WASHINGTON, D.C. — Pope Francis is calling on Christians everywhere to respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic by joining him in praying the Lord’s Prayer at 7:00 a.m. ET (noon in Rome) on Wednesday, March 25. That day marks the Feast of the Annunciation, when the faithful celebrate the angel Gabriel’s visitation to the Virgin Mary, announcing the Incarnation of the Word. The Holy Father offered the invitation on Sunday at the traditional recitation of the Angelus on St. Peter’s Square.
His Holiness also invited Catholics to unite themselves with him as he prays before the Blessed Sacrament on Friday, March 27, at 1:00 p.m. ET (6:00 p.m. in Rome). At the conclusion of that gathering he will give his blessing urbi et orbi (“to the city and the world”) in supplication for an end to the current health crisis. All participants will receive a plenary indulgence, provided they pray for the intentions of the pope and receive Holy Communion and the sacrament of penance when they can.
His Excellency, the Most Reverend Timothy P. Broglio, J.C.D., Archbishop for the Military Services, USA, encourages all Catholics in the U.S. Military, the nation’s Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) medical centers, and civilian service to the federal government beyond U.S. borders, as well as the families of these populations, to take part in both prayer events.
Archbishop Broglio said:
“In this time of universal suffering and challenge praying together is an important element in the healing process. We acknowledge our dependence upon Him and cry for His support in our distress. To do so with our brothers and sisters across the globe—the ordinary reality of this archdiocese—is a priceless gift.”