By Leslie Ann G. Aquino
More parishes are set to join this year’s observance of “Red Wednesday” on November 27.
In a statement, the Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) Philippines said a total of 2,065 parishes have committed to participate in the event by illuminating the facade of their churches in red to show their solidarity to all the Christians all over the world who are persecuted because of their faith.
The international pontifical charity organization said the number was more than the 1,136 churches that participated in 2018.
Aside from parishes, a number of Catholic schools and universities are also participating in the activity such as the University of Santo Tomas and Adamson University.
“Packages have been released to all the participants, all of which contain the flow of the ceremony, prayers, and other paraphernalia relevant to the campaign,” ACN said.
However, the main activity will be held at the Manila Cathedral in Intramuros, which will start with a Holy Mass at 6:30 pm.
ACN initiated the Red Wednesday campaign in 2017 to bring attention to the martyrdom of Christians as they battle religious persecutions in many parts of the world.
Based on the Religious Freedom Report of 2018, there are approximately 300 million Christians around the world who live in an environment where they are violently persecuted, discriminated, and prevented to practice the faith.
And ACN said the Philippines is no stranger to these forms of persecution citing the twin explosions in the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Cathedral in Jolo, Sulu this year where almost 20 people died and more than 80 wounded.
“Through this initiative, the foundation seeks to educate Filipinos that not only are Christians more persecuted than any other faith group, but ever-increasing numbers are experiencing the very worst forms of persecution,” said ACN.