Day of prayer and fasting for peace in Syria, the Middle East and throughout the world

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Bannervertical_Syria_2_ENDuring the Angelus at the Vatican this past Sunday, Pope Francis called for a day of fasting and prayer for peace in Syria, in the entire Mideast region, and throughout the whole world. The day he has scheduled is this coming Saturday, September 7, 2013. The Bishops of Canada are united with the Holy Father in inviting all Catholics to fast and pray for the Syrian people and for peace in the Middle East and throughout the world. Many dioceses will be preparing special prayer services and using whatever means they have to convey this invitation of the Holy Father for September 7.

At the same time, a number of dioceses will also be organizing special activities on September 14. This follows an invitation this past spring from the Most Reverend Richard Smith, President of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), for a day of prayer and fasting for Syria and for peace in the Middle East on September 14. This date also marks the conclusion of a joint campaign by the CCCB and the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (CCODP) to raise emergency aid for Syrian refugees. All donations to the special campaign are to be sent to Development and Peace by then. September 14 in the Roman Catholic liturgical calendar is the Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross.

Canadian Catholics are invited to check with their local diocese or parish on plans for both days, September 7 and 14. The CCCB website will live-stream any September 7 celebrations which are made available from the Vatican via Salt and Light Television. In addition, the CCCB website will continue to post information on preparations for September 14.

In a statement issued September 3, 2013, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced that “with an estimated 5,000 desperate Syrians fleeing their homes every day, the spiraling violence in the country has now created more than 2 million refugees.”

Link to the Pope’s statement
Link to the statement by UNHCR