My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Jesus instructed His Church to go out to all nations baptizing and teaching others to follow His command. World Mission Sunday, Oct. 23, 2016, is our invitation to fulfill this mandate by offering the graces of the holy Mass and generous contributing financial support. Catholic ministries and services in more than 1,100 dioceses and religious communities are dependent on World Mission Sunday for both spiritual and monetary resources. As the Year of Mercy comes to an end, the works of mercy encourage us to serve those who would otherwise be forgotten.
The heartfelt plea from Pope Francis in this Year of Mercy recalls the missionary mandate. He writes, “This year marks the 90th anniversary of World Missionary Day, first approved by Pope Pius XI in 1926 and organized by the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith. It is appropriate then to recall the wise instructions of my predecessors who ordered that to this society be destined all the offerings collected in every diocese, parish, religious community, association and ecclesial movement throughout the world for the care of Christian communities in need and for supporting the proclamation of the Gospel even to the ends of the earth. Today too we believe in this sign of missionary ecclesial communion. Let us not close our hearts within our own particular concerns, but let us open them to all of humanity.”
May God reward your participation in the annual collection for The Society for the Propagation of the Faith by inspiring your faith, lifting up the hearts of those you help serve and extending the peace of His kingdom.
Faithfully yours in the Lord,
Bishop William Patrick Callahan
Bishop of La Crosse