Amid the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in the Holy Land, Pope Francis has called for a day of prayer and fasting on Friday, Oct. 27.
At the end of his general audience on Oct. 18, Pope Francis said the 27th will be “a day of penance to which I invite sisters and brothers of the various Christian denominations, those belonging to other religions, and all those who have at heart the cause of peace in the world, to join in as they see fit.”
A prayer vigil will take place at 6 p.m. in St. Peter’s Square, where the faithful will join the Pope to participate in “an hour of prayer in a spirit of penance to implore peace in our time, peace in this world.”
“I ask all the particular Churches to participate by arranging similar activities involving the people of God,” the Pope said.
Here are several ways to take part:
If your local parish is already planning to have a Mass for this day of prayer for the Holy Land, consider attending. Some archdioceses have already announced Masses taking place, such as those of Detroit and Philadelphia. However, if you’re unable to make it or your parish is not having a Mass specifically for this day, you can also attend a daily Mass.
Make a Holy Hour
The tradition of a Holy Hour goes back to 1674 when Jesus appeared to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and instructed her to spend an hour every Thursday meditating on his sufferings in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Typically, a Holy Hour is done in adoration before the Blessed Sacrament; however, a Holy Hour can be done at any time and anywhere — in your home, in a church, or even outside in nature. During a Holy Hour you can read Scripture, listen to worship music, journal, spend time in contemplation, or simply sit and talk with God.
Pray the Rosary
As many of the saints have said, the rosary is a powerful weapon. Dedicate a rosary for peace in Israel and Palestine. If you don’t have time to say a rosary all at once, break it up throughout the day by saying a decade when you can.