The International Eucharistic Congress (NEK) scheduled to be held in Budapest from Sept. 5 to 12 will feature holy masses, predications and cultural and family programmes, the organisers said on Thursday. The congress’s opening mass will be celebrated at Heroes’ Square, Gábor Mohos, the head of the NEK secretariat, told a press conference.
On Sept. 11, Cardinal Péter Erdő, the head of the Hungarian Catholic Church, will celebrate mass, followed by a procession to Heroes’ Square, he said. Statio Orbis, the mass closing the Congress, will be celebrated by Pope Francis at Heroes’ Square on Sept. 12. The ceremony is scheduled to begin at 11:30am and will feature the 120-member orchestra of the Hungarian State Opera with a choir of 2,000, Mohos said. He said the Congress’s main programmes can be attended free of charge, but he advised those wishing to follow events closely at the site to register in advance.
Coinciding with the Eucharistic Congress, religious programmes with speakers participating from five continents will be organised at the Hungexpo exhibition centre from Sept. 6 to 10, Kornél Fábry of the NEK secretariat said. Speakers include Archbishop Piero Marini, president of the Eucharistic Congress’ Pontifical Council, Cardinal Andrew Yom Soo Jung of Seoul, Moyses Louro Azevedo Filho, the leader of the Shalom Catholic Community in Brazil, and José Palma, the archbishop of Cebu.
The International Eucharistic Congress was originally scheduled to be held in September last year but had to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. Budapest is hosting the event for a second time. It hosted the 34th congress in May 1938 when the closing mass was attended by half a million people in Heroes’ Square.