Bishop Mark is asking the faithful throughout the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown to join him in praying for peace in Ukraine as Russian forces invade the Eastern European country.
The Bishop stands united in prayer with Ukrainian Catholics in that troubled part of the world and with the local Ukrainian Catholic population here in Central Pennsylvania. During this difficult time, he is inviting everyone to join him in praying the following ancient prayer.
We fly to Your patronage, O Virgin Mother of God.
Despise not our prayers in our needs,
but deliver us from all dangers,
since you alone are pure and blessed.
O most glorious Ever-Virgin Mary,
the Mother of Christ our God, accept our prayers
and present them to Your Son and our God,
that for the sake of You, He enlighten and save our souls.
“This prayer is a unique part of the spiritual heritage of the Catholic and Orthodox Christians of Ukraine, dating back to the 10th or 11th century,” Bishop Mark stated. “It is quite similar to the Memorare prayer that most of us learned as children. As we watch the unfolding developments from Ukraine, it is often difficult to process our thoughts and feelings. That’s where a prayer like this can bring calm to our disturbed minds and hearts, and especially to our world.”
Bishop Mark is also asking all parishes in the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown to include a petition praying for peace in Ukraine in their Prayers of the Faithful at upcoming Masses.