Loading
Collection for Catholics in post-Communist countries to take place Ash Wednesday

.- The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has announced that the 2008 Collection for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe will take place in most parishes on February 6, Ash Wednesday.

The collection’s theme, “Love is the only light,” is taken from Pope Benedict XVI’s first encyclical “Deus Caritas Est,” “God is Love,” in which he writes, “Love is the light—and in the end, the only light—that can always illuminate a world grown dim and give us the courage needed to keep living and working.”

The USCCB established the collection shortly after the collapse of Communism to help the Church regain her footing in countries that had driven Catholics underground.  Priests, bishops, and lay leaders were imprisoned.  Churches, schools, and seminaries were left to decay or were converted to other uses.

“As a result of this severe repression, the bishops of the region today face the formidable tasks of restoring church structures and, more importantly, of rebuilding the spiritual centers of their communities. Now more than ever, the ecclesial needs of Catholics in Central and Eastern Europe must be tenderly cared for,” said Cardinal Justin Rigali, Chairman of the Subcommittee on Aid to the Church in Central and Eastern Europe.

Since 1991, the collection has provided more than $100 million to Catholics in post-Communist Russia as well as Central and Eastern Europe.  More than 3,500 projects in more than 25 countries have been supported by the collection.  The projects include a ministry to Magdan, Russia, which once held a Stalinist labor camp and educational endeavors in war-torn Kosovo.

The good that these collections accomplish is heartening. The website for the aid effort relates several stories, one of which comes from the town of Ushachi, Belarus.

Bishop Wladyslaw Blin of Vitebsk consecrated a new Catholic church built with assistance from the American collection.  The old church had been shut down during the Soviet era, and collapsed from disrepair.

One woman wept outside as the concelebrants gathered in front of the church. 

“What’s wrong?” asked one of the priests.

“I am thinking about my parents,” the woman said through her tears, “and the day I walked by here as a little girl. There was nothing but a pile of ruins. I asked them what it was. They said, ‘a church.’ For years and years, I thought ‘church’ meant a mass of rubble.”

“Now I’ve lived to this day to see this wonderful building and to join in the celebration. It is truly God’s miracle!” she exclaimed through tears of joy.”

The Collection for the Church in Central and Eastern Europe will continue to fund such activities, one official with the campaign said.

“The story of the Church in Central and Eastern Europe is a story of vitality and growth, a story of steadfastness and hope. Where darkness once seemed to reign, the light of love has broken through,” said Father James M. McCann S.J., executive director of the Collection for the Church in Eastern Europe.

More information about the collection and the blessings it has brought can be found at http://www.usccb.org/aee/


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
Dedicating art to San Juan de la Cruz
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Saint John Paul II on cartoon
Syrian Christian refugees
Jul
27

Liturgical Calendar

July 27, 2014

SEVENTEENTH SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:44-52

Gospel
Date
07/27/14
07/26/14
07/25/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: 1 Kings 3: 5, 7-12
Second Reading:: Rom 8: 28-30
Gospel:: Mt 13: 44-52

Saint of the Day

St. Panteleon »

Saint
Date
07/27/14
07/25/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:44-52

Homily
Date
07/27/14
07/26/14
07/25/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: