The pontifical charity Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) joins the Catholic bishops of the Holy Land in their call for a day of prayer and fasting for peace, to take place next Tuesday, 17 October.
The appeal was voiced by cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, in the name of the entire Catholic episcopate of the Holy Land. “Once again, we find ourselves in the midst of a political and military crisis. We have suddenly been catapulted into a sea of unprecedented violence”, writes the Patriarch, referring to the full-blown military conflict that erupted between armed Palestinian organizations and the Israeli armed forces, and which has already caused the death of hundreds of civilians.
“The hatred, which we have unfortunately already been experiencing for too long, will increase even more, and the ensuing spiral of violence will create more destruction. Everything seems to speak of death”, the Patriarch says, adding that “in this time of sorrow and dismay, we do not want to remain helpless. We cannot let death and its sting be the only word we hear”.
To beseech God for peace, the Patriarch asks that all the Catholics in the Holy Land join in a day of fasting, abstinence and prayer: “Let us organize prayer times with Eucharistic adoration and recitation of the Rosary to our Blessed Virgin Mary. Although most probably in many parts of our dioceses, circumstances will not permit large gatherings, it is possible to organize simple and sober common moments of prayer in parishes, religious communities, and families”. In communion with this appeal, ACN asks its benefactors and friends to join in this day of prayer as well.
The executive president of ACN, Regina Lynch, had already issued a call for prayers for peace in the Holy Land on Monday. Now, in response to the appeal of the Catholic bishops of the Holy Land, the organization invites its benefactors and friends to participate in the various initiatives planned for this Day of Prayer.
On the following day, 18 October, hundreds of thousands of children all over the world are already signed up to participate in the initiative “One Million Children praying the Rosary”, and peace in the Holy Land will also be one of the intentions of this year’s campaign.