Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
“As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” — Jn 20:21
World Mission Sunday, celebrated this year on the weekend of Oct. 20-21, is a special day of “prayer and sacrifice” for the world-wide missionary work of the Church.
At baptism each of us is given a special responsibility. We are called by our Lord to tell the world the “Good News” of his love and salvation. We are to be his missionaries. Each year on World Mission Sunday, as baptized Catholics we gather for Mass and offer prayers and sacrifices for the missionary task.
Until early in the 20th century the United States was mission territory and benefited from the funds raised by the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. Since then other parts of the missionary efforts of the Church have benefited from your generosity.
Today missionary areas of the world (young churches of Asia, Africa, the Pacific Islands and Latin America) face even far greater challenges than we do in the United States. As we remember our own mission history this World Mission Sunday we can offer our prayers and financial help for the young and growing churches of the missions today. Your generosity through the Propagation of the Faith will reach those who await the “Good News” of Jesus who long to experience his hope and love.
This year our missionary effort is complemented by the Year of Faith initiated by Pope Benedict XVI who calls for “renewed energy to the mission of the whole Church to lead men and women out of the desert they are often in and toward the place of life: friendship with Christ who give us fullness of life.”
Please be as generous as your means will allow this World Mission Sunday. Let us pray, in the words of our Holy Father Pope Benedict XVI, that our celebration encourages everyone toward a renewed awareness of the urgent need to proclaim the Gospel. Be assured of my prayer-filled thanks for your ongoing generosity.
Sincerely in Christ,
Most Rev. Martin Amos
Bishop of Davenport