I look through hundreds of photos a day as part of my job. But last December a set of photos came through that surprised me.
Amid all of the violence in Central African Republic (CAR), I did not expect to see images of pilgrimage and faith. In the town of Boda, Lobaye District, pilgrims gathered to celebrate the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary.
The photos are beautiful.
The ceremony is spiritual.
I’m sharing these photos taken by Sam Phelps to show the Church’s strength when all things around it seem to be unraveling.
Father Adelino blesses a congregation of pilgrims bowed down on the ground in prayer on a hilltop during a mass service on Dec.7, 2013. The congregation carries the statue of the Virgin Mary to this mount where it is left through the night before being retrieved at dawn the next morning.
Written by Melissa Stevens.
All photos by Sam Phelps for CRS.
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