The Rimini Meeting will join the day of prayer announced by CEI, tomorrow 15th August, for the persecution of Christians

Press Meeting

Rimini, 14 August 2014 – The Meeting for Friendship Amongst People will join, firmly, the initiative of Italian Bishops who, accepting Pope Francis’s constant appeals, invite all church communities to take part in a day of prayer as a concrete sign of closeness with how many are worn-out by this hard repression.
«The suffer and pain of many brothers present us the Mystery of men who are sacrificing themselves for their and everybody’s truth, because religious freedom concerns directly with the nature of man, with his research of truth». Declared the Meeting President, Emilia Guarnieri.
The appeal spread by CEI for tomorrow prayer underlines that there are places in which the christian presence is in danger: it risks extinction from the same places where it comes from, starting from Holy Land. In the appeal for Persecuted Christians, that Meeting has spread last year, firmed by hundreds of guests and personalities participating and over seventy thousands people in the following months, we have underlined that violence toward Christians «besides offending human dignity, represents a threat for security and peace […] exactly as the evangelical message is itself an objection against conformism, irreducible to any power. Therefore the existence of Christians is a cure for power intrusiveness, […] guarantee for everybody’s freedom, not only for Christians».
Thereby, the Meeting will join the Pilgrimage proposed by Comunione e Liberazione from Rimini, to the Madonna di Bonora Sanctuary (Montefiore Conca), which will leave from the main door of Rocca di Montefiore Conca, at 6.15 p.m.

This year the Meeting will reintroduce the appeal in the final meeting “Witnesses of freedom”, introduced by Monica Maggioni, with the participation of Paul Bhatti (Pakistan), bishops Kaigama (Nigeria) and Warduni (Iraq) and journalist Quirico. We have invited men who, with the story of their life and the sufferings of their community, give testimony of the irreducible tension toward freedom and the mystery of a freedom already possible and tested even in persecution. Till the opening meeting on 24th Sunday with the Custodian of the Holy Land, father Pizzaballa – “The power of heart. Researchers of the truth” – the Meeting wants to be the story of how the real cause that nowadays can change history is the heart of man, his inextinguishable desire of truth and good.
Even the youngest will be protagonists of an initiative: A message of peace from the Meeting’s children, thought to let them share in what is happening in war and persecution.
With an eye turned particularly to Iraq, Gaza and Nigeria, everyday in the Children’s Village children who will be at the Meeting, with a small donation of 1 euro, could write a message that will be translated in English and Arabic and will be fasten to some balloons which are going to be released in the air on Wednesday and Saturday. A proposal that involves also some partners from the Meeting.
The amount collected will be then doomed to the Patriarchate of Baghdad, which will provide to distribute according to the needs of each family.