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Diocese undertakes Eucharistic Revival

YOUNGSTOWN — In late 2019, a Pew Study indicated what many long had suspected: Few Catholics, perhaps as low as 30 percent, fully believe in the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist.

This stark reality inspired the Bishops of the United States to action. More than an event or a program, they envisioned a true revival to rediscover the source and summit of the Catholic faith through a deep commitment of prayer, pilgrimage and worship on the part of the entire church in the United States, according to a news release from the Diocese of Youngstown.

Taking its title from the Bread of Life discourse in John’s Gospel, “My flesh for the life of the world,” the Eucharistic Revival is not a step-by-step plan or a series of meetings. It is a grassroots call and a challenge for every Catholic across the United States to rekindle the fire of love and devotion for the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus.

Over three years, every Catholic diocese, parish, school, apostolate and family is invited to be a part of renewing the church by enkindling a living relationship with the Lord in the Holy Eucharist.

This revival launches on the Feast of The Body and Blood of Christ 2022. To begin the Eucharistic Revival in the Diocese of Youngstown, Bishop David Bonnar will celebrate Mass at St. Columba Cathedral at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, with a Eucharistic procession to follow.

Subsequent monthly Masses and processions will follow in each of the counties of the diocese, as well as Holy Hours of Adoration, leading back to the cathedral in June 2023, as the diocese begins a second year focusing on the Eucharist in the parish.

The Rev. John-Michael Lavelle, coordinator of the Eucharistic Revival in the Diocese of Youngstown and the diocese’s vicar for Missionary Discipleship, said that in the diocesan year, “We will travel to all parts of the diocese, united in the Mass, Eucharistic processions, and holy hours — leading us to a deeper appreciation of the presence of Christ in our lives.”

The second year of the Eucharistic Revival has been identified as the Year of Parish Revival and will run from June 2023 until July 2024. It will include efforts to strengthen eucharistic devotion and experience at the parish level.

Lavelle said, “In the early days of our diocese, a book was prepared, titled, ‘The March of the Eucharist,’ which highlighted all the places of worship in which we celebrated the Eucharist — mainly, our parish churches.”

The following is the schedule for the rest of the year for Mass celebrated by Bonnar and a Eucharistic procession immediately after:

• 10:30 a.m. Sunday, St. Columba, Youngstown (Mahoning County);

• 11 a.m. July 10, Christ the Servant Parish, Canton (Stark County)

• Noon Aug. 14, Our Lady of Peace Parish-Mount Carmel, Ashtabula (Ashtabula County);

• 4:30 p.m. Sept. 24, St. Paul Parish, Salem (Columbiana County);

• 11 a.m. Oct. 23, SS. Mary and Joseph Parish, Waren (Trumbull County);

• 11 a.m. Nov. 13, St. Patrick Parish, Kent (Portage County).

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