On March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation of Our Lord, at Noon, Archbishop Eamon Martin, Archbishop of Armagh and the Primate of all Ireland, will join with bishops and priests from throughout the island nation in consecrating the people of Ireland to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for strength and protection from the Coronavirus, Covid-19.
People are invited to join the consecration in a moment of prayer with their families or as individuals. The Consecration also coincides with Pope Francis’ invitation to people all over the world in praying the Lord’s Prayer at Angelus time tomorrow.
Over the last nine days, beginning on Saint Patrick’s Day, many have been praying a novena in preparation for the moment of Consecration on March 25, which includes the Prayer of Consecration of Ireland to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Bishops and priests will lead the Consecration from their homes, cathedrals, and churches across the country. The faithful are invited to join their local priest or bishop from their home, via webcam, to prayerfully participate in this Act of Consecration during these unprecedented and worrying days.
“As Church now, more than ever, we are committed to offering prayer, solidarity, and compassion in our society,” says Archbishop Eamon. “Social distancing cannot be allowed to create social isolation and, through prayer, as Pope Francis said on Sunday, we can overcome: ‘In these trying days, while humanity trembles due to the thread of the pandemic, I would like to propose to all Christians that together we lift our voices towards Heaven.’
“Pope Francis has shown strong pastoral leadership at this horrendous time especially when we consider the impact that the rapid devastation COVID19 has wrought across Italy. Tomorrow [March 25], at midday, to mark the Feast of the Annunciation of Our Lord, as we consecrate Ireland and our people to the Immaculate Heart of Mary for protection against the coronavirus, Pope Francis has asked ‘all Christians of the various confessions, to invoke the Almighty, the omnipotent God, to recite at the same time the prayer that Jesus, our Lord, taught us’, – the Our Father. Pope Francis prayerfully said, ‘may the Lord listen to the united prayer of all of His disciples who are preparing themselves to celebrate the victory of the Risen Christ.’
Archbishop Eamon Martin concluded, “In an act of profound prayer, solidarity and compassion, through our prayers, let us join in spiritual communion with Our Lord, Our Blessed Mother, Pope Francis and with each other.”
Photo: Archbishop Eamon Martin with his mother, Catherine, in her 90s. She passed away March 21, 2020. Credit: Cliff Donaldson. ref. Irish Times