Pope Francis has confirmed his plans to visit Hungary on September 12 for the closing Mass of the 52nd International Eucharistic Congress.
On Monday, while aboard the plane returning to Rome from Iraq, Pope Francis confirmed that he will be visiting Budapest’s Heroes’ Square to attend the International Eucharistic Congress. He said that the visit will not include a tour around the country. (WATCH: Pope Francis Leaves Uplifting Message to Catholics in Iraq)
The Pope’s visit to Hungary is just one of his many scheduled visits to different countries this year. As his papal trips to Indonesia, East Timor, and Papua New Guinea have all been canceled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pope is expected to push through with these Apostolic Journeys this 2021.
International Eucharistic Congress
The International Eucharistic Congress was started in France in 1881. The event, which aims to offer a witness to the Real Presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist and promote a better understanding of the liturgy and the Eucharist in the life of the Church, is held every four years.
Last year, the 52nd International Eucharistic Congress was put on hold due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It was moved to this year, September 5 to 12, and will be held in Hungary’s capital, Budapest. (Read: Pope Francis to Celebrate Mass for 500 Years of PH Christianity)
Cardinal Péter Erdő, archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, said the “visit of the Holy Father is a great joy for the archdiocese and the entire episcopal conference, and it can give us all comfort and hope in these difficult times.”
He added that the purpose of this year’s congress was summed up by the official prayer, which says that the event seeks to “serve the spiritual renewal of our community, cities, nation, Europe, and the world.” (Read: A Look Into the Pope’s Relationship With World Leaders)
Meanwhile, Budapest’s liberal mayor Gergely Karacsony said in a Facebook post on Monday that it is “a pleasure and an honor” that the city will receive a visit from Francis.