World Mission Sunday takes place on the second last Sunday of October each year. Since 1926, the Church has traditionally remembered its universal mission during the month of October. This year Mission Sunday will be celebrated globally on the 22nd October 2017. The theme is ‘Reach Out, Spread the Joy.’ Throughout the world the faithful will reflect on the universal call to Mission of all the baptised. They will be invited to contribute what they can to support the development and growth of young churches internationally. Mission Sunday is celebrated by every Church worldwide, including the poorest. This special Sunday in October provides Catholics with the opportunity to unite with their missionary sisters and brothers overseas, and to recommit themselves to bringing the Joy of the Gospel to everyone they meet in their daily lives at home and at work.
In October and especially on Mission Sunday Catholics are invited to be specifically conscious of the Church’s missionary activity abroad (Ad Gentes) through prayer, sacrifice and financial contributions. The funds collected are used to assist Churches who need financial support and directed towards communities in need, both spiritually and materially.
In October 2016, Irish Catholics contributed more than €1.5 million on Mission Sunday. The Mission Sunday collection is made available to be distributed to as many as 1,100 young Churches who are supported by the generosity of Churches that have been blessed with a greater quantity of financial and material gifts.
Contributions will be used to build simple mission churches, to educate and nurture our future leaders of the Church including seminarians, religious novices, lay catechists and pastoral workers. The Mission Sunday gift may also be used for building health facilities for children and adults as well as for providing emergency aid in times of war or natural disaster or to assist missionaries in their efforts to care for refugees.
On Mission Sunday, in a special way, we celebrate the work of circa 1,300 Irish born missionaries and all missionaries throughout the world. We thank God for them, for all who support them in our own country and during mission month we unite ourselves in prayer with them and with the communities with whom they work.