The Church in Kuwait marks on Friday the 75th anniversary of the first Catholic built in the Gulf country dedicated to the Mother of God Mary.
By Vatican News
The Catholic community in Kuwait is about to conclude the year-long celebrations of the 75th Jubilee of the Church of Our Lady of Arabia, the first Catholic church to be built on Kuwaiti soil , and the “mother church” of the Apostolic Vicariate of Northern Arabia, which also includes Bahrain, Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
The Diamond Jubilee celebrations kicked off on December 11, 2022, and will end on Friday, 8 December, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, with a solem Liturgy presided by Bishop Aldo Berardi, the Apostolic Vicar of the Vicariate.
The liturgy will be concelebrated by the Apostolic Nuncio of Kuwait, Archbishop Eugene Martin Nugent, the Custos of Arabia, Father Michael Fernandes OFM, along with all the priests ministering in Kuwait. Attending will be also representatives of Qatar and Bahrain.
Low-key celebrations because of war in Holy Land
Bishop Aldo Berardi told Fides Agency that all other celebrations planned for this event have canceled by the government out of solidarity with the Palestinian people suffering the war in Gaza.
The Church of Our Lady of Arabia was originally located in an old power plant in al-Ahmadi which had been transformed into a small chapel dedicated to the Mother of God in 1948.
Then, in 1952, the Kuwait Oil Company granted permission to build a new church in the city, and on 8 September 1955 the first foundation stone blessed by Pope Pius XII was laid.
The new church was consecrated to Our Lady of Arabia in April 1956.
Holy See-Kuwait diplomatic relations
Kuwait was the first member of the Gulf Cooperation Council to establish diplomatic relations with the Holy See 1968. However, the Apostolic Nunciature was established in the country only in 2000 was to strengthen ties, and promote interreligious dialogue