ASIA/PAKISTAN - Muslims pay homage to Our Lady of Mariamabad

Monday, 12 September 2016 dialogue   hinduism   islam   pilgrimages   religious minorities  


Lahore (Agenzia Fides) - "A large presence of Muslim faithful leaders and believers, are paying visit today, the feast of the Holy Name of Mary, to the National Shrine of Our Lady of Mariamabad, in the diocese of Lahore. A message of love, tolerance and harmony comes from Mary": refers to Agenzia Fides Fr. James Channan, Dominican in Lahore, at the helm of "Peace Center", committed in interreligious dialogue. The Archbishop of the city, Mgr. Sebastian Shaw, today on a visit to the shrine, welcomed Muslim pilgrims, and a large crowd of Pakistani Christians who are now living a day dedicated to Mary.
Organizations as well as individual Christian and Muslim benefactors are taking care of the food and refreshments for the pilgrims, who face long trips. Faithful of all religions (Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs), come to ask for a special grace to the Virgin, they arrive on foot or by bicycle, on a journey that can last several days. Near the shrine also medical devices for those suffering from dehydration, high blood pressure, injuries to the feet have been set up. About 400 thousand pilgrims are expected to reach the Sanctuary.
"The message written at the entrance of the shrine says that all religions teach peace and love" recalls Fr. Channan, indicating the meaning and significance of this interreligious pilgrimage. The sanctuary in Mariamabad, literally "Mary’s village", was built by the Belgian Capuchin in 1898 and is the most popular Marian sanctuary in Pakistan. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 12/09/2016)