Twenty-four countries on Wednesday were consecrated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary at the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima in Fatima, Portugal.

In a March 25 ceremony that included the recitation of the rosary and a litany asking the Blessed Virgin Mary to pray for the afflicted, Fatima’s bishop, Cardinal Antonio Marto, renewed the consecration of Portugal and Spain to Jesus and Mary, and added the names of twenty-four other countries.

In response to the global coronavirus pandemic, the Portuguese bishops’ conference announced last week they would reconsecrate Portugal to Christ and Mary on the evening of March 25. Shortly after the announcement, the Spanish bishops’ conference requested that their country also be consecrated in the same liturgy.

The Portuguese bishops subsequently invited the heads of other national bishops’ conferences to request that their nations be added as well. 

In addition to Spain and Portugal, the other 22 countries consecrated at the request of their respective episcopal conferences are: Albania, Bolivia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Slovakia, Guatemala, Hungary, India, Mexico, Moldova, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Kenya, the Dominican Republic, Romania, Tanzania, East Timor and Zimbabwe.

The cardinal also prayed for “children, the elderly and the most vulnerable,” asking the Blessed Virgin Mary to “comfort doctors, nurses, healthcare professionals, and volunteer caregivers. Strengthen families and reinforce us in citizenship and solidarity.”

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