The universal annual prayer octave for Christian unity was inaugurated here at St Joseph Seminary Jeppu Mangalore on 18 January 2024 at 5.30 pm.
Most Rev Dr Peter Paul Saldanha, Bishop of Mangalore Diocese, Most Rev. Hemachandra Kumar, Bishop of The Church of South India, Karnataka Southern Diocese along with the seminary Rector Very Rev. Ronald Serrao, the Diocesan Secretary for Ecumenism Rev Rupesh Madtha, Secretary for Mangalore Christian Council Rev Prabhuraj, Rev Sunil Thomas, Rev Francis Dsouza, Rev Binu John and others initiated the prayer week.
Many seminarians from Jeppu seminary and Karnataka Theological college, many Priests, Religious and Lay Faithful took part in the prayer service. The CCBI secretary for Ecumenism Rev Baptist Pais SVD was present for the spiritual meet.
Prayer Octave for Christian unity is an annual exercise among the mainline churches all over the world from January 18 to 25, directed by the World Council of Churches ( WCC). This intends to bring together all the churches in prayer. Despite their differences they join hearts in prayer and join hands for service of human kind.
The theme of the year 2024 is “You shall love the Lord your God…and your neighbour as yourself” ( Luke 10:27).
The closing ceremony of this prayer octave will be held in KTC Balmata on 25 January 2024.
The Mangalore Diocese has been holding Ecumenical Sunday in the diocese since 2023. Accordingly, every church in the diocese will have liturgy, homily and prayers on Christian unity and the people of difference communities of mainline churches, wherever possible, will be invited to join the unity prayer.
The Ecumenical Sunday is initiated by the Ecumenical Commission in the diocese coordinated by Rev Rupesh Madtha and guided by Most Rev. Bishop Peter Paul Saldanha.