FOR THE REFUGEES, FOR THE 600,000 INTERNALLY DISPLACED AND THE 80,000 CENTRAL AFRICANS WHO HAVE BEEN FORCED TO FLEE TO NEIGHBOURING COUNTRIE
“O Wisdom, you come forth from the mouth of the Most High. You fill the universe and hold all things together in a strong yet gentle manner. O come to teach us the way of truth.”
COME QUICKLY, LORD. COME, O SAVIOUR!
GRANT US PEACE
“Christians in the Archdiocese of Bangui went to sleep last night planning to get up today to join the diocesan pilgrimage to the Marian sanctuary at Ngukomba, some 24 kilometers (14 miles) from Bangui, on the Damara route.
It turned out very differently. The firing of weapons of war awoke everyone in Bangui. There were reports of clashes between armed groups: on the one hand fighters belonging to anti-balaka forces, and, on the other hand, Seleka forces.
Some residents caught between warring parties stayed holed up at home; others found refuge in churches and with religious communities. By mid-morning, the parishes of St. John of Galabadja and Bangui’s Cathedral of Our Lady the Immaculate had taken in close to 1,000 people; St. Peter of Gobongo about 2,500; St. Bernard more than 3,000; Our Lady of Africa more than 3,500; and St. Paul of the Rapids more than 5,000.
The stream of people seeking shelter continued to grow in the afternoon, doubling in size, with their number tripling by nightfall. Church facilities also took in the wounded who have been without medical care until now.”
Letter P. Dieu-Béni Mganga, 5th December,
Archidiócesis de Bangui
REMEMBER, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help, or sought thy intercession was left unaided. Inspired with this confidence, I fly to thee, O Virgin of virgins, my Mother; to thee do I come; before thee I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer me.
Text by Maria Lozano, ACN International
Adapted by Amanda Griffin, ACN Canada