The “National Congress on Mercy”, one of the main events of the Catholic Jubilee Year in Lithuania, is starting in Vilnius today. The event, which was called for by the Bishops of the country to “strengthen our relationship with Christ, discuss the mystery of God’s mercy together, bear public witness to the faith, and share the joy of belonging to Jesus Christ”, features moments of faith and debate. The programme includes an opening Mass at Vilnius Cathedral in the afternoon; the recitation of the Divine Mercy Chaplet in the main square, followed by an opportunity for participants to receive the sacrament of Reconciliation; and morning and evening prayers in several churches of the city. The themes of the public gatherings are: marriage, divorce and mercy; is a multicultural society a sign of Divine Mercy?; a Christian society in Lithuania: mission impossible?; and mercy as a response to the cultural ordeal of the Soviet domination. The programme also includes cultural and artistic events. A pilgrimage across the streets of Vilnius will take the participants to the closing event of the Congress: the Solemn Mass in the Cathedral. Delivering the homily will be Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, Papal Legate for this event. Besides meeting with the highest representatives of the State, the Cardinal will also report on the diplomatic activities of the Holy See for peace on Monday, 9 May.