Solidarity Statement to the 51st International Eucharistic Congress<!
We, from the ranks of oppressed and marginalized, join the global fellowship in the ongoing celebration of the 51st International Eucharistic Congress here in Cebu. More than celebrating, we lock arms with the rest of humanity in renewing our faithfulness to the Eucharistic Commitment for which Jesus suffered and died.
As Cardinal Charles Maung Bo eloquently said in the opening Homily last Sunday, not only does the bread on the altar become the body of Christ, but so do we become one body affirming our faith to the dignity of life when we gather. We become one with the Lord, through His son, the Paschal lamb, in his work of liberation and redemption.
We agree on the immediacy of the Congress’ highest purpose which is to draw attention to the social dimension of the Eucharist in a world held hostage by corporate greed and imperialist idolatry. Indeed, it is difficult to talk of fraternal communion in a country where 70% of the population wallow in extreme want, while a slight segment lavish in naked affluence. It is preposterous to harp on equality when children are turned into sex toys, students deprived of education, workers looted of value of their labor, farmers robbed of their lands, and indigenous people and human rights defenders are executed, with impunity. We can see this scandalous reality right around us.
Yet, the Eucharist shines like a beacon of light in an ocean of hopelessness and pessimism. The Eucharist calls for justice. It demands for righteousness. Truly, “the Eucharist and the poor are inseparable,” as Cardinal Bo asserted.
And here lies the challenge to us, not just to delegates to the 51st International Eucharistic Congress. It is to channel our Eucharistic adoration to commitment to Christ’s mission. It is to bridge what Archbishop Jose Palma referred to as the “dichotomy between worship and life.” It is to transform our faith into action in the service of the anawim, the poor .