.- On October 4 the World Congress of Prayer for Life opened in Fatima, under the theme "Mary, We Entrust To You The Cause of Life," bringing together hundreds of participants from more than 30 countries.
According to the Portuguese news agency Ecclesia, the organizers of event said they were pleased with the turnout, which "surpassed all expectations," and that they have received messages of solidarity from people around the world. The congress will continue through October 8.
They also underscored that the gathering, "although not political in nature, will contribute to the discussion on a proposal to carry out a referendum on abortion, scheduled to take place in the coming days" in Portugal.
Participants at the Congress include the Secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family, Msgr. Karl Josef Romer, the Most Reverend Serafim Ferreira e Silva, Bishop Emeritus of Leiria-Fatima, the president of the Portuguese Federation for Life, Isilda Pegado, the vice-postulator of the cause of canonization of the three shepherd children of Fatima, Father Luis Condor, and others.