Introducing an Ecumenical Initiative
Parish solidarity with persecuted Christians
Amidst the hope-filled expectation and joy of the seasons of Advent and Christmas, the liturgy reminds us that the Christ-child was born into a world of struggle and violence, into a vulnerable family coping with many uncertainties, and into a religious community under great pressure.
As we ponder this mystery, let us hold in our hearts and prayer all who are walking a path through the violence and uncertainties of our own time.
In a particular way we remember our suffering Christian brothers and sisters throughout the world, and all who face persecution for their religious or cultural identity.
One way to support the persecuted Church is to keep the plight of persecuted Christians before the eyes of our parish communities on a regular basis, with the call to prayer, to material giving, and considered reflection.
To assist parishes in this, the following website provides prayers, stories, liturgies, church statements and items for parish bulletins. It is an ecumenical initiative flowing from our Tri-Diocesan Covenant.
Follow the link here:
The website, soon to be linked to a Facebook page, is brand new and will develop as 2016 unfolds.
Parishes are invited to start using this tool regularly in a timely fashion that suits their parish or organisation’s schedule, conscious of the urgency of the issues at hand.
A strength of this initiative is its ecumenical solidarity, Catholics and Anglicans working together to support their persecuted Christian brothers and sisters of many different Churches. Pope Francis speaks often of ‘an ecumenism of blood’ that cries out for a response from the Churches and from the wider community. This initiative offers steps by which even the busiest pastor or least resourced parish can respond with prayer, aid and mindfulness.