05/30/2005, 00.00
IRAQ – YEAR OF THE EUCHARIST
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A week to celebrate the Year of the Eucharist in Mosul diocese

Prayers and moments of reflections are held in every parish. "People feel the need for a God who is close," says Chaldean bishop.

Mosul (AsiaNews) – The Chaldean diocese of Mosul is organising a week of celebrations for the Year of the Eucharist that will last from the Feast of the Corpus Domini (May 26) to that of the Holy Heart (June 3), and will focus on a theme chosen by Bishop Paulos Faraj Rahho: "The Eucharist, a meeting with the Risen Christ".

Every day, moments of reflections on the value of the Eucharist are held on a rotating basis in the different religious centres and parishes of the city. On each occasion, the Most Holy sacrament is exhibited and taken in procession.

"The purpose of the initiative," the Bishop explained, "is not theological". For Bishop Rahho, the strongest need people have is "to see the signs of the living presence of Jesus in their daily lives, to see—as the Pope said yesterday—how He wishes to share our fate to the point of being one of us".

The meetings organised this week by priests, monks and nuns focus on the search for signs of a "God [who is] close to us"

Bishop Rahho himself will preside over tomorrow's celebrations at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. On that occasion, as he told AsiaNews, he will reflect upon the "centrality" of the Sunday service and the "need for the Christian presence".

"Sunday is a source of strength for Christians, but it is necessary that once the mass is over we commit that strength to our fellow human beings"

So far, the faithful have come to such meetings in great numbers. The last meeting is scheduled to take place in the St George Monastery which is "bigger and safer".

The Chaldean diocese of Mosul has over 25,000 faithful divided in 9 parishes. They are served by 11 diocesan priests, 8 men religious and 20 women religious.

The small towns of Talkef and Karamles also fall under the jurisdiction of Mosul.

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