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As country inches towards LS polls, Christians undertake Prayer for general good

Bengaluru, May 13 (UNI) The day after crucial assembly polls in Karnataka and as the country gets closer to Parliamentary elections, the Archdiocese of Delhi Archbishop Anil Couto has announced a prayer and fast campaign for the country and its leaders on Sunday.
“We are witnessing a turbulent political atmosphere which poses a threat to the democratic principles enshrined in the Constitution and the secular fabric of our nation,” says a letter from Archbishop Anil Couto of Delhi addressed to all parish priests and religious institutions in the archdiocese.
The letter dated May 8 was read during Masses throughout the archdiocese on Sunday, May 13.
Archbishop Couto says praying for the country and its political leaders all the time has been a “hallowed practice” of the archdiocese. It is all the more necessary “when we approach the General Elections,” he says.
“As we look forward towards 2019 when we will have a new government let us begin a prayer campaign for our country from May 13, the anniversary of the Apparition of the Blessed Mother,” the archbishop has appealed.
He urged people to consecrate themselves and the country to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
The NDA government headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi will complete its five-year term on May 26, 2019.
The prayer campaign for the day comprised observing a day fast and conducting an hour of adoration on every Friday for a year.
"I request that we observe a Day of Fast every Friday of the week by forgoing at least one meal and offering our penance and all our sacrifices for our spiritual renewal and that of our nation," the Archbishop said in his missive.
The prayer also seeks God’s grace to always uphold in highest esteem “the dreams of our founding fathers and the values of our Constitution – equality, liberty and fraternity.”
The prayer recited also had concerns for poor, Dalits and tribals.
"Let the poor of our country be provided with the means of livelihood. Let Dalits, tribals and the marginalised be brought to the mainstream of nation building. Let Justice and Integrity prevail in every sphere of life," the prayer ran.
Meanwhile, former member of the Delhi Minorities Commission A C Michael, also a past secretary of both Diocesan Pastoral Council and Laity Council of Archdiocese of Delhi, welcomed the initiative.
"I thank His Grace for his forward-thinking action. This action of His Grace not only expresses his concern for our country, he is once again guiding his flock to believe in prayer and fasting. This can never be bettered. Kudos to His Grace," Mr Michael said in a statement.
"What I liked the most is the special prayer written for this purpose covers all caste, creed, marginalised and denominations. And most importantly the prayer concludes for the revival of Gospel values upon our nation," he added.
UNI DEVN RS SKB1345
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