Supporting missionaries through Mission Sunday

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THE people in Armagh Archdiocese have been urged to support missionaries working in some of the world’s poorest countries by donating during the forthcoming Mission Sunday collection on October 21.

The collection takes place in churches throughout Mid-Ulster.

The Mission Sunday collection is about supporting young churches and missionaries in meeting the spiritual and material needs of men, women and children in poorer countries overseas.

Over €2 million was raised during the national Mission Sunday collection last year. This money was used to fund a range of projects in Mission Dioceses in 16 countries in Africa and Asia, including India, Pakistan, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Sudan. The theme for Mission Sunday 2012 is ‘Growing in Communion’. People are encouraged to express missionary spirit at home by welcoming Ireland’s increasingly diverse ethnic communities.

This year, the Mission Sunday poster features Aisling Foley of Viatores Christi (VC) which recruits, trains and sends lay missionary volunteers to work overseas in areas of need. VC also aims to respond to needs overseas by giving people an opportunity to share their lives (skills, profession/trade) and witness to their faith in another culture.

The appeal was made by the Diocesan Director of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, Fr Vincent Darragh who has praised the generosity of the people of the Diocese who contributed €101,699 to the Mission Sunday collection last year.

Since the year 2000, the Diocese has contributed €1,622,136 to the missions and missionaries around the world. The Mission Sunday collection itself has taken place in Ireland for more than 80 years.

Fr Vincent Darragh said there is a special focus on Mission Sunday which is the one day set aside each year for Catholics worldwide to recommit themselves to the Church’s missionary activity through prayer and sacrifice.

“Supporting the Mission Sunday collection is a fine Irish tradition and I would appeal to the people in the Diocese to support this year’s collection on October 21. Your contributions are much needed and will be used by missionaries and the 1,100 Mission Dioceses to meet the spiritual and human needs of communities in some of the world’s poorest countries. I would also urge them to express their missionary spirit at home by being generous, compassionate and kind to strangers in our midst,” he added.