Saturday, May 24, 2008

Day of Prayer for Chinese Catholics

Today, May 24 is the Feast of Our Lady, Help of Christians. Under this title, the most Blessed Virgin is venerated at the shrine of Sheshan near Shanghai, China. A place of great devotion, thousands of Chinese pilgrims will make their way to this, one of the most important shrines in China dedicated to Our Lady. Because of this, Pope Benedict XVI designated May 24th as a day of prayer for the Church in China in a letter to Chinese Catholics:

"On that same day, the Catholics of the whole world – in particular those who are of Chinese origin – will demonstrate their fraternal solidarity and solicitude for you, asking the Lord of history for the gift of perseverance in witness, in the certainty that your sufferings past and present for the Holy Name of Jesus and your intrepid loyalty to his Vicar on earth will be rewarded, even if at times everything can seem a failure."
Let us join our brothers and sisters throughout the world on this day of prayer for Chinese Catholics. You will find a prayer to Our Lady of Sheshan composed by Pope Benedict here.

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