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Congress on June 20, 27

The Archdiocese of Manila will hold a Liturgy Congress on two succeeding Saturdays, gathering more than 11,000 lay liturgical ministers from its parishes, shrines and chapels

The Congress, organized by the Archdiocese’s Ministry for Liturgical Affairs, will be held on June 20, 2009 for the District of Manila, and on June 27 for the District of Makati, which also includes the cities of Mandaluyong, Pasay, and San Juan. The Congress starts at 8 am on each day and will be capped by the Eucharistic celebration at 4 pm.

The lay liturgical ministry includes all those who serve in the Church's liturgical activities, specifically the celebration of the Mass. These are the Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion, the Lectors and Commentators, Altar Servers, Choir, Collectors and Greeters and the Mother Butler's guild. The Congress is aimed at further revitalizing their spirit of service to the Church and also deepening their formation as ministers with a special role and function in the Church.

In time for the Congress Manila Archbishop Gaudencio B. Cardinal Rosales has released a pastoral letter on the Sunday Celebration of the Eucharist, enitled, "Without Sunday, We Cannot Live." The letter outlines the theology and spirituality of the Sunday Mass, and gives specific instructions of the conduct of the priests, the lay liturgical ministers and the faithful, in the proper celebration of the Mass. The 32-page pastoral letter is being distributed to all parish priests and lay liturgical ministers in the archdiocese for their guidance and compliance.

The Liturgical Congress on both Saturdays will have talks by Fr. Godwin Tatlonghari, Minister in charge of Extraordinary Ministers of Holy Communion and the Lectors and Commentators, and Fr. Genaro Diwa, head of the Ministry of Liturgical Affairs. There will be a panel discussion on the concerns and experiences of lay liturgical ministers to be moderated by Fr. Jason Laguerta, head of the Vocations Office of the Archdiocese and Sr. Bubbles Bandojo of the Religious of the Cenacle.

Cardinal Rosales will open the congress with a video message. The closing Mass will be presided by Fr. Anscar Chupungco, OSB, director of the Paul VI Institute of Liturgy in Malaybalay, Bukidnon.