Vespers for life

Bishop to celebrate Vigil for Life at the Cathedral for start of the Advent season

bishop_rickenGREEN BAY, Wis. (Nov. 23, 2010) -- Bishop David Ricken will celebrate a Vigil for Life and First Vespers of Advent at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, Green Bay, at 6 p.m. Saturday, November 27.

The event will be part of a worldwide celebration called for by Pope Benedict XVI, who will celebrate the vigil on November 27 in St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Pope Benedict has asked bishops, and all believers to hold solemn vigils for all nascent -- newly developing -- human life in their parishes, religious communities, associations and movements.

The vigil at the Green Bay cathedral will include Evening Prayer, the Rosary, and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament.

Power of prayer to protect life

"At this moment in history, when societies are now endorsing the killing of humans as a perceived solution to social, economic, and environmental problems, the Holy Father is reminding us of the necessity and power of prayer to protect human life," said Mary McClusky, special projects coordinator at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities.

Christina Pallini, Respect Life Consultant for the Diocese of Green Bay, called the celebration an "awesome way to start an entire new Church year."

Heart of the church

"Prayer is at the heart of church and it’s thrilling that the Holy Father is challenging people to look at the power of prayer and how it can be effective in bringing about change in helping people to increase their understanding and respect for human life from it' s very beginning at fertilization," Pallini said.

Cardinal Daniel DiNardo, chairman of the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities, in his October Respect Life Month said, "I heartily encourage all Catholics, whether at home or traveling over the Thanksgiving holidays, to take part in this special prayer."

Prayer aids available

Vigil prayer aids in both English and Spanish are available for pastors and parish directors from:
  • the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Secretariats of Divine Worship and Pro-Life Activities at
  • Sister Ann Rehrauer, phone (920) 272-8292 or 1-877-500-3580, ext. 8292, or Clare Sturm, phone (920) 272-8311 or 1-877-500-3580, ext. 8311, or e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it for

Strong defender of life

The Catholic Church is a strong defender of human life from conception through natural death, as reflected in the Church's teachings, advocacy for the common good and against unjust laws and through its hospitals, Catholic Charities and numerous other ways.

Prayer provides a foundation for all the Church and individual Catholics do. During Advent, which marks the start of the Church's liturgical year, Catholics prepare for the coming of the Lord at the end of time and the celebration of Christmas -- the birth of the second person of the Trinity as a human being after nine months in the womb of Mary, his mother.


Who we are

The Catholic Diocese of Green Bay works to bring the Good News of Jesus Christ by helping people in need and by providing academic, leadership and spiritual formation opportunities to parish and school leaders.  Established in 1868, the Diocese is composed of 345,000 Catholics in 16 counties: Brown, Calumet, Door, Florence, Forest, Kewaunee, Langlade, Manitowoc, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Outagamie, Shawano, Waupaca, Waushara and Winnebago.


Deacon Ray DuBois
Director of Communications

Phone: (920) 272-8213 or 1-877-500-3580, ext. 8213
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Leah Gabrielson
(920) 272-8209 or 1-877-500-3580, ext. 8209
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