by Christopher Howse THE INTERNATIONAL Eucharistic • Congress closed in Lourdes on Thursday with a Mass for 40,(XX) said by Cardinal Bernardin Gamin. the Pope's Legate from Benin. West Africa, who ordained eleven priests during the Final celebrations.
"This Mass,he said. "is linked not only with the final moments of' this great international gathering. It is also a sending forth on mission." To the parents of the ordinands he said: "Let us never forget that the family is and will remain the privileged place where vocations to the priesthood and religious life develop ... All our local churches must, each according to its tradition and culture. always introduce more effectively the apostolate of vocations within the framework of the apostolate of the family.
"There is no Church without the Eucharist. but there is no Eucharist without priests. There can be no Church without priests. So. we are all faced here with a crucial question, brothers and sisters: how are we preparing for the recruitment of new priests?'
• A hid for peace in South American came from Cardinal Aramburu of Argentina ' and Archbishop Valenzuela of Chile when they sent a joint telegram from the Congress to the presidents of both countries in an effort to smooth friction in the territorial dispute over the Beagle Channel which has brought the countries close to war.
"Pastors and faithful of sister nations Argentina and Chile, united in one heart at International Eucharistic Congress send your Excellency and people fraternal greetings, imploring Mary Queen of Peace at the Grotto in Lourdes for powerful intercession for happy and rapid success in Papal mediations," the telegram said.
• The Papal Legate accepted on the Pope's behalf an embroidered stole from the Anglican Church
Union. It bears the Pope's arms and the Cross of Canterbury and it is hoped the Pope will wear it during his visit to Canterbury Cathedral. The gift was made with the knowledge and goodwill of Dr Robert Runcie. Archbishop of Canterbury.
The Rev David Nicholls. from the Anglican group at the Congress pointed out the need for the Eucharist to open hearts to social injustice. But he added: "Bread stands for sharing and responsibility. Wine represents a kind of divine irresponsibility. Mary Magdalen took costly ointment and poured it on the head of Jesus. His disciples said responsibly. they were the responsible ones — this could have been sold and the money given to the nor. Yet Jesus replied 'She has done a good thing'. Let us not, then, forget the wine of the Eucharist. so that our love may generously overflow the strict demands of justice and law."