Pope Francis on September 20, 2020, had special words for the pastors and faithful of Hungary who had planned the International Eucharistic Congress for the past week.
As the Holy Father explained after his Sunday Angelus address, the pandemic forced the delay of the event until next year. However, organizers were able to have some “virtual” presentations in recent days.
“According to the plans made before the pandemic, the International Eucharistic Congress should have taken place in Budapest in the last few days. And so, I wish to extend my greetings to the pastors and the faithful of Hungary and to all of those who were expecting with faith and with joy this ecclesial event,” the Pope said. “The Congress has been postponed to next year from 5 to 12 September, still in Budapest. Spiritually united, we are following this journey of preparation, finding in the Eucharist the source of the Church’s life and mission.”
Throughout the history of the Eucharistic Congresses since 1881, a forced break was only due to the First and the Second World Wars, while after the latter one no Catholic World Meeting of such was organized until 1952. Now, this is the very first time that a pandemic interfered and blocked the events planned. It has been 80 years since Hungary hosted the event.