The annual meeting of Europe’s Eastern Catholic Bishops is to take place this year in Lungro (Italy), at the invitation of His Lordship Mgr Donato Oliverio, Bishop of the Catholic Eparchy of Lungro degli Italo-Albanesi [Italo-Albanians] of continental Italy. The meeting is part of the preparations for the celebrations of the centenary of the establishment of the Eparchy of Lungro, which happened on 13 February 1919 through Pope Benedict XV’s Apostolic Constitution Catholici fideles.
This year, the Bishops of the continent’s Eastern Catholic Churches will discuss the figure of the Bishop, especially with regard to some elements of the new marriage process, and the liturgy, its renewal in faithfulness to the identity of the Eastern Catholic Churches and how it renews the life of men and women. Other issues to be considered are the particular characteristics of the identityof an Eastern Catholic Church; the particular inter-eparchial law, and the contribution of the Italo-Albanian Church to the ecumenical journey.
The meeting will begin the late afternoon of 14 June with the celebration of Vespers in the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas of Myrain Lungro. An opening session will follow, with interventions from Cardinal Leonardo Sandri, Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches; Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, President of CCEE; and His Grace Mgr Emil Paul Tscherrig, Apostolic Nuncio to Italy.
The programme and themes of the subsequent sessions are available on the CCEE website.
The meeting, with the participation of bishops and clerics representing 12 Eastern Catholic Churches in Europe, will be marked by the daily celebration of the Divine Liturgy (Eucharist), testifying to the richness of the different liturgical traditions in the Catholic Church.
The meeting is facilitated by the Council of European Episcopal Conferences (CCEE).
The meeting will end on Sunday 17 June with the celebration of the Divine Liturgy in the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas of Myra.
Information for journalists
The meeting is behind closed doors apart from the introductory session on 14 June, which will take place in the Cathedral of Saint Nicholas of Myra in Lungro. Interviews can be arranged during the breaks, by contacting Thierry Bonaventura – Mobile: +41788516040- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
A news release will be published at the end of the meeting on 17 June. The full programme and list of participants is available at: www.ccee.eu
The meeting will take place at Hotel Ariha (Via Marconi, 59 – 87036).
Within the Catholic Church there are particular Churches, called sui iuris Churchesor Rites, in full communion with the Church of Rome but distinguished from the Latin Catholic Church by their different forms of liturgical worship and popular devotion, sacramental (administration of the sacraments) and canonical (juridical norms) disciplines, terminology and theological traditions.
List of thesui iurisChurches present at the meeting
- Italo-Albanian Church of Italy(dioceses of Lungro and Piana degli Albanesi, in Italy)
- Byzantine-Slavic rite Church in Bulgaria
- Greek-Catholic Church in Belarus
- Greek-Catholic Church in the Czech Republic
- Apostolic Exarchate for Byzantine Rite Catholics of Greece
- Greek-Catholic Church in Kazakhstan
- Greek-Catholic Church of Mukačevo
- Greek-Catholic Church in Romania
- Greek-Catholic Church in Serbia and Montenegro
- Greek-Catholic Church in Slovakia
- Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church(Ukraine, Greta Britain and Ireland, Germany, Italy, Ukrainian communities throughout the world)
- Greek-Catholic Church in Hungary
- Melkite Greek-Catholic Church
- Armenian Catholic Church (Europe)
- Syro-Malabar Church in Great Britain
- Church of the Syro-Catholics in Europe
The first meeting took place in 1997 in the diocese of Hajdúdorog (Hungary) and was promoted by Cardinal Achille Silvestrini, then Prefect of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches, who wanted to create a space where the bishops of those churches which had been partcularly affected by atheist regimes, “may find with ever greater clarity their role in today’s Europe and be loved and respected for their history of loyalty to the Church and to the Pope, paid at a dear price” (from Cardinal Achille Silvestrini’s Introduction to the Acta of the first meeting). Since 2009, these meetings have been faciltated by CCEE.