The bishops of Philippines will be consecrating the country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary in their respective cathedrals on May 13th, the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima. In Manila, Bishop Broderick Pabillo will lead the consecration prayer. In the archdiocese of Manila, the faithful have been encouraged to do penances and offer rosaries in preparation for the consecration. The archdiocese is planning to release online resources next month so that the faithful may have a deep understanding of the meaning and implication of such a consecration.
Persecuted Christians are the bleeding members of the body of Christ, Pope Francis says
In his Wednesday General Audience message, Pope Francis reflected on the ninth beatitude: “Blessed are the persecuted for justice, because of them is the kingdom of heaven.” Pope Francis said it is painful to remember that, at this moment, there are many Christians who suffer persecutions in various areas of the world. Pope Francis said that the persecuted Christians are the bleeding members of the body of Christ which is the Church. The Pope stated that in persecutions there is always the presence of Jesus who accompanies us. He concluded the message urging the faithful not to get discouraged when a life consistent with the Gospel attracts people’s persecutions.
Pope Francis establishes John Paul I Foundation
Pope Francis has established John Paul I Foundation, to promote and study the thoughts and teachings of Pope John Paul I. The Holy Father appointed Cardinal Pietro Parolin, secretary of state, as president of the foundation. The members of the foundation include Dr. Stefania Falasca as Vice-President, Cardinal Beniamino Stella, Reverend Msgr. Andrea Celli, Reverend Don Davide Fiocco, Dr. Lina Petri, and Dr. Alfonso Cauteruccio. The pontificate of Pope John Paul I – Albino Luciani, was from 26 August to 28 September 1978. To protect and preserve the cultural and religious patrimony of Pope John Paul I, the foundation will be initiating conferences, meetings, seminars, and study sessions. For researches and studies in the same field, the foundation will be functioning as the point of reference in Italy and abroad.
Daughters of St. Paul launches ‘Spiritual Adoption’ program
The Daughters of St. Paul in the United States has launched a ‘Spiritual Adoption’ program. With the special intention of praying for COVID-19 patients and front liners, the initiative virtually connects people who want to get spiritually adopted and who are willing to adopt spiritually and pray. In the program, one person will be spiritually supported by five others through prayer. The sisters of the Daughters of Saint Paul virtually pair and connect participants. After signing up, participants are requested to pray daily and sign the ‘Spiritual Adoption Prayer Card’ given to them. They will also be linked to the private Facebook group to meet other spiritual adopters and adoptees for support and encouragement online.
Mexican Episcopal Conference launches ‘Families without Hunger’ initiative
In response to growing hunger and poverty due to COVID-19, the Episcopal Conference of Mexico (CEM) has launched ‘Families without Hunger’ which is part of Food and Medicine Solidarity Chain. Under Caritas Mexico, the ‘Families without Hunger’ initiative will help families in need through local parishes. Eradicating hunger being the priority, the initiative will also cover the basic needs of families who have lost their livelihoods in the crisis. The Episcopal Conference also urged the federal government, state, and municipal governments to prioritize health care and food over other projects. Families in need of help are requested to contact nearby parishes
Catholic radios bring hope amid COVID-19
Amidst the prevailing uncertainties of the global pandemic, the Catholic radios of Africa are bringing the Gospel of hope to the faithful. Radio Ditunga, founded by the Diocese of Mbujimayi with the help of the Pontifical Foundation, is the voice of Church in the Democratic Republic of the Congo for the past ten years. The radio station with headquarters in Ngandajika, has been broadcasting Holy Eucharistic celebrations, prayers and spiritual exercises as churches remain closed due to health concerns. The radio station had aired live spiritual exercises and liturgical celebrations of the Easter Triduum. Radio Sol Mansi in Guinea-Bissau is another Catholic radio in Portuguese, committed to bringing faith in difficult times. They broadcast divine services, hours of prayers, and catechesis. Aid to the Church in Need has been supporting the radio stations across Africa.