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Papal prayer: That the pandemic will make us all work harder to build culture of life

FILIPPO MONTEFORTE
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In message for UK Day for Life, Francis speaks of moral imperative to do more for most vulnerable.

Pope Francis is sending greetings to the UK Day for Life, through a message sent on his behalf by his Secretary of State.

The message communicates the Holy Father’s hope “that amid the present crisis all will be led to a greater appreciation of the moral imperative to build a ‘culture of life’ marked by ever greater concern for nurturing, protecting and promoting the integral welfare of all God’s children, beginning with the most vulnerable.”

The pope urges the faithful to pray for all those who “often heroically” are dedicated to those suffering from the pandemic, including families, volunteers and health care professionals.

But he also asks prayer “for all those who, amid the continuing ‘pandemic’ of poverty and war, work to uphold the God-given value and dignity of every human person.”

Day for Life is the day in the Church’s year dedicated to raising awareness about the meaning and value of human life at every stage and in every condition. The Church teaches that life is to be nurtured from conception to natural death. This year’s Day for Life is celebrated May 31 in Scotland, June 21 in England and Wales and October 1 in Ireland.

This year, the theme is Choose Life, which will focus on the dignity and worth of the unborn child and expectant mothers. Pope Francis said this theme is “particularly fitting in this 25th anniversary year of Saint John Paul II’s Encyclical Evangelium Vitae, which summoned the entire Church to be ‘a people of life and for life’ (n: 78).”

Here is the text of the message.

“His Holiness Pope Francis sends prayerful good wishes for the celebration of the 2020 Day for Life in England and Wales, Scotland and Ireland.

“The theme ‘Choose Life’ is particularly fitting in this twenty-fifth anniversary year of Saint John Paul II’s Encyclical Evangelium Vitae, which summoned the entire Church to be ‘a people of life and for life’ (n: 78).

“In these days when our world faces the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic, the Holy Father asks the faithful to pray for all those families, volunteers and healthcare professionals committed, often heroically, to the care and healing of the suffering, and for all those who, amid the continuing ‘pandemic’ of poverty and war, work to uphold the God-given value and dignity of every human person.

“It is his hope that amid the present crisis all will be led to a greater appreciation of the moral imperative to build a ‘culture of life’ marked by ever greater concern for nurturing, protecting and promoting the integral welfare of all God’s children, beginning with the most vulnerable.

“With these sentiments, the Holy Father gives the assurance of his closeness in prayer and cordially imparts his Apostolic Blessing as a pledge of joy and peace in the Lord.”

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