Dear Confreres, Sisters, associates and friends,
In recent weeks, we have seen new outbreaks of violence and persecution of Christians in different parts of the world. We have been praying for these situations, for peace and hope, for comfort for the families of the victims, and for the local Churches in many countries.
This week we have seen these attacks come much closer to our confreres and their families. In Burkina-Faso and in Niger, there have been a series of attacks on villages and churches that have taken the lives of several priests and many faithful. Although none of our confreres has been directly involved, these attacks have taken place in an area where we have deep roots. Many families of our confreres live in these villages. These priests are friends and coworkers of the Redemptorists. This closeness calls us deeper solidarity and prayer.
Aware that our brothers and sisters in so many places are suffering violent persecution, we continue to pray for them and also for their persecutors. We remember the priests, sisters, and lay leaders who bring comfort and hope, and who are especially vulnerable and whose lives are in danger. And we cannot forget to pray for all those who are working for peace and reconciliation in our wounded world.
May our witness to the Redeemer and our solidarity with the poor and the persecuted, bring hope and peace, comfort and strength to these very difficult situations.
Copiosa Apud Eum Redemptio.
In Christ our Redeemer,
Michael Brehl, C. Ss. R.,