Catholic News Agency reports:
"A letter from Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments and Cardinal Ennio Antonelli of the Pontifical Council for the Family has been sent to the bishops of the world to invite a similar celebration and prayer initiative on a local level throughout the Catholic Church."The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has responded positively to Pope Benedict's request highlighting the Holy Father's request that:
“All Diocesan Bishops (and their equivalent) of every particular church preside in analogous celebrations involving the faithful in their respective parishes, religious communities, associations and movements.”In a statement, Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, Texas, chairman of the episcopal conference's pro-life committee, has highlighted the "unprecedented" nature of this request from the Pontiff and makes the following appeal to US Catholics:
"I heartily encourage all Catholics, whether at home or travelling over the Thanksgiving holidays, to take part in this special prayer ...I would urge all my visitors to contact their parish priests and their bishops to ask that the Pope's request be publicized and promoted to the greatest possible extent.
" ... Becoming a voice for the child in the womb, and for the embryonic human being at risk of becoming a mere object of research, and for the neglected sick and elderly is one of many ways we can teach our fellow citizens that 'The Measure of Love is to Love Without Measure.'"
Let's never forget: According to one calculation, 55 million people were killed during the second world war. From the perspective of 2010, these killings in the most deadly war in human history seem like the mere preluded of a tragic drama which was to be played out for the rest of the 20th century and into the 21st. Hundreds of millions of innocent human beings have been killed. There have been over 50 million recorded abortions in the US since 1973 and over 7 million recorded abortions in Britain since 1968 bringing us to well over 55 million abortions in the US and Britain alone - not to mention the deaths of human embryos through invitro fertilisations procedures and the countless deaths of human embryos through abortifacient birth control.
Pope Benedict's call for a vigil for all nascent human life could not be more timely or more important. Let all who believe in prayer, pray for a great outpouring of grace on our bishops which impels them to respond generously to his call.
The USCCB has, they say, developed Vigil prayer aids for dioceses and parishes which will soon be available. Given the scale of the worldwide crisis, no-one could possibly argue that the vigil cannot be supported because of other priorities or because of events being held in support of life at other times of the year. A world figure has called for a worldwide response to arguably the greatest crisis ever to befall humanity and it really must be supported.
I would like to give publicity to any events occurring in dioceses throughout Britain - so do keep me posted about what's happening in your diocese or parish.
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