World Mission Sunday: A message from Bishop Kulick
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
This year, we celebrate World Mission Sunday on Oct. 23, and we join Catholics worldwide in offering prayers and sacrifices for the Missions of the Church. The Catholic Church has celebrated World Mission Sunday since 1926. This celebration has united Catholics for almost a century in fulfilling our baptismal commitment of sharing our faith in Jesus Christ, of building up the Church throughout the world, and assisting the poor.
The theme for this year’s celebration is “You shall be my witnesses” (Acts 1:8). In Pope Francis’s Message for World Mission Sunday, he emphasizes that every Christian has received the call to bear witness to Jesus Christ and to participate in the work of universal evangelization. The Holy Father advises all Christians to seek strength and guidance from the Holy Spirit to fulfill these obligations. While each of us bears witness where we are, we must also support the mission work that is accomplished throughout the world.
The Society for the Propagation of the Faith is celebrating its 200th anniversary. At one time, the Church in the United States was a recipient of the aid provided by the Society. In 1822, the Church here in the United States began to receive assistance in helping the Church to grow and to evangelize, receiving over $7 million throughout the years. We now have an opportunity to provide material assistance and prayers for the mission Church throughout the world. Our prayers and support today sustain priests, religious and lay pastoral leaders in more than 1,100 mission dioceses in Asia, Africa, the Pacific Islands, and parts of Latin America and Europe as they proclaim the Gospel, build up the Church and serve the poor.
The Church this year is also celebrating the beatification of the Society’s foundress. On May 22, 2022, Pauline Jaricot was declared Blessed. Blessed Pauline Jaricot began the work of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, and we are privileged to continue it. As Pope Francis reminds us, “She accepted God’s inspiration to establish a network of prayer and collection for missionaries so that the faithful could actively participate in the mission ‘to the ends of the earth.’” Our contributions on World Mission Sunday will make it possible for seminarians to receive formation; schools orphanages, and hospitals to be built; and priests and religious brothers and sisters to have food and other essentials provided that will make the proclamation of the Gospel and the celebration of the sacraments possible.
Dear brothers and sisters, I encourage your generosity on World Mission Sunday. Please be generous in prayer, as this is your greatest gift, and also in your financial support of the Church in the Missions. Please be assured of my continued prayers for you and your families.
Gratefully in the Lord,
The Most Reverend Larry J. Kulick, JCL
Bishop of Greensburg