Karachi (Agenzia Fides) - The youth movement "Jesus Youth Pakistan" has launched the "Pray, Love, Fast for Peace" campaign which sees the participation of thousands of young people in Pakistan and in various parts of the world, in particular to pray for peace between India and Pakistan: The Gospel verse chosen for the campaign, which will last for the whole period of Lent, is "Love your neighbor as yourself" (Mt 22.39). Ayyaz Gulzar, Coordinator of "Jesus Youth Pakistan" tells Agenzia Fides : "Our task is to pray for peacekeeping, especially in this time of crisis. This is the moment to spread the message of peace according to the commandment given by Jesus in the Gospel, that is, to love God and to love our neighbor".
"War is never a good solution. If there were a new war between India and Pakistan, it would be destructive, which will not only affect the two countries but all of Asia", notes Fr. Mario Rodrigues, Rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Karachi and in charge of the Youth Pastoral in the Archdiocese of Karachi, while the tension between India and Pakistan remains high.
Fr. Mario Rodrigues notes: "The leaders of India and Pakistan must think and act wisely, working for the good and the prosperity of their respective peoples, instead of bringing them to live in fear and terror. In both countries there is an increase in poverty and people who live below the poverty line: these are the priorities to be addressed". The Rector notes: "India and Pakistan have nuclear weapons, and if they were used, their effect will be visible in the next centuries. We need to avoid a conflict at all costs. We must pray and fast for peace. Let us celebrate a Sunday Mass for peace and encourage all the faithful to fast for this cause, at the beginning of Lent".
In recent days, two Indian aircraft were shot down in Pakistani territory and an Indian pilot captured. The Indian military prisoner was released on March 2 by the Government of Pakistan. Fr. Qaisar Feroz OFM Cap, Executive Secretary of the Commission for Social Communications in the Pakistani Bishops Conference, speaking to Fides, said: "The release of the Indian pilot is a sign of good will, indicating that Pakistan wants peace. It is never easy to release a soldier who has entered your territory to attack. We appreciate the gesture of the pakistani government. We always support those who take initiatives for peace in the world". (AG) (Agenzia Fides, 4/3/2019)