This year’s star singing campaign can begin for around 85,000 boys and girls: Auxiliary Bishop Stephan Turnovszky, on behalf of the convalescent Archbishop of Vienna, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, received a “royal delegation” from the parish of Großebersdorf on Friday morning, officially opening the campaign, as Kathpress reports.
At lunchtime, around 150 star singers from all over Austria visited National Council President Wolfgang Sobotka (ÖVP). “The Epiphany campaign is not only a beautiful and dear tradition, but rather a living sign of charity and solidarity in our country,” said Sobotka, according to a broadcast. “In the Epiphany campaign I see visible evidence of civil society engagement in Austria.” Such initiatives are the cornerstone of a strong and grown democracy. “I thank the many young people for their commitment and dedication, which they are doing all year round,” said the President of the National Council.
A visit to Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen is on the program on December 30, and on New Year’s Day it is the turn of Federal Chancellor Brigitte Bierlein and Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg. On January 1, a star singing group from the parish of Ollersdorf in Burgenland will also take part in the New Year’s service with Pope Francis in St. Peter’s Basilica.
Auxiliary Bishop Turnovszky asked the people of Austria to “open the doors and hearts” to the Sternsinger in the next few days, because “the boys and girls do something good, bring blessings to every house and collect for social projects in the countries of the south”. Because there are many people who do not go to church, it is “all the more important that you go to them and bring them the good news”, said the youth bishop to the star singers.
From December 27th to January 6th, around 85,000 star singers from around 3,000 parishes will travel throughout Austria, collecting donations for around 500 projects in 19 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The main country this year is Kenya, where the donations are intended to improve the living conditions of children in slums.