Pope Benedict XVI has invited Catholics worldwide to join him in praying for all those in the process of being born on Saturday, Nov. 27. The day the Holy Father has selected falls on the eve of First Sunday of Advent, when Christians begin their spiritual preparation for the birth of the Christ Child celebrated on Christmas Day. Locally, Bishop Richard Pates invites the public to join him in a Mass and evening prayer service at St. Ambrose Cathedral on Nov. 27 beginning with the regularly scheduled 4 p.m. Mass. Immediately following, there will be a special evening prayer service at the cathedral with benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.
Bishop Pates encourages the 82 parishes in the Diocese of Des Moines to also observe the Holy Father’s vigil on Nov. 27, which honors the children who are coming into existence. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has prepared resources in both English and Spanish for parishes. The resources can be found at www.usccb.org/prolife/papalvigil.
"As we begin to celebrate the wait for the birth of Jesus through the annual Advent season, let us remember all children who are developing, growing and preparing for birth in the womb of their mothers," said Bishop Richard Pates. "As Catholics worldwide join their prayer in unison, may it become the strength and protection for some of the most vulnerable among us."