Pope Francis encourages Marian shrines to pray for the next Ordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, to be held in October 2023.
During the Regina Caeli prayer for Sunday, May 28, 2023, Pope Francis asks the Virgin Mary to accompany the Church in preparation for the next Ordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, to be held in Rome in October 2023. Marian shrines around the world, from the Americas to Portugal and the Philippines, will pray for the event next Wednesday, May 31.
At the end of May dedicated to the Virgin Mary, Pope Francis said, “We ask the Virgin Mary to accompany her maternal protection at this important stage of the Synod.”
According to the Secretary General of the Synod, more than 40 bishops’ conferences have joined the initiative. Some of the most important Marian shrines in the world will participate, such as Our Lady of Fatima (Portugal), Our Lady of Czestochowa (Poland), Our Lady of Knock (Ireland) and more.
In the Philippines, 26 Marian shrines and smaller basilicas will hold prayers to accompany Mary at the Synod. In other countries, such as Nicaragua, Malaysia, India or Bosnia-Herzegovina, all dioceses participate at this time.
The General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops in October is the third and final stage of the synodal process, which the Church has been carrying out since 2021. People around the world were able to share and understand where the Holy Spirit is leading the church today and into the future.
On 15 March, the Secretary General of the Synod issued a statement inviting all Episcopal Conferences, Marian shrines and churches to pray for the Synodal meeting on 31 May. Prayers should include all ecclesiastical vocations: laity, priesthood, consecrated life, etc.
The initiative is similar to the prayer chain that involves Marian shrines around the world to pray for the end of the pandemic.
Prayer for the Synod:
We stand before you, Holy Spirit, gathered in your name. You who are our true advisor: come to us, accompany us, enter our hearts. Show us the way, show us how to reach the goal. Save us from losing our way as weak and sinful people. Do not allow ignorance to lead us on false paths. Grant us the gift of discernment, so that we may not let our actions be guided by prejudice and false ideas. Lead us to unity in You, so that we may not stray from the path of truth and justice, but on our earthly pilgrimage may strive to attain eternal life. We ask this of You, who at all times and in all places, works with the Father and the Son forever and ever. so be it.