The bishops of Columbia announced that relics of Blessed John Paul II will arrive in the capital city of Bogota for a two-day visit in January.
The relics are intended to be “an offering of spiritual reparation for the victims of violence and kidnapping,” said Bishop Juan Vicente Cordoba of Fontibon, secretary for the bishops' conference, on Dec. 5.
Pope Benedict XVI decided to send the relics to Colombia as gesture of his closeness and solidarity, the bishop added.
Blessed John Paul II's relics will arrive on Jan. 20 at the Cathedral of Bogota for veneration and later that evening, will be taken to the local Cristovision Catholic television network. On Jan. 21, the relics will arrive at the parish of Mary Queen of Heaven.
Bishop Cordoba Villota noted that the relics are “a symbol of the blood of all Colombians that cry out for the liberation of the kidnapped, the return of their lands and peace.”
Family members of kidnap victims and victims of the violence in Colombia were present at the Dec. 5 announcement.