Christmas Reflection – The Nativity
“Mary and Joseph found accommodations in one of Bethlehem’s hillside caves. It offered some protection from the biting cold of a December night, nothing more. Air, heavy with moisture seeping through damp earthen walls; stifling odours of cattle; darkness made all the more emphatic by a lantern’s frail light and the smallest patch of night horizon, too low for stars – yes, there would be room here. And here, Mary and Joseph loved God as He was never loved on earth.
God can be loved – wholeheartedly – anywhere. Loving God does not depend on the kind of a place I’m in – it depends on the kind of a person I am.” Father Peyton’s Rosary Prayer Book; 1984, p.5.
May we wish all cardinals, bishops, priests, friends, benefactors, Global Rosary Relay participants, Rosary Thursday participants, Worldpriest representatives, volunteers, and members of the Worldpriest Global Apostolate team a happy Christmas and a holy and a blessed New Year for 2023.
Founder – Worldpriest Global Apostolate
As we approach the end of 2022, we reflect on a year of great success and fulfilment for the Worldpriest Global Apostolate when we recall some highlights from a year that touched the lives of millions of people all around the world.
Steep rise in Annual Global Rosary Relay 2022 participation
In 2022 we witnessed a significant increase in participation for the Annual Global Rosary Relay for the Sanctification of Priests yet again, as the number of people joining in around the world on 24 June multiplied. While communications technology was again a factor in the increase, it was principally due to the hard work of individual parishes and dioceses spreading the word and driving numbers upwards again. So, while it would be impossible to give an accurate estimate of total numbers, we know the event enriched the lives of many millions of people praying in multiple languages on every continent. The 2022 video promotion was a powerful production. See: Global Rosary Relay 2022 – YouTube
Thanks must go to all the people who through their hard work and commitment contributed to this great success, by ensuring that the word was spread to every corner of the world, all constituting a beautiful gift to Our Lady in thanksgiving for our priests, who daily serve the people of God entrusted to their care around the globe. https://www.worldpriest.com/participating-prayer-location-list/
St. John the Baptist Church at the Grotto in Winslow, Maine, USA
We are already well advanced in our plans for next year’s Annual Global Rosary Relay prayer event, which will take place on 16 June 2023. See Annual Global Rosary Relay – World Priest
Japan wins the 2022 Worldpriest Annual Award
We are pleased to announce that the people of Japan’s district of Kumamoto were the winners of the Worldpriest Annual Global Rosary Relay Award for 2022. This was because of outstanding promotion and participation covering the entire district which took place on 24 June this year.
‘As a result of effective public relations initiatives, the local Association of Catholic Women in every parish in Kumamoto Prefecture in the Diocese of Fukuoka takes part every year in the Rosary Relay Prayer for Priests. They do so with great good will and it is now considered one of the most important activities of the year. To pray for priests in this way is not seen so much as something to be admired, but as a very important and obvious duty. Perhaps for that reason it was a surprise and a humbling experience to have been chosen this year to receive this award,’ says Father Harry O’Carroll.
Our Lady of Japan Catholic Church Tetori, Kumamoto City
Kumamoto is situated in the extreme south-west of Japan, where a dedicated group of parishioners achieved an outstanding level of promotion and participation in 2022. The prestigious award presentation is taking place on 8 December, marking the Solemnity of The Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Our Lady of Japan Catholic Church Tetori, Kumamoto City. The presentation will be made to Fr. John Naoaki Sakurai, Head of Kumamoto Church District and will be presented to Fr. Sakurai by Fr. Harry O’Carroll SSC, who has been ministering in Japan for over 50 years, along with Ms Margareta Maria Yuko Sakanashi, President of the Kumamoto Catholic Women’s Association. Many congratulations to all involved as we pray that the Annual Global Rosary Relay will now spread to additional prayer locations in Japan.
The sixth anniversary of Rosary Thursday is celebrated
Worldpriest celebrates the sixth anniversary of Worldpriest Rosary Thursday; this unique prayer concept was launched on 22 December 2017. For details see: Rosary Thursday – World Priest.
We also celebrate the second year of the Worldpriest Virtual Rosary Thursday, prayed on the last Thursday of each month as we reflect on the Luminous Mysteries of the Rosary for the Sanctification of Priests, led by a priest prayer guide, with inspirational meditations attracting increasing numbers of people to join prayerfully as part of a global community united in prayer in various locations worldwide. A Rosary Thursday recording is available on Worldpriest Youtube and all Social Media following each time of prayer.
For 2023 we are already almost fully booked, with exceptional priest prayer leaders to facilitate participants every month throughout the coming year via Zoom.
Archbishop Eamon Martin
We are also honoured and blessed to have, for the first Virtual Thursday Rosary of 2023, Archbishop Eamon Martin, Primate of all Ireland, and President of the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference, who will lead the event on Thursday 26 January. Invitations to register and join in prayer on the day will be issued in early January 2023 and will take place via Zoom.
Father Lawrence Lew OP was our Worldpriest special guest priest prayer leader for the last Rosary Thursday for the year. Join and pray with Father Lew at any time of your choosing.