AMERICA/GUATEMALA - Over 2,300 children take part in Mission Sunday celebrations: special mention of 90 Holy Childhood children victims of Hurricane Stan

Wednesday, 26 October 2005

Guatemala City (Fides Service) - October 25th Mission Sunday Mass was presided by Bishop Gerardo Flores Reyes, emeritus Bishop of La Verapaz a member of the Guatemalan Bishops’ Commission for Missions in Guatemala City’s John Paul II Auditorium, filled with over 2,300 children from all over the country. In his homily Bishop Flores made special mention of 90 children missionaries, members of the Holy Childhood Society, not present because they were “victims the fury of Hurricane Stan”. Reflecting on Mission Sunday Message 2005 written by Pope John Paul II and calling attention to the difficult situation in Guatemala, the Bishop encouraged the children to be “broken bread”: “this is the time to be Broken Bread to help boys and girls who lost everything. This is the time to be authentic missionaries to make Jesus present in the most remote villages of our country, with our witness and our willingness to serve others”.
At the end of Mass in communion with Pope Benedict XVI who on the Mission Sunday closed the Year of the Eucharist and the Synod of Bishops, hundreds of children took part in a procession with the Blessed Sacrament, with prayers, hymns and moments of silence. A group of seventy altar boys representing parishes went in front of the Blessed Sacrament and the Millennium choir led the singing of eucharistic hymns.
Mission Sunday celebrations in Guatemala City, organised by the National Pontifical Mission Societies Office started with animation and entertainment for the youngest participants. National director Fr Antonio Bernasconi said similar initiatives were held by diocesan PMS groups to foster ever deeper missionary awareness and ever more intense cooperation to carry the good news of salvation to all brothers and sisters. (RZ) (Agenzia Fides 26/10/2005, righe 26, parole 334)