Caritas of the Archdiocese of Prague has recently taken over the responsibility for the operation of the Church of the Virgin Mary, Mother of Perpetual Help and St. Cajetan, located at Nerudova Street 22 in Prague’s borough of Lesser Town, a five-minute walk from the Prague Castle. Hence, Caritas is now in charge of a facility that adds a spiritual dimension to the charitable activities of the Archdiocese of Prague.
„We are opening a new chapter in the history of the Archdiocese of Prague. The endeavours we undertake are not only human, but more importantly, God’s,“ explained upon the handover of the church Rector P. Stanislav Přibyl, Secretary General of Czech Bishops‘ Conference and a member of the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer, the owner of the church who has entrusted the Prague Caritas Branch with overseeing its operation starting at the beginning of August. „Since people need God’s help to guide them in their lives, I am convinced that the church is a necessity for Caritas, and can in no way be perceived as a matter of luxury. I wish Caritas workers to be met here with God’s helping hand that will give them the strength to effectively assist others in the troubled world of ours and to represent Jesus, the Son of God.“
Social and Spiritual Dimensions of Caritas
Clients, donors, and workers of Caritas of the Archdiocese of Prague will regularly meet in the church on various occasions, both ordinary and extraordinary. „Our work has both a social dimension and a spiritual dimension,“ revealed Jaroslav Němec, Director of Caritas of the Archdiocese of Prague. „On the one hand, we are a professional provider of social services. At the same time, we are a community of people who wish to pray together for their work, to seek God’s blessings for the people we care for, to celebrate Holy Masses for deceased clients, to commemorate the anniversaries of the saints who act as patrons for our projects, to meet with donors who value highly the Christian dimension of Caritas, to congregate as part of spiritual rehabilitation, and much more.“
Caritas has opened the church to the public. The Holy Mass is celebrated at the Church of the Virgin Mary, Mother of Perpetual Help and St. Cajetan at 5:00 p.m. every Tuesday. The church is open for private prayer from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. every day except Monday.
Caritas of the Archdiocese of Prague will cover the cost of running the church using donations bestowed by donors who support the spiritual dimension of Caritas by contributing to its operating costs.
House of Prayer Helping People in Need
The Church of the Virgin Mary, Mother of Perpetual Help and St. Cajetan is the only church in the Czech Republic run by a professional provider of social services – Caritas of the Archdiocese of Prague. Caritas is an organization with a century-long history, established by the Archdiocese of Prague to provide help both in the Czech Republic and in other countries. Thus, our church serves the double purpose of being a house of prayer and at the same time a safe haven helping people in need.