Pope declines invitation to Quebec International Eucharistic Congress

Cardinal Marc Oullet, the archbishop of Quebec
Cardinal Marc Oullet, the archbishop of Quebec


Despite the petitions of laymen and Cardinal Marc Ouellet’s request, Pope Benedict XVI will not attend the International Eucharistic Congress held in Quebec City during the city’s 400th anniversary celebrations, the cardinal told a press conference on Thursday.

Cardinal Marc Ouellet, Archbishop of Quebec, had been lobbying for the papal visit for months.  A group of citizens also petitioned the Pope requesting his attendance.

Instead of personally appearing the Pope will send a representative to the congress, which will be attended by 15,000 delegates and 50 cardinals from 60 countries. The Holy Father plans to play a part in the conference via a television uplink.

The congress will culminate in a giant outdoor Mass on the historic Plains of Abraham.