25th International Week of Prayer and Fasting begins Oct. 1
Today our world faces unprecedented crises: nuclear threats from North Korea, escalating global terrorism, widespread civil unrest, and the accelerating breakdown of marriage and family life. Plus, thousands have been impacted by natural disasters like Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. As we commemorate the 100th Anniversary of our Lady’s apparitions at Fatima, we remember the words of Sister Lucia of Fatima: “Final confrontation between the Lord and Satan will be over family and marriage.”
- Conversion of peoples and nations
- To defend the sanctity of marriage and family life
- To build a culture of life
- For peace and to implore God’s mercy
For the ninth and final day — Monday, Oct. 9 — people are asked to participate in an all-day Eucharistic Prayer Vigil for our nation and the world at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C., from 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. ET. Register for free online at www.iwopf.org, where you can also register your prayer pledges.
People around the globe are also urged to participate as individuals, families and parishes by attending daily Masses and holy hours, going to Confession, praying the Rosary and the Divine Mercy Chaplet, and fasting.
“Prayer and fasting is critical at this time in history,” says Celebrant and Homilist, Bishop Joseph Perry. Perry is Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago, Illinois, and Chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Committee on African American Catholics (2004 – present).
Basilica Day will include: dynamic speakers, The Global Living Rosary prayed by the Asian, African and Hispanic communities, as well as members of the Children’s Rosary, Procession of the Nations before the Noon Mass, and recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet and confession throughout the day.
Speakers at the Basilica include:
- Immaculée Ilibagiza, a Rwandan genocide survivor who is regarded as one of the world’s leading experts on faith, hope, and forgiveness.
- Teresa Tomeo, bestselling author, syndicated Catholic talk show host and speaker with more than thirty years of experience in print and broadcast media.
- Eric Scheidler, executive director of the Pro-Life Action League. Under Eric’s direction, the Pro-Life Action League has expanded its national leadership role to include coordination of large nationwide events like the 2012 Stand Up for Religious Freedom rallies and the National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children, launched in 2013.
In 2014, the International Week of Prayer and Fasting movement received an apostolic blessing from Pope Francis. The movement also received two apostolic blessings from Pope Saint John Paul II and heartfelt support from Saint Teresa of Calcutta, who proclaimed: “You must do this week — God wants this. Prayer is the answer to the world’s problems.”
In the words of the Coalition chairperson, Maureen Flynn: “Peace will not come to the world from the meetings and agreements of world leaders. Peace can only come to us from the return of humanity to God through means of conversion, to which we are being called by means of prayer, fasting and penance.”
During this 100th Anniversary of the apparitions at Fatima, we are reminded of what Our Blessed Mother told us at Fatima: “God wishes to establish in the world the devotion to My Immaculate Heart. If people do what I tell you, many souls will be saved and there will be peace … Say the Rosary every day to obtain peace for the world.”
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