SHOW MERCY TO CHRISTIANS IN NEED THIS LENT
In this season of Lent, the Holy Father calls us to help spread God’s mercy to our brothers and sisters in need around the world.
He says: “I invite you all, together with ACN, to do everywhere in the world, a work of mercy”.
In his 2021 Lenten message, Pope Francis calls for a renewal of Faith, hope and love towards Christians in need, especially our persecuted brothers and sisters. Reflecting on the Holy Father’s message, the European Union and United Nations Advocacy Officer for Aid to the Church in Need, Marcela Szymanski says the strong faith of persecuted Christians reminds us that sacrifice goes together with deeply-rooted love. Persecuted Christians are for us a source of courage and blessings. Let us show our love for them, so that they do not feel abandoned in their struggle.
Your gift of Faith given with love this Lent will make a huge difference in the lives of these Christians in need around the world.
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Your kind gift will help fund key projects which help provide essential aid to Christians in need around the world.
THIS LENT, WOULD YOU OFFER A GIFT OF MERCY TO CHRIST IN HIS SUFFERING CHURCH?
Your kind gift, or a gift on behalf of a loved one, will make a huge difference
Support the formation of a Seminarian
Supporting the formation of Seminarians is a top priority for ACN (Malta), especially in poor countries where the need is greatest. Recently, 48 Seminarians of the Diocese of Dumka in India were supported by the kind generosity of ACN (Malta)’s benefactors. For many years, ACN has helped the Diocese of Grodno in Belarus with the formation of its Seminarians. 25 young men currently study there, and eight (8) of them are new entrants to the Seminary. According to their Rector Vitaly Vojtekhovskyj, they have begun the new year with optimism despite the COVID-19 pandemic and political unrest in the country. But their training is still a great challenge as “It is impossible to support their formation from Sunday collections alone”. So, once again, the Rector is asking for our support. Will you give to help the future priests of Belarus continue their studies and complete their formation?
Provide a Food Package for a Needy Family
Across Brazil, a number of Parishes and religious communities have been providing food and other essential items to those who need them – and Aid to the Church in Need has been supporting these Parishes and communities who are themselves facing further difficulties due to Covid-19. Sister Romana dos Santos of the Daughters of Mary – Servants of the Poor, told us: “At this very difficult time in our country’s history, many people are unemployed and do not have enough money to ensure they have basic food.” Sister Beatriz Krstacic says: “With your assistance, we can do something to help our brothers and sisters have a dignified life. We are eternally grateful for your generosity as this will help us to assist so many needy families.” With your generosity ACN can continue supporting the Sisters in their mission among these poor communities.
Help provide a car to aid the pastoral work of the Annunciation Sisters
The Servants of the Annunciation Sisters are serving in the parish of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, located in the Diocese of Pemba, Mozambique. Since June 2015, the Parish has no Parish Priest. The Parish is composed of 15 communities and has a population of over 83,000. The work of the Sisters in the Parish comprises the entire organisation of the parish life, visits to communities, family counselling, catechesis, liturgies, various celebrations, preparation for the Sacraments, etc. These Sisters are also in charge of the school and the community. In 2019, the Sisters suffered a serious accident in which their vehicle was destroyed and since then, the two Sisters who used the vehicle have had to undergo various medical procedures for health issues. The Bishop of Pemba Diocese, Mons Luis Fernando Lisboa, wrote to ACN asking for help in the name of the Sisters, so that they can have a new car to continue to serve God’s children. Fr Martin Barta, ACN International’s Ecclesiastical Assistant, wrote: “We thank God for these exceptional women, and we thank you for enabling us to support them around the world by your sacrifices of love.” With your generous donation, ACN can help the Sisters buy a new car so they can continue their courageous work in the Parish and the Diocese of Pemba.
Support a Widow to take care of her family
Most people affected by Boko Haram crisis in north eastern Nigeria are women and children. Many of them have witnessed the cruel killing of their husbands and fathers; many have been raped, sexually abused, and exploited. “Combined with the persistent increased rates of poverty and illiteracy in the region, the Boko Haram conflict, has led to the destruction of livelihoods, widespread displacement and suffering,” says Bishop Oliver Doeme. At present, the diocese has about 8,000 widows with over 17,000 orphans of various ages, most of whom are still young and dependent on their mothers. The local Church has provided humanitarian aid of food, clothing and medicines to some of the victims. However, in view of the high number of people affected, it is impossible for the Diocese to continue to offer them such help. ACN is supporting a project by the Diocese to train the widows as seamstresses, knitters, shoemakers, bakers and beverage producers so they can be empowered to take care of their families through their own income but, apart from time, this project requires funds to purchase tools, machinery (eg sewing machines, small baking machines) and raw materials. Please help give these widows the support they desperately need.
Support the livelihood of a poor Priest
For many Priests in the poorest parts of the world, who often have no other income, Mass stipends are a vital contribution for both their survival and their work among the Faithful. The Diocese of Tezpur in northeast India is very poor and the Priests in that district also have to help the poor Faithful through education, training, and practical acts of Charity. Bishop Michael Akasius Toppo writes: “We are endeavouring to bring the redeeming message of Christ to people of all tribes and tongues, but we need a helping hand. I am sending you this request for Mass stipends, confident of your generous support.” Will you give so ACN can help sustain the livelihood of Priests in this poor and remote part of India?
Help the Franciscan Sisters continue their work of mercy
The town of Atbassar in Kazakhstan is home to approximately 30,000 people; half of whom require material support. A small community of Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate Conception has been working there since 2006 and helping the Parish with the pastoral care of the Faithful and also serving the needs of non- Christians who need help. But every day, more and more people knock on their door, seeking help. The Sisters even distribute coal and firewood that they buy themselves. At Easter and Christmas, they try to bring a little joy to 50 local children by giving them little presents. Your gift of Faith this Lent will help the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception continue their work of mercy to the poor people of Atbassar.
Help provide emergency aid for a displaced family
The Diocese of Pemba in Mozambique is marked by a humanitarian disaster. There are over 250,000 displaced persons who have fled ISIS-affiliated extremists in Cabo Delgado, north of the country and have been received in the parishes of the diocese. These people have not only lost their homes, their possessions and livelihoods, but also relatives and friends, communities and identity have been broken. They all are eyewitnesses to acts of violence. ACN is supporting a project to provide food, blankets, clothing and trauma counselling for these families – many of whom had to leave everything behind when they fled from the extremists. Your kind gift could help towards the running costs of this essential project in Mozambique.