Cardinal Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Latin Catholic Patriarch of Jerusalem, has called for a day of fasting and prayer on October 17, 2023 for peace in the Holy Land. The recent outbreak of terrorist violence coupled with the state of Israel’s ongoing military measures in Gaza risks the safety and lives of millions of people in the region.
Cardinal Pizzaballa is urging Catholics to organize times of prayer with Eucharistic adoration and recitation of the Rosary “to deliver to God the Father our thirst for peace, justice, and reconciliation.” Undertaking a personal sacrifice, such as fasting, is also recommended. In his call, the cardinal stated:
In this time of sorrow and dismay, we do not want to remain helpless. We cannot let death and its sting (1 Cor. 15:55) be the only word we hear. That is why we feel the need to pray, to turn our hearts to God the Father. Only in this way we can draw the strength and serenity needed to endure these hard times, by turning to him, in prayer and intercession, to implore and cry out to God amidst this anguish.
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops also reiterated the patriarch's call.
We ask that on Tuesday, October 17, everyone hold a day of fasting, abstinence, and prayer. Let us organize prayer times with Eucharistic adoration and with the recitation of the Rosary to Our Blessed Virgin Mary. ...
This is the way we all come together despite everything, and unite collectively in prayer, to deliver to God the Father our thirst for peace, justice, and reconciliation.