ASIA/PAKISTAN - The Pakistani Church in communion with the people of Sri Lanka

Thursday, 2 May 2019 terrorism   solidarity   local churches  


Karachi (Agenzia Fides) - Hundreds of faithful in Karachi gathered in St. Patrick's Cathedral to offer their solidarity to the victims of the recent massacre in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday (see Fides 22/4/2019).
“We deeply feel the pain of the people of Sri Lanka; it is terrible that hate-filled human beings can commit such atrocities” said Cardinal Joseph Coutts, Archbishop of Karachi, during the Eucharistic celebration organized by the “Episcopal Commission for Justice and Peace” in Karachi. The Eucharist was celebrated in front of a large assembly composed of clergy, religious and faithful of the Archdiocese.
Addressing the assembly of the faithful, the Cardinal said: “Through our faith, our prayers and our hearts, we are in total communion with this wounded population”. “The Catholic Church in Pakistan - he recalled - has a close relationship with that in Sri Lanka: many missionaries, priests, brothers, nuns and lay people have lent and still provide pastoral service in Pakistan and are committed to the development of our country”.
The Cardinal also highlighted the zeal and dedication shown by Sri Lankan missionaries in Pakistan over the past sixty years. He said: “They played a very important role in the field of education, health care and the development of technical education institutions in Pakistan. They have also greatly contributed to the promotion of interfaith harmony in our country”.
Returning to the attacks, the Cardinal added: "It is one of the most inhuman attacks in the history of Sri Lanka, and we must stand by them at this time of mourning. We pray for the people of Sri Lanka, not only for Christians but for everybody and for peace and stability throughout the Sri Lanka”.
In memory of the dead of this carnage, during the Eucharistic celebration the Consul General of the Consulate of Sri Lanka (in Karachi) lit the first candle which was followed by that of the clergy, religious, nuns and laity. At the end of the mass the faithful of Karachi met the priests, nuns and laity of Sri Lanka serving in Pakistan to show their solidarity and to express sympathy.
In addition, the rector of St. Patrick's Cathedral, Fr. Mario Rodrigues, told Fides: “We were all shocked by the attacks in Sri Lanka. We pray for the people of Sri Lanka and for the maintenance of peace in the World”. (AG) (2/5/2019 Agenzia Fides)