hundred delegates were present, and we were also honored by the presence of the Archbishop of Saigon (Vietnam). During the program, Bishop Barber gave a donation to the Secretariat of the Congress, fruit of the efforts of the Filipino priests of the diocese, who raised the money.

Yes, this is definitely much more than talks … and wait until Jan. 26, we have a BIG surprise.

Maraming Salamat po.

Rev. Alexander Castillo
Special to The Catholic Voice

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