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The color Red is synonymous for Love, especially as we celebrate the Feast of Saint Valentine in February.

For the Pontifical Mission Societies, Red in the World Mission Rosary symbolizes the Fire of Faith that brought the first Missionaries to the Americas.  This Rosary was developed by Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen, the National Director of the Societies at the time.

Missionaries have brought the “Good News” and “Good Works” of Jesus to the Americas, like to the Vila Alianca Slums are part of the city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, the largest country in South America. People there live on the margins of society with very little access to education or health care. Father Andrade, one of the local priests at the Infant Jesus of Prague Parish, fights for the rights of his communities’ people.  He works to educate the children of the slum and has an outreach program for families who are in the most desperate need.

One of those families includes a little boy named Daniel, who lives with his parents, his seven brothers and two sisters. His mother does not work because some of Daniel’s little brothers and sisters still need her at home. His father works only occasionally, when he can find an odd job or two.

Daniel is lucky enough to go to a local school, but does not receive a meal there. He is often hungry and sick. Luckily for Daniel, Father Andrade told the family that his parishioners would be able to deliver a weekly food basket containing black beans, rice, sugar, salt and corn powder, thanks to funds from the Missionary Childhood Association.  Father Andrade writes, “Thank you dear people for helping me to care for the little ones in my parish!”

The local parish’s faith formation is an essential part of the children’s lives. Recently, Father was able to prepare 120 children for the First Holy Communion. He says, “It was a great effort of the parish to make sure they were all dressed in the traditional white clothes.  Many families are so poor that they do not own ‘good clothes’. Many in my parish supplied the shirts and dresses and the children looked wonderful.  Thanks to Missionary Childhood Association we are able to regularly bring the children here every Sunday to learn about their faith and to learn how to read and write. It is so important. You cannot stand up for yourself if you cannot read. So thanks for your support. God bless you all.”

With every prayer and every sacrifice, members of the Missionary Childhood Association worldwide are making a difference for their brothers and sisters in Christ!