Marian March 2008, at the close of the Month of the Rosary, with the theme: “Mary, living expression of our identity, protect and defend your people of the Dominican Republic.”
Oct 26, 2008
Santo Domingo (Agenzia Fides) – The Archdiocese of Santo Domingo will celebrate their traditional Marian March 2008 on Sunday, October 26, with the theme: “Mary, lively expression of our identity, protect and defend your people of the Dominican Republic.” The March will begin at 3pm, and will end in Plaza de España, where a special Mass will be held, presided by Cardinal Nicholas de Jesus, Lopez Rodriguez, Archbishop of Santo Domingo.
The event will serve as a closure for the Month of the Rosary and a manifestation of the people's profound love for the Most Holy Virgin Mary. Thus, all parishes, schools, apostolic movements, new communities, and all other Church institutions are called to participate, each one carrying an image of the Blessed Mother, each according to their own patroness (advocation of the Virgin Mary). The March will be led by an image of the “Virgen de La Altagracia,” Protector of the People of the Dominican Republic.
The theme that was chosen is based on the Archdiocesan Pastoral Plan that is focusing on the value of the identity of the people of the Dominican Republic, where Mary forms an essential part of their lives. It also shows the Church's concern for the path being taken by the country's society, as is evident in the themes from past years. For example, in 2007, the theme was: “For respect for life, we walk with Mary,” which led the Church's campaign for life and against abortion. In 2006, the theme was: “Our Mother gathers us together as brothers,” which focused on the fight against the plague of delinquency that the country faces.
In a message meant for the entire Archdiocese, Cardinal Lopez Rodriguez said that today, as in the past, their identity is at risk, due to the “fresh social and political turbulence, for the spread of a culture that is cold and hostile towards the Christian tradition, for the emergence of various religious groups that try to respond in their own manner to the thirst for God that our people have” (cf. Aparecida Document, 10). He also mentioned that “this situation is worsened by the reality of poverty that still exists today and the rise in drug-trafficking, with all the painful consequences this implies.” Thus, remembering their identity is of great importance. The Cardinal also expressed his hope that the Marian March 2008 would take on a profound missionary meaning, “preparing us for the Continental Mission that we will hold in our Archdiocese from 2009-2011, when we will celebrate our 5th Centenary of ecclesial life.”