Croke Park

Croke Park open-air mass to close Eucharistic Congress in Dublin


Croke Park

Up to 80,000 Mass goers at Croke Park in Dublin will hear a message from the Pope to Irish Catholics on Sunday afternoon.

The 50th Eucharistic Congress will close with the sell-out service at the home of the GAA.

Mass goers will hear a special message from Pope Benedict which will be delivered by Papal Legate, His Eminence Marc, Cardinal Ouellet.

The Papal Legate will celebrate the closing Mass which has been described by organisers as "a time of pause or statio and an opportunity for people to come to terms with what it means to celebrate, receive and live the Eucharist which has been the theme of the 2012 Congress."

The televised mass will bring the curtain down on the week long Congress which has been attended by tens of thousands of Irish and international pilgrims.

However, the final day crowd is small fry compared to the million people who attended an open air mass in the Phoenix Park when Dublin last hosted the Eucharistic Congress in 1932.

Sunday’s closing event will be hosted by well known broadcasters Joe Duffy and Eileen Dunne and will feature a range of artists including international stars The Priests, Fuaimlaoi, award-winning soprano Celine Byrne and world-renowned composer Fr Liam Lawton as well as the RTE concert orchestra.

Father Eugene O’Hagan of The Priests told the Irish Independent: “Singing at the closing Mass will be a thrilling but daunting experience.

“The IEC comes at a critical time in people’s lives in Ireland. We will be with so many pilgrims and it will be a unique experience for us and we’ll be that little bit more nervous and anxious to give of our very best.”

The 2012 Eucharistic Congress featured 160 workshops including talks, addresses, group reflections, meetings, concerts and plays.


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