Here is part of the prayer prayed by Pope St John Paul II on 25 March 1984: ‘“We have recourse to your protection, holy Mother of God”. … And therefore, O Mother of individuals and peoples, you who know all their sufferings and their hopes, you who have a mother’s awareness of all the struggles between good and evil, between light and darkness, which afflict the modern world, accept the cry which we, moved by the Holy Spirit, address directly to your Heart. Embrace, with the love of the Mother and Handmaid of the Lord, this human world of ours, which we entrust and consecrate to you, for we are full of concern for the earthly and eternal destiny of individuals and peoples …’

This prayer has a heightened significance in these challenging times with Pope St John Paul II could not have foreseen. May the Immaculate Heart of our blessed Mother gather us all to herself, and may her Son bless us all.