Cebu City (Agenzia Fides) - The Eucharist has a strong social dimension and requires a "fight against poverty and cruelty": this is what Cardinal Charles Maung Bo, Archbishop of Yangon, Myanmar said, who was sent as a representative of the Holy Father to the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC), being held from January 24 to 31 in Cebu City in central Philippines.
As reported to Fides, Cardinal Bo described widespread malnutrition and hunger in the world as "mass genocide", and has linked the Eucharist to justice, recalling "a world that produces more weapons, and more than half a billion people do not have enough food". "The Eucharist is a beacon for human dignity and for the poor.
No other religion elevates the poor at this level", remarked the Cardinal.
The Eucharistic Week in Cebu, entitled "Christ in you, our hope of glory", predicts a turnout of 12,000 participants during the different days and celebrations. "Politicians are invited to attend the 51st International Eucharistic Congress here, but only as pilgrims. This is not the occasion for electioneering", said Mgr. Joseph Tan, Executive Secretary of the Communications Office of the Congress.
"The Catholic Church is a church for all people", said theologian Fr. Father Gerard Francisco P. Timoner, OP, Provincial of the Dominicans in the Philippines. "It is a demonstration of the universality of the Church, and how the Eucharist really unites us in a very concrete way", he added. Fr. Timoner stressed that "the grace of the Eucharist is hampered when there is division, in fractures that are found in families, communities and society", and the Sacrament "gives new grace to rediscover and live unity." (PA) (Agenzia Fides 25/01/2016)