GALILEE – On the occasion of the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly that Pope Francis announced and established on the fourth Sunday of July of each year, Bishop Boulos Marcuzzo visited some of the elderly that served the local Church and its institutions for many years. The visit is part of personal and group initiatives that the Latin Patriarchate is taking to express gratitude to the elderly for their service and contributions.
On Sunday, July 25, Bishop Marcuzzo visited Mr. Samir Abunassar and Mr. Akram Karam who worked at the institutions of the Latin Patriarchate and other Churches in Nazareth, and are known for their spirit of volunteering and regular service in the Church.
The bishop then visited Mrs. Evette Sayegh in Reneh, and thanked her for giving 40 years of her life serving at the Latin Patriarchate Schools, of which she spent 25 years as principal of the Patriarchate school in Reneh.
At the invitation of the Parish priest of Reneh Fr. Raed Abu Sahlieh, Bishop Marcuzzo celebrated Holy Mass, during which a short prayer was said for a 7-year-old girl who passed away recently of a terminal illness.
In his homily, Bishop Marcuzzo expressed his thanks to all the elderly for their work in the development of society and the Church. He also focused on Pope Francis’s message for the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly where he talked about the importance of preserving the memory of the elderly, prayer and the passing of faith from one generation to another, from the father and the mother to the children and grandchildren.
Also on this occasion, Pope Francis granted Plenary Indulgences to the elderly and grandparents, and the faithful who dedicate an appropriate time to visit their elderly brothers and sisters who are in need.
Pope Francis established for the first time a World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly to be celebrated on the fourth Sunday of July of every year, a date close to the Feast of Sts. Joachim and Anne, the parents of the Virgin Mary and grandparents of Jesus.
Below you find the prayer for the World Day for Grandparents and the Elderly:
I thank You, Lord,
for the comfort of Your presence:
even in times of loneliness,
You are my hope and my confidence,
You have been my rock and my fortress since my youth!
I thank You for having given me a family
and for having blessed me with a long life.
I thank You for moments of joy and difficulty,
for the dreams that have already come true in my life and for
those that are still ahead of me.
I thank You for this time of renewed fruitfulness to which You
Increase, O Lord, my faith,
make me a channel of your peace,
teach me to embrace those who suffer more than me,
to never stop dreaming
and to tell of your wonders to new generations.
Protect and guide Pope Francis and the Church,
that the light of the Gospel might reach the ends of the earth.
Send Your Spirit, O Lord, to renew the world,
that the storm of the pandemic might be calmed,
the poor consoled and wars ended.
Sustain me in weakness
and help me to live life to the full
in each moment that You give me,
in the certainty that you are with me every day,
even until the end of the age.
Source: Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem