Catholic Charity Announces Children’s Rosary Campaign for Sahel Africa, War-torn Countries

Children from South Sudan painting a poster of “One Million Children Praying the Rosary 2021”. Credit: ACN

The Catholic Pontifical and charity foundation, Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) International, is inviting children from across the globe to join the “One million children praying the Rosary” campaign for countries experiencing war and hunger, especially those in Africa’s Sahel region, which has been described as the “world’s most neglected and conflict-ridden region”.

Announcing the event slated for October 18, ACN notes that the children will entrust the people living in the countries experiencing religious persecution, including those in the Sahel region, where people are unable to live in peace, “unto the powerful and loving hands of the divine Father”.

“Concerned with the situations of war, violence and profound poverty that continue to exist in countries such as Ukraine, Nigeria, Myanmar, Pakistan, or regions such as the Middle East, and the Sahel, in Africa, ACN wishes to entrust, in a special way, all those places where people are unable to live in peace unto the powerful and loving hands of the divine Father, through the powerful intercession of the Mother of God,” the peace entity has said in the September 20 report.

This year’s prayer campaign is to focus on “the Father’s love for the world”, the Pontifical charity foundation that supports the people of God in areas experiencing religious persecution and other forms of hardships has said.

Announcing the annual event, which has in the past attracted huge participation from across the globe, ACN says, “Aid to the Church in Need is once again inviting parishes, kindergartens, schools and families to join in the annual prayer initiative ‘One million children praying the Rosary’, which will take place on 18 October, this year.”


ACN President, Mauro Cardinal Piacenza, says that the purpose of this year’s prayer campaign is to ask for peace and unity throughout the world, while encouraging children and young people to trust in God during difficult times.

The poster for this year’s campaign features two opened hands enclosing the globe and supporting it along with the children of every continent, the charity foundation says, and explains, “These hands symbolize the hands of the divine Father, who has created the world in love and who desires to save all peoples and bring them safely to Himself.”

“Looking around at all the wars and wickedness, the persecution, disease and fears that weigh upon our world, people might well ask, ‘Is God really in control?’” Cardinal Piacenza says.

“Yes, He is,” he responds, adding, “But we must also reach out for His outstretched hands and cling to Him. God has reached out to us, through Mary… We believe that if we faithfully recite the Rosary together, then the holy Mother of God will lead us all as one great family into the loving arms of our heavenly Father.”

The Catholic foundation considers the participation of different countries in past campaigns to have been most positive. In 2020, during the Angelus prayer, the Holy Father encouraged all people to join the initiative.

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The ACN webpage offers free materials for those praying in Parishes, schools, children’s groups and families. 

The free information pack contains instructions on how to pray the Rosary, short meditations for children on the Mysteries of the Rosary and an Act of Consecration to Our Lady for children. The online information packs are available, together with coloring pictures, in 26 different languages.

The origins of the prayer initiative, “A million children praying the Rosary”, ACN says, date back to the year 2005 when a group of children were seen praying the Holy Rosary at a local shrine in the Venezuelan capital Caracas, and some of the adults who witnessed the scene were reminded of the words of Padre Pio, who once said: ‘When a million children pray the Rosary, the world will change.’”

“Since then, the campaign has spread rapidly and become a worldwide phenomenon,” the Pontifical charity foundation says.

Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.