Friday, February 15, 2019

Prayers and Candles in Atonement for Victims of Abuse in February with Prayer by Survivor

Candles of Atonement are being lit to mark the Day of Prayer for Survivors of Abuse. The candles are to bring to mind those who have been left “with lifelong suffering as a result of abuse, whose trust was so deeply betrayed and whose faith has been so cruelly tested within the sanctity of the Church”.

The head of the Church in Ireland, Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh, said lighting the candles of atonement would bring to mind,
 “our brothers and sisters, and their families, who have been left with a lifelong suffering as a result of abuse, whose trust was so deeply betrayed and whose faith has been so cruelly tested within the sanctity of the Church by perpetrators of abuse”.
The annual Day of Prayer for Survivors and Victims of Sexual Abuse took place on Friday 15 February with candles of atonement lit in cathedrals and parishes throughout Ireland.
The atonement candles were blessed and dedicated by the bishops during a retreat in the Knock shrine,  and are a symbol of repentance, hope and light in the darkness
The Day of Prayer for Victims and Survivors of Abuse is an initiative started by Pope Francis. It was first marked in Irish dioceses and parishes in 2017.
Archbishop Martin,  will represent the Irish Church at the Vatican summit on safeguarding people from abuse
“Many have spoken to me about the importance of prayer for survivors, and for the need for the Church to be open to justice, to atone and never forget them.”
He said he had been humbled by survivors’ courage and overwhelmed by their generosity of spirit.
“It is my intention to relay the lived experience and insights of Irish survivors, both personally to Pope Francis, and more widely to the safeguarding meeting in Rome later this month.”
The accompanying prayer was written by an abuse survivor and the Archbishop of Armagh expresses the hope that, “the ‘Candle of Atonement’ and accompanying prayer are offered as a reminder to all of the need for us to atone, to ask forgiveness as a Church for the suffering caused by abuse.”
“The Candle of Atonement and accompanying prayer are offered as a reminder to all of the need for us to atone, to ask forgiveness as a Church for the suffering caused by abuse. My hope is that these candles will be lit in cathedrals and parishes across the country as a reminder of the need for atonement and that they will symbolise repentance, light in the darkness and hope,” Dr Martin said.
People are asked to light candles at all Masses from 15 to 17 February, and also on the weekend of 23 to 24 February while the safeguarding meeting is taking place with Pope Francis in Rome.
Candle of Atonement Prayer
Lord, forgive us our many sins.
We grieve and repent with all our hearts for having offended you, for our great failings and neglect of the young and vulnerable.
We place all of those who have been hurt by the Church in any way into your loving hands and under the protection of Our Blessed Mother.
Lord, bring peace to their broken lives and show us all the way out of darkness and into the light of your Word.
May we as the people of God be more fully human, more fully Christ-like and more fully your people, that we may see the errors of the past and go forward with renewed hope and faith in Christ and in our Church.
Amen.
Edited from Catholic Ireland. Net

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