Guam Catholics pray for peace amid North Korean missile threats

Guam's Catholics date back to the 17th Century, making them one of the oldest Christian communities in the Western Pacific.

August 13, 2017 09:37
Virginia mourning

Local residents pray during a Sunday mass at Sta Barbara Church on the island of Guam, a US Pacific Territory, August 13, 2017.. (photo credit: ERIC DE CASTRO/ REUTERS)


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Catholics attending a Sunday mass in Guam prayed for peace amid missile threats from North Korea.

Pyongyang's state-run KCNA news agency said on Thursday (August 10) its army would complete plans in mid-August to fire four intermediate-range missiles over Japan to land near Guam.

An 11:00 AM local time (01:00 GMT) service at Saint Anthony's Cathedral was packed with worshipers, most of whom, like Elizabeth Cena, a local account, were there to pray for a smooth road ahead.

"Because we don't really know what's gonna happen, you know. If everything happens, then, you know, we just got to be ready, and we're always listening to the news and of course, the best one is again, pray, pray, and pray. That's the best thing," said Cena.

Monsignor James Benavente told churchgoers during his sermon to "not be afraid" of the recent threats and place their faith in Jesus.

Guam's Catholic population dates back to the 17th century during the Spanish colonial era and is one of the oldest in the Western Pacific.
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