When the icon of the Black Madonna arrives at Westminster Cathedral next Monday, 5th November, at 5 p.m. there will be Mass in the Cathedral in memoriam for all unborn babies and for healing of those affected by abortion, celebrated by Bishop Alan Hopes, auxiliary bishop of Westminster.
Prior to the Mass, SPUC has organized a pro-life event in The Hinsley Room, Morpeth Terrace, SW1, from 3 p.m. to 5 pm which will feature addresses from SPUC, Good Counsel Network and Helpers of God's Precious Infants. The event will consist of refreshments and stalls, presentations and prayer. The Hinsley Room is situated close to Westminster Cathedral, in Morpeth Terrace between two school playgrounds.
Ewa Kowaleska, European co-ordinator of the pilgrimage, and director of Human Life International, Poland, has said:
"The Icon travelled over 30 thousand kilometers in 137 days and has been met by nearly 2,000,000 people. Large crowds of people – Orthodox, as well as Catholics – have been greeting Our Lady on Her scheduled route, giving their unwavering witness of faith and their active involvement in the defense of life.
"Since June 15, when this historic and unprecedented pilgrimage began in Vladivostok, the following countries have already welcomed Our Lady's Icon on Her journey:Whether or not you can get along to one of the many events in Britain, those wishing to be associated with the pilgrimage can join in the following daily prayer - an Act of Entrustment of the Protection of the Civilisation of Life and Love Into the Hands of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary, which represents the heart and purpose of this historic spritual project:
Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia, Italy, Austria, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland and Germany. This autumn, the Icon of Our Lady of Czestochowa will be visiting the following countries: Belgium, Great Britain, Ireland, France, and Spain. Our Lady will arrive in Fatima, Portugal just in time for Christmas."
O Blessed Virgin Mary, Chaste Mother of God, Immaculate Virgin.SPUC has donated towards the British leg of the pilgrimage which has received Catholic episcopal support from Archbishop Vincent Nichols, the archbishop of Westminster, Archbishop Longley, the archbishop of Birmingham, Bishop Mark Davies, the bishop of Shrewsbury, Cardinal O'Brien the archbishop of St. Andrews and Edinburgh and the bishops of Scotland.
Into your hands we entrust the great cause of protecting the civilization of life and love.
We live in a difficult time of a massive global attack by the civilization of death.
Very many innocent people are perishing - unborn children, the aged and the sick.
The number of victims already exceeds two billion human beings.
Each day an additional 50 thousand children die in their mother’s womb.
Many people do not want to have any children at all.
Means of destroying fertility and life are becoming more and more common.
Infertility of married couples is increasing.
The human child is becoming a product of modern technology, a donor of cells and organs.
Children “are produced” with designated attributes, subject to selection.
Hundreds of thousands of frozen embryos are preserved between life and death in liquid nitrogen.
International man made law denies legal protection to the life of the unborn child.
More and more countries are legalizing euthanasia.
The attack on marriage and the family is increasing.
O Holy Mother, we promise you that we will defend human life,especially the small and defenseless, with all our strength.
We stand before you, Mother of Our Redeemer,
fully aware that alone we are unable to win that global struggle.
Stand at the forefront of the defense of life movements and lead us.
Protect life! Save the family! Strengthen us!
Obtain from your son the victory of the civilization of life and love!
Archbishop Elisey of the Russian Orthodox diocese of Sourozh has assured the support of the Diocese of Sourozh. The Diocese of Sourozh has for its territory the islands of Great Britain and Ireland.
Dr Tom Ward, vice-president of the National Association of Catholic Families, explained to me the signficance of the Black Madonna of Czestochowa. He said:
"The Black Madonna is not an icon, exclusively, of either the Catholics or the Orthodox. It antedates the great schism. It's our common patronage.
"The pilgrimage of the Black Madonna has for the first time in 1000 years caused Orthodox an Catholics to unite in defence of their families - which have never been under such threat from politicians in Britain and throughout the world promoting abortion, same-sex marriage and the destruction of parents as the primary educators of their children.
"In the Ocean to Ocean pilgrimage Orthodox and Catholic families are entrusting to the Mother of God the replacement of today's culture of death with a new civilisation of love and life based on the timeless values of marriage and the family. This is nothing less than a cultural revolution based on the teachings of Christ."*Pacific Ocean at Vladivostok to the Atlantic Ocean at Fatima.
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