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Archdiocese of Chicago Celebrates the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity Jan. 18–25, 2020

Chicagoland Christian Churches will host ecumenical prayer services and events throughout the week

Chicago, IL (Jan. 15, 2020) – The Archdiocese of Chicago will join other churches in praying for unity during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, beginning on Saturday, Jan. 18, 2020. Begun in 1908, the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity is celebrated around the world each year between Jan. 18 and Jan. 25. Those eight days form an “octave” from the Confession of St. Peter to the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. This year’s theme is “They Showed Us Unusual Kindness.”

“In observing the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, Christians gather to pray for peace and unity to heal our fractured world,” said Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, archbishop of Chicago. “This year’s theme is based on the kindness St. Paul encountered from strangers after being shipwrecked on the island of Malta. Today, many are on similar, turbulent journeys. May our common love of Christ lead Christians to offer abundant kindness and hospitality to the world’s people.”

The Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity and the World Council of Churches annually select ecumenical leaders from various geographical regions to prepare the theme and text for the Week of Prayer. This year’s theme is taken from Acts 27:18 – 28:10 and was chosen by the Christian churches in Malta and Gozo for its message of hospitality, a much needed virtue in our search for unity by drawing divided people closer. Through congenial encounters with those who have different languages, cultures, or faiths, God’s will for the Church and all people is actualized.

“This annual observance is a valuable opportunity for all Christians. Now we recall our shared mission to proclaim God’s message of hope and love requires that we offer radical hospitality to all we meet,” said Very Rev. Thomas A. Baima, vicar for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs for the Archdiocese of Chicago. “This year’s theme reminds us that welcoming others with kindness is an essential component of our pursuit for Christian unity and a way to live out God’s call to serve those most in need.”

The following are local ecumenical prayer services commemorating the annual Week of Prayer for Christian Unity:

Sunday, Jan. 19, 10:30 a.m.

St. Nicolai United Church of Christ, 3000 N. Kedzie, Chicago

(Potluck luncheon will follow the service)

Thursday, Jan. 23, 7 p.m.

St. Mary Church, 1012 Lake St., Evanston, Ill.

Saturday, Jan. 25, 7 p.m.

St. Dorothy Church, 450 E. 78th St., Chicago

(Hospitality will follow the service)

Saturday, Jan. 25, 6:30 p.m.

St. Andrew United Methodist Church, 250 N. Gary Ave., Carol Stream, Ill.

(Hospitality will follow the service)

For more information, please visit or call 312.534.5325.