All Catholics urged to join Pope, Bishop Olson, other bishops in consecration of Russia, Ukraine
Editor’s Note: This article was updated to reflect the time change for the local Act of Consecration and the Holy Father’s request that laity join in the Act of Consecration. The text of the Act of Consecration is available for download here.
FORT WORTH — Pope Francis asked all Catholic bishops, priests, and laity around the world to join him on March 25 in an Act of Consecration of Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
In the Diocese of Fort Worth, Bishop Michael F. Olson will pray the Act of Consecration at St. Patrick Cathedral after celebrating Mass at 12:05 p.m. on Friday, March 25, to coincide with Pope Francis’ Act of Consecration at 6:30 p.m. Rome time.
The Mass and consecration will be livestreamed on the diocesan website, fwdioc.org, and interpretation for the deaf will be provided. All priests in the diocese are invited to attend, as well as the faithful of the diocese.
Recently, the Vatican announced the pope would lead the prayer of consecration in St. Peter’s Basilica during a Lenten penance service on March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation. In union with bishops around the world, Pope Francis will pray the Marian consecration around 6:30 p.m. Central European Time. On that same day, Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, the papal almoner, will lead a similar act of consecration at the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Portugal.
On Wednesday, Pope Francis issued a letter expanding his invitation to laity across the world. He asked all Catholics to assemble in their churches to pray the consecration prayer with him on March 25, “so that God’s Holy People may raise a heartfelt and choral plea to Mary our Mother.”
“This Act of Consecration is meant to be a gesture of the universal Church, which in this dramatic moment lifts up to God, through His Mother and ours, the cry of pain of all those who suffer and implore an end to the violence, and to entrust the future of our human family to the Queen of Peace,” the pope wrote.
He also included the text of the consecration prayer, which can be downloaded in a printer-friendly format.
Mary appeared to three shepherd children at Fatima in 1917 with a message encouraging prayer and repentance, and she also asked for the consecration of Russia.
“Pope Francis has invited the bishops of the whole world, along with their priests, to join him in the prayer for peace and in the consecration and entrustment of Russia and of Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary,” Matteo Bruni, director of the Vatican press office, said March 18. The pontiff asked the bishops to join in the act of consecration at an hour locally that corresponds with the Rome consecration.
Even before the announcement from the Vatican, bishops from around the world had announced special services at which they would join Pope Francis. Bishops in cities across North America joined bishops from New Zealand, Philippines, Russia, Ukraine, and other countries planning special services.
The consecration, which means a spiritual entrustment, is a prayerful response to the tragic events unfolding in Ukraine.
Bishop Olson encouraged the faithful of the diocese, if unable to join him at St. Patrick Cathedral, to watch the diocesan livestream and pray the Act of Consecration of Russia and Ukraine to the Immaculate Heart of Mary from their parish or a place of prayer on March 25.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article includes reporting from Catholic News Service.