NEWS

It's taken me about three days to get my bearings here at the Eucharistic City, the new name for the Expo City grounds for the duration of the 49th International Eucharistic Congress here in Quebec City

Rain or applause?

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On the far end of the Pepsi Coliseum here in Quebec City, a white tent houses the media room for the International Eucharistic Congress. We have internet hook ups, a bank of computers for common use, tables with fresh flowers and a big screen TV to watch proceedings inside the Coliseum.

This just in from head office

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Pope Benedict XVI sent his regards and blessings Wednesday, June 18, to the 12,000 or so pilgrims gathered here in Quebec City for the International Eucharistic Congress. Below is the text of his message from the Vatican Information Service.

The Eucharist around the world

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{mosimage}QUEBEC CITY - Several cardinals from around the world gave the status of church life in their countries and regions at the 49th International Eucharistic Congress.

"The Eucharist finds in Africa very favourable soil," with people who believe in God and are open to God, Cardinal Theodore-Adrien Sarr of Dakar, Senegal, told thousands of pilgrims in a Quebec stadium.

Your TV eye on the Eucharistic Congress

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News is flowing like a river, as they say, from the International Eucharistic Congress here in a very wet Quebec City (it stopped raining long enough yesterday just to dry up the sidewalks for the next deluge). And much of that news is flowing to the TV world via Canada's Salt+Light TV.

Political action needed to end food crisis

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{mosimage}QUEBEC CITY - Cardinal Marc Ouellet urged a concerted effort by governments and the United Nations to solve a world food crisis that has seen the prices of rice and corn double and triple in recent weeks.

During his homily June 16 while celebrating the Eucharist at the 49th International Eucharistic Congress in Quebec, Ouellet noted that poor people are unable to buy these necessities at the exorbitant prices they are now going for.

Christ lives in the Eucharist

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{mosimage}QUEBEC CITY  - When people pause and question the purpose of their lives, they "yearn for a spiritual answer," said Slovakian Cardinal Jozef Tomko at the opening Mass of the 49th International Eucharistic Congress.

You’ll know they are pilgrims by their backpacks

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The 49th International Eucharistic Congress underway in Quebec City is a monumental feat of organization. About 11,000 pilgrims have registered for the event. The main venue is the Expo Cité grounds, a vast conglomeration of buildings and grounds that are geared for big events like the annual agricultural exhibition. It is vast enough to accommodate the huge traffic in buses, taxis and crowds on foot.

Apology opens door to new relations with First Nations

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - With an apology from the Government of Canada to former students of Indian residential schools, the nation has opened itself up to forging a new relationship with its First Nations people, said Archbishop Gerard Pettipas.

“This is saying we want a new relationship with our First Nations people,” said the Grouard-McLennan archbishop, who represented the 50 Catholic entities — dioceses and religious orders — involved in the 2006 Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement, a $2.2 billion package that has dispensed “common experience payments” averaging $25,000 to every student. The Catholic entities are expected to contribute $80 million of the $120 million the churches agreed to pay, both  in cash and in counselling, rehabilitation and reconciliation services.

Vatican offers morality, macroeconomics of food crisis

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{mosimage}VATICAN CITY - As world leaders were meeting in Rome to work out a response to the global food crisis, the Vatican weighed in on two levels — morality and macroeconomics.

Pope Benedict XVI laid out the moral principles in a message June 3 to the World Food Security Summit, saying that hunger and malnutrition were unacceptable in a world that has sufficient levels of agricultural production and resources.

Canadians keen to support Vatican Museums

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{mosimage}TORONTO - In his first visit to Canada, Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, president of the pontifical commission for Vatican City State, thanked Canadians for their financial support of Vatican City art and artifacts.

He joined the Canadian chapter of the Patrons of the Arts in the Vatican Museums and Canadian church officials in Toronto for a reception at the home of members Peter and Lydia Sharpe June 10.