Right now, Catholic and Orthodox pilgrims are traveling across Russia with a replica of the icon of Our Lady of Czestochowa on a pilgrimage called “From Ocean to Ocean International Campaign in Defense of Life.” If all goes as planned, the icon will travel across 8 time zones (11,000 miles and 24 countries) ending in Fatima, Portugal, and hopefully from there to America in the Spring of 2013 (boy, do we need her intervention!). The purpose of the pilgrimage in Russia is to invoke the intercession of Our Lady, Ark of the New Covenant, asking her to end the scourge of abortion which has been legal in Russia since 1920 and to restore a culture of life. They have the dubious honor of being the first country in the world to legalize abortion.
Fr. Peter West, of Human Life International, has a very interesting article on Zenit, documenting how Our Lady has helped the Church throughout the ages. Just as the Jews carried the Ark of the Covenant into battle, so we too should carry the Mother of God into battle to fight against the culture of death.The Ark contained the tablets of the law while Mary’s womb contained the Son of God, in Whom the prophets and the law found their fulfillment.
As the icon made its way up a river, one observer noted: “It is hard to describe the reactions of people in boats and ships passing by. They waved to us and in various ways showed their admiration and support.”
Go to the From Ocean to Ocean International Campaign in Defense of Life website to follow the progress in countries such as the Ukraine, Latvia, Croatia, Italy, Germany, Spain, Ireland, etc. Let us pray that the Mother of God will touch all hearts who see her image.