Pope Benedict has announced that Dublin will host the next Eucharistic Congress in 2012.

The Pontiff made the announcement during a televised address beamed from Rome to thousands of pilgrims attending the final mass of this year's congress in Quebec City in Canada.

The Dublin event will be the 50th congress. The event is staged every four years and was last held here in 1932.

Cardinal Seán Brady, Archbishop of Armagh and Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, Archbishop of Dublin, welcomed the news, saying they were ‘honoured and humbled’ that Dublin had been chosen for the event.

'We are deeply conscious that 2012 also marks the 50th anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council.' they said in a statement.

'The purpose of the Congress is to deepen our knowledge of the Eucharist which in itself is central to our Catholic faith.' the statement continued.

'Over the next four years, parishes are invited to suggest how best to celebrate the 2012 Congress the statement added.
The first International Eucharistic Congress was held in France in 1881 where gathered 300 people at the head of Eucharistic movements in European countries.

The event now attracts some 15,000 pilgrims for a week of celebrations, adoration, catechesis, cultural events, fraternal gatherings, and commitments to aid the poor.