A cardinal in Austria led a memorial service for World AIDS Day at his archdiocesan cathedral, the first such event there and one which will hopefully be replicated there and elsewhere in future years.
Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna co-led an ecumenical service on December 1st with Gery Keszler, identified by La Croix as “a founder in 1992 of the ‘Life Ball’ charity gala and one of the first persons in Austria to admit contracting the HIV virus.”
The service included a candlelit procession through Vienna which ended at St. Stephan’s Cathedral, along with a reflection by Schönborn, a performance of Mozart’s “Requiem,” and a prayer read by drag queen Conchita Wurst.
The cardinal said the service was “to pray for those who have died of AIDS, to comfort the bereaved and to ask God to give those suffering from AIDS strength.” He added that compassion which is so needed today “is the gift to take a closer look and show a willingness to learn.”
More: New Ways Ministry