"I would like that date to be kept by you as a day of prayer for the Church in China. I encourage you to celebrate it by renewing your communion of faith in Jesus our Lord and of faithfulness to the Pope, and by praying that the unity among you may become ever deeper and more visible. I remind you, moreover, of the commandment that Jesus gave us, to love our enemies and to pray for those who persecute us...
"On that same day, the Catholics of the whole world – in particular those who are of Chinese origin – will demonstrate their fraternal solidarity and solicitude for you, asking the Lord of history for the gift of perseverance in witness, in the certainty that your sufferings past and present for the Holy Name of Jesus and your intrepid loyalty to his Vicar on earth will be rewarded, even if at times everything can seem a failure."In anticipation of the fifth Day of Prayer for the Church in China, the Pope added last Sunday:
"We join in prayer all the Catholics in China, that they may proclaim with humility and joy Christ’s death and Resurrection, that they may be faithful to the Church and to the Successor of Peter and live their daily life consistently with the faith that they profess. May Mary, Faithful Virgin, sustain the journey of Chinese Catholics, render their prayer ever more intense and precious in the eyes of the Lord, and make the affection and participation of the universal Church grow on the path of the Church in China."Here let me share some pictures of cathedrals in China that I have visited:
|Clockwise from top-left:|
(1) Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Guangzhou (廣州)
(2) Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Hangzhou (杭州)
(3) Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Beijing (北京)
(4) Cathedral of St. Francis of Assisi, Xi'an (西安)
(5) Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Nanjing (南京)
(6) Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Shenyang (瀋陽)
(7) Cathedral of St. Ignatius Loyola, Shanghai (上海)
(8) Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Taiyun (太原)
Please pray for courage of the Chinese bishops loyal to the Pope, for the sanctity of the priests and religious in China, for the laypeople who suffer because of their faith, for an open attitude of the Chinese government to the Church, and for a miracle from God to allow evangelization to the 1.3 billion people in Mainland China longing for the truth.