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Lithuania: hundredth anniversary, civil and religious celebrations. Mass by Archbishop Grusas in Vilnius

Merry bells will ring all over Lithuania tomorrow, 16 February, at 12:30pm, to celebrate the hundredth anniversary of restoration of the State of Lithuania; “Masses for homeland” will be celebrated, including the one at the Basilica of Saints Stanislaus and Ladislaus Vilnius, presided over by Archbishop Gintaras Grusas. For this special occasion, Lithuanian bishops suspended the Lent meat-free obligation on the first Friday of Lent, in order “to celebrate independence together, with joy”. These are civil and religious days of celebration in this Baltic Republic; yesterday, President Dalia Grybauskaitė presided over the ceremony of handing flowers to the families of the 20 men signing the Independence Act of Lithuania one hundred years ago, and opened the exhibition, “Unforgettable Futures: Visions for Lithuanian Centenary”. This morning, she awarded 100 persons with state decorations for their “merits to Lithuania”. In the evening, President of the European Council Donald Tusk and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker will also be in Vilnius, together with heads of state and government of bordering countries; tomorrow, they will be in Daukantas Square at 12:00pm, where the ceremony of hoisting the flags of the three Baltic States will be held. Then, the President will take part in the Mass in the Cathedral. In the evening: fireworks and concerts.

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