Reuters' Philip Pullella reports via ABS-CBNNews.com that Pope Francis led Roman Catholics in prayer on Sunday during the first worldwide "Holy Hour," an event "in which participants prayed at the same time around the globe for those suffering from war, slave labour, human trafficking and the economic crisis."
According to the report, the Vatican asked Catholics around the world to "gather in cathedrals, neighbourhood parishes and monasteries" between 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. Rome time (1500-1600 GMT) to join the Pope "in what is known as a Eucharistic adoration - praying before a consecrated communion host." Pope Francis prayed in St. Peter's Basilica.
For an hour, Catholics were asked to pray for two things: first, for those "who still suffer slavery and who are victims of war, human trafficking, drug running and slave labour" as well as for the "unemployed, the elderly, migrants, the homeless, prisoners and those who experience marginalisation". The second prayer intention "was for the 1.2 billion member Church itself and that it be 'without stain or blemish', an apparent allusion to scandals that have undermined its credibility, such as the sexual abuse of children by clergy."
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