The annual Peter’s Pence collection, which enables Pope Benedict XVI to respond with emergency financial assistance to those in need throughout the world, will take place Sept. 6-7 in the Archdiocese of Baltimore. The money helps those who suffer as a result of war, oppression and natural disasters, according to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Web site.
The theme for the 2008 collection is “Christ Our Hope.”
According to the bishops’ Web site, the collection “provides the faithful with a tangible opportunity to not only empower the weak, defenseless and voiceless, but also sustain those who suffer.”
The site says the collection began as a “pence,” or collection of pennies, in ninth-century England, when King Alfred the Great collected funds from English landowners as a financial support for the pope.
This year’s theme, according to the Web site, echoes that of the Holy Father’s apostolic journey to the U.S. last April and reflects the message of his encyclical letter “Spe Salvi: An invitation for people to encounter Jesus Christ personally.”