The Apostolic Nuncio-Designate to the Philippines Archbishop Gabriele Giordano Caccia will preside at the Mass to mark Red Wednesday in the Archdiocese of Manila at the Manila Cathedral on Nov. 22, 2017 at 5:30 p.m. The homilist for the Mass will be Bishop Edwin de la Peña of the Prelature of Marawi. A program of lights and prayers will be held outside the Cathedral after the mass.
The Red Wednesday Campaign is an initiative of the Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), to bring attention to the martyrdom of Christians as they battle religious persecutions in many parts of the world. Red Wednesday was successfully launched by CAN United Kingdom last year. The Philippines will join Christians in the United Kingdom this year together with in Malta, Italy, and Brazil on the same date.
A total of 45 cathedrals, 24 shrines, and five basilicas nationwide have committed to participate in this year’s Red Wednesday. Many of the participants will illuminate the facade of their churches in red as a symbol of the persecution that Christians are undergoing in many areas around the world.
Among the notable churches that will participate in Red Wednesday aside from the Manila Cathedral are t the Minor Basilica of the Black Nazarene in Quiapo, the National Shrine of Our Mother of Perpetual Help in Baclaran, the Our Lady of Peace and Good Voyage in Antipolo, The Minor Basilica of Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary of Manaoag in Pangasinan and the Shrine of Mary, Queen of Peace or more commonly known as the EDSA Shrine.
Catholic universities, such as the Ateneo de Manila University, St. Paul University (Manila and Quezon City) and the University of Sto. Tomas will also join the symbolic event. These schools are also conducting exhibits and conferences on the situation of persecuted Christians in other parts of the world.
Red Wednesday is an initiative of Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), a Catholic charity organization under the Pope that was established to support Christian communities undergoing persecution, oppression, and poverty.
ACN sent out packages to all the participants containing the flow of the ceremony, prayers and other informational materials relevant to the campaign. ACN is inviting the public to participate in the symbolic ceremony by wearing red and praying for persecuted Christians this Wednesday.
ACN laments that the scale of religious persecution is not widely appreciated. Through Red Wednesday, ACN seeks to educate Filipinos that not only are Christians more persecuted than any other faith group, but ever-increasing numbers are experiencing the very worst forms of persecution.
Through Red Wednesday, ACN believes that as more Filipinos become aware of the situation of their persecuted brothers and sisters in faith, many will be moved by compassion so that they could support suffering Christian communities through prayer, information campaigns, and for those who are able, financial help. Material support is all the more vital given the evident failure of governments and the UN to help those persecuted explicitly because of their Christian faith.
By witnessing to the suffering of Christians, ACN seeks to shine a light on persecution and signals to people of conscience that the faithful’s plight should never be forgotten. For more information visit: www.acn-philippines.org; facebook: ACN-Aid to the Church in Need
Peachy E. Yamsuan/09053329214
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