Rockford Diocese Opens Eucharistic Revival June 19
By Penny Wiegert, Editor
June 2, 2022
In the May 27  issue of The Observer, Bishop David Malloy explained, in his regular column on page 2, that “it is no secret that faith in the Eucharist has diminished today.” That is why the Bishops of the United States are sponsoring a  National Eucharistic Revival. 
The three-year initiative begins at the diocesan level and will start in the Rockford Diocese along with all others in the U.S. on Corpus Christi Sunday, June 19. For the next three years, The Observer and El Observador newspapers and social media sites will carry background, news and events about the national effort. Our coverage of this call to understand and renew our faith through this initiative begins in this issue.
What is the National Eucharistic Revival?
The National Eucharistic Revival, NER, is a three-year initiative sponsored by the Bishops of the United States to inspire and prepare the People of God to be formed, healed, converted, united, and sent out to a hurting and hungry world through a renewed encounter with Jesus in the Eucharist — the Source and Summit of our Catholic faith. The National Eucharistic Revival and National Eucharistic Congress are a direct response to the Holy Father’s call for a “pastoral and missionary conversion which cannot leave things as they presently are” so that the Church in the United States might be “permanently in a state of mission” (Evangelii Gaudium, n. 25).
This Eucharistic movement seeks to bring together clergy, religious, laity, apostolates, movements, and parish and diocesan leaders to spur momentum, collaboration, and lasting impact for the renewal of the Catholic Church in the U.S. over the next three years. Each year will have a strategic focus for formation and missionary discipleship.
Year One (2022): Year of the Diocese
During the first year, the U.S. bishops will be inviting their presbyterates, diocesan teams, and parish leaders to a renewed love for Jesus in the Eucharist by hosting and highlighting diocesan-wide events such as Eucharistic congresses and days of formation centered on the mystery of the Eucharist in the life of the Church.
In the Diocese of Rockford the opening of the Eucharistic revival will begin with 11 a.m. Mass celebrated by Bishop David Malloy at the Cathedral of St. Peter, 1243 N. Church St., Rockford. After the Mass all are invited to join the Eucharistic procession from the Cathedral to the Our Lady of Guadalupe Prayer Garden for moments of adoration of the Blessed Sacrament. The procession will then head back to the Cathedral for Benediction. All Catholics are invited to attend.
Year Two (2023): Year of the Parish
During the Parish Year, pastors will invite their parishioners and staff to become even more truly and deeply Eucharistic communities through small groups, increased exploration of the sacrifice of the Mass, Eucharistic Adoration, catechetical studies on the Real Presence of Christ, parish-sponsored processions, and other activities to enable deeper encounters with Our Lord in the Eucharist. 
Year Three (2024): Year of the Renewal
During the third year, the Church will gather for the first National Eucharistic Congress since 1979 where approximately 80,000 Catholics are anticipated to draw close to Jesus in the Eucharist by way of a pilgrimage to Indianapolis from July 17-21, 2024. The intended fruit of the Congress is to prepare the faithful from around the country to go out to the peripheries of their communities as “Eucharistic missionaries” filled with the flame of divine charity for those around them. 
Father Jonathan Bakkelund, director of the diocesan Office of Divine Worship, is the designated local point person for the implementation of the NER. He will begin writing a monthly column on this initiative in the June 24 issue of The Observer
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