.- The Diocese of Avila in Spain has begun collecting signatures for a petition declaring 2015, the 500th anniversary of St. Teresa of Jesus' birth, as a “Year of Prayer.”
St. Teresa was a “master of prayer” who “left the testimony of her personal experience of prayer in her writings,” said campaign organizers.
Local Church leaders expressed hope that Pope Benedict will declare 2015 as a “Year of Prayer” and make St. Teresa the patroness for the celebration.
The campaign is being organized by the Carmelite Fathers, with the support of Bishop Jesus Garcia Burillo of Avila, who has written to all the pastors of the diocese inviting them to participate.
Signatures are being collected at parishes, religious communities and at the diocesan chancery. They will be sent along with a special letter to Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone.
“In time, St. Teresa became a master of prayer, not only for her spiritual sons and daughters, but for the entire Church,” organizers said.