VATICAN CITY — As Russia’s violent monthlong invasion continued to devastate Ukraine, Pope Francis laid the fates of both countries at the feet of Mary in the hopes that peace would finally reign.
“Mother of God and our mother, to your Immaculate Heart we solemnly entrust and consecrate ourselves, the church and all humanity, especially Russia and Ukraine,” the pope said March 25, pronouncing the Act of Consecration after leading a Lenten penance service in St. Peter’s Basilica.
Praying before a statue of Mary that was loaned by the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima at San Vittoriano on the outskirts of Rome, the pope pleaded with Mary to “accept this act that we carry out with confidence and love. Grant that war may end, and peace spread throughout the world.”
Sitting in front of the statue, which was placed before the steps of the main altar on a red platform and adorned with white roses, the pope proclaimed the act of consecration.
During the prayer, the pope paused at several moments to gaze at the statue of Mary before continuing to recite the prayer. “To you we consecrate the future of the whole human family, the needs and expectations of every people, the anxieties and hopes of the world,” he prayed.
Bishops around the world united their dioceses’ prayers to the pope’s, reciting the prayer at the same time.
Find the prayer of consecration in English, Spanish and Vietnamese at sdcatholic.org/consecration.