Vatican City, May 3, 2021 / 17:00 pm America/Denver (CNA).
Pope Francis will preside at a Mass for Rome’s Burmese community on May 16, as the death toll continues to rise following February’s military coup in Burma.
The Holy See press office announced May 3 that the pope will celebrate Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica for Burmese Catholics living in the Italian capital. The Mass will take place at the Altar of the Cathedra at 10 a.m. local time on the Solemnity of the Ascension.
The announcement came a day after Pope Francis once again expressed concern about the Southeast Asian country, officially known as Myanmar, where security forces have fired on people protesting against the Feb. 1 coup.
The advocacy group Assistance Association for Political Prisoners estimates that 766 people have died in the crackdown.
Speaking after the Regina Coeli on May 2, the pope said: “We have entered the month of May, in which popular piety expresses devotion to the Virgin Mary in many ways. This year it will be marked by a prayer marathon involving important Marian shrines, to implore the end of the pandemic. Yesterday evening was the first stop, in St. Peter’s Basilica.”