A priest friend tweeted about this crucial project today, and I’m happy to share it here as well.
Our help is needed to build a new cathedral in Bahrain, dedicated to Our Lady of Arabia. It seems to me that this is a fine opportunity for our Lenten almsgiving. This page has some information about the project, and it also provides a video, which I embed below. Please take a few minutes to watch it. This is a great opportunity to help Christians who live in conditions far worse than ours, who are living their faith in an often hostile environment. Many people in this region of the world have to worship in “underground” churches.
I might possibly take issue with the good Bishop’s comments around 7:00, where he speaks about the Cathedral’s being a place even to talk with non-Christians about non-faith-related things; he downplays the idea of converting them to the Catholic faith. Hopefully, our goal is to convert everyone to the Catholic faith, since it is the true Church founded by Jesus Christ, the one Savior of mankind. However, I also understand the very difficult and sensitive situation in which the Bishop lives and works, where people who convert from Islam, in some of those countries, can be put to death, etc. So he does have to be careful about how he speaks about such things, and that may well have been the case here.
Think for a moment about the parish church that you worship in; perhaps you were around when it was built, but in many cases these churches were built from the sacrificial generosity of our ancestors. That is certainly the case with our own Cathedral in Birmingham.
Here we all have an opportunity to take part in building something that will serve people for generations to come. There are many opportunities at home but let’s see if we can help those afar as well. Please watch the video above, and if you wish to make a Lenten gift, go to this page to do so.