April 27 designated Day of Prayer in Atonement

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann has determined that April 27 should be observed in all parishes of the Kansas City Archdiocese in Kansas as a day of prayer in atonement and for the healing of all who have been harmed by abuse. sexual.

by Joe Bollig
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KANSAS CITY, Kan. – “There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every matter under heaven”, according to the Book of Ecclesiastes (1:1).

And now there is a time for spiritual reparation of the offense and for healing.

Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann has determined that April 27 should be observed in all parishes of the Kansas City Archdiocese in Kansas as a day of prayer in atonement and for the healing of all who have been harmed by abuse. sexual. For specific hours in your parish, check your parish bulletin or website.

The idea is “rooted in the archbishop’s concern for those who have been abused and affected by sexual abuse within the church,” said Michael Podrebarac, archdiocesan consultant for liturgy and sacramental life.

“For too long, survivors of abuse by church officials have gone unnoticed and unheard,” said one abuse survivor, “which has only heightened our pain and shame. .

“Having a Mass focused on healing and repairing relationships gives me hope that things are really changing.”

The Archdiocese offered three regional healing services in 2016 for those affected by any type of abuse or harm, and in 2018 held the first Archdiocese-wide Day of Prayer for the Protection of Children .

“The Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph first adopted the day in their liturgical calendar several years ago,” said Fr. John Riley, Chancellor of the Archdiocese. “Bishop Naumann thought that we too should offer a day of prayer and atonement every year in our liturgical calendar.”

The archdiocese and the diocese have decided to hold their Days of Atonement prayer on the same day in April so that they can collaborate, but this year they are shifted by one day. They will use the same date next year and from there.

The two dioceses decided to choose April because it is National Child Abuse Prevention Month.

All Catholics are invited to attend Mass on April 27 and unite their prayers for this particular intention.

“Parishioners should want to participate because we are all the church, the body of Christ,” said Amy Stork, a victim care advocate with the archdiocesan office for protection and care. “The survivors sit among us. It is our way of helping to participate in this healing.

“This issue has affected every member of our community in one way or another, if only through the absence of some members of our community,” said Kathleen Chastain, consultant in the Office of Protection and care.

If they cannot attend, all Catholics must offer prayer on that day, but all Catholics are encouraged to attend. Those who have been injured, and especially their loved ones, are especially welcome.

“It is a day of observance for the whole church,” Podrebarac said. “Obviously the focus is on the victims of abuse themselves, but it is also aimed at those who are family members – the spouses and children of those who have been sexually abused.

“In a broader sense, it draws the attention of all worshipers to this scourge within our church and the world so that we may be vigilant in prayer for the eradication of all forms of abuse in the church and in the world”.

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