Madagascar: “I was in prison and you visited me”

On the Sunday after Easter, the Church celebrates the Feast of the Divine Mercy, a message that has become the life’s work of Father Henryk Sawarski. A native Pole, the missionary has been working on the island of Madagascar for more than 40 years. He has been a pastoral worker at the prison of Port-Bergé since 2015. Time and again, he has witnessed God touch the souls of the inmates and help them to begin a new life. Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) donated AUD $33,700 to set up a chapel and a small library to carry out pastoral care at the prison.

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Portrait Fr. Henryk Sawarski. Copyright Aid to the Church in Need.

Father Henryk Sawarski had never set foot in a prison before starting to work there as a pastoral worker. “When I drove by a prison, I saw the prison walls topped by barbed wire, or heard people talking about it,” the Polish missionary explained to the pastoral charity. Father Henryk was transferred to the diocese of Port-Bergé in the year that was declared an Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy by Pope Francis. “The Pope issued a call for corporal and spiritual acts of mercy. When I found out that the prison didn’t have any clergy, I suddenly realized that this was the place where I could best spread the mercy of God. Today I know that I myself was given this epiphany by the Merciful Jesus.”

‘Courageous and faithful’ to the end - ACN mourns the sad demise of Bishop Ballin

ACN tribute to brave Bishop who ministered in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain 

A BISHOP, who died on Easter Sunday after a lifetime of ministry in some of the most difficult places in which to be a Christian, has been praised for his “courageous and dynamic apostolate in the heart of Islam”.

Comboni Missionary Bishop Camillo Ballin, who died aged 75 after on a long illness on 12th April, ministered across the Middle East before being appointed the first-ever Apostolic Vicar of the Northern Arabia, covering Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.

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Baharain, December 2012. Bishop Camillo Ballin, M.C.C.I., the Vicar Apostolic of Northern Arabia and Titular Bishop of Arna.
Photographer: Lucia Wicki-Rensch
Copyright: Aid to the Church in Need.

Prayer action asking contemplative monasteries to join us in a “bell of prayers” during Coronavirus Pandemic
Aid to the Church in Need International has started a special prayer action asking contemplative monasteries to join us in a “bell of prayers” to comfort and encourage ACN benefactors their, families, partners and loved ones affected by the coronavirus pandemic.


Morocco, At the convent of the Holy Family and Saint Therese of the contemplative Carmelite Sisters in Tanger:
Sister Maria Isabel de la Santisima Trinidad (Mother Superior of the monastery) and Sister Maria Vi. Copyright Aid to the Church in Need.

NIGER: Father Walter Maccalli expresses his “surprise” and “joy” for the video showing his brother, Father Pier Luigi Maccalli, who was abducted in Niger in 2018

08.04.2020 - Written by Paolo Aido.

“It’s great news, and we are delighted and hopeful that everything may turn out well”, he said, in a brief recorded statement sent to the Portuguese office of the international Catholic pastoral charity and pontifical foundation ACN, after news came through of a recent video showing his brother, who was abducted in September 2018 in the parish of Bomoanga, in Niger, close to the frontier with Burkina Faso.

Aid to the Church in Need International commits $8.5M to support priests and nuns serving communities most vulnerable to COVID-19

To help mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN), the international pontifical charity serving the persecuted and suffering Church around the world, is providing AUD $8.5M in emergency funding to priests and nuns caring for the most vulnerable communities around the world.

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Philippines 2020: ACN Philippines President Archbishop Socrates Villegas gives Palm Sunday blessing amidst COVID-19.
Photographer: Sabino Mejia
Copyright: Aid to the Church in Need

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