Okara (Agenzia Fides) - "A house of prayer, a place of worship where one can connect with God and where other activities that are not prayer and spiritual are not allowed" declared Mgr. Indrias Rehmat, Bishop of Faisalabad, on the occasion of the consecration of the first diocesan church dedicated to Saint Camillus, in the village called "Chak 49" in the area of Okara, a city in the province of Punjab.
"The Camillian dream of a church dedicated to the Patron of the Sick began in 2001 with the arrival of Fr. Rino Metrini, MI, in Pakistan. Since then, small seeds of Camillian faith have been sown almost everywhere. One of these seeds fell on fertile ground in Chak 49, Okara", wrote Fr. Mushtaq Anjum, MI, first Pakistani Camillian priest, to Fides.
The Camillian recounts that the entire community and the parish priest, Fr. Khalid Mukhtar, wanted a shrine. "On September 16, 2018, another Camillian missionary, Fr. Luigi Galvani, laid the first foundation stone of the church of Saint Camillus. With me were present, among others, the late Father Amato Aldino, OP, Father Khalid Mukhtar, FTL, some sisters of the Holy Family and a large number of faithful. In recent years, thanks to the contribution of many local and international benefactors, the Church consecrated to St. Camillus was completed and, on the eve of the feast of the Nativity of Mary, last September 7, in the presence of a large number of representatives of the clergy, religious and faithful, Bishop Rehmat blessed and consecrated the first church in Pakistan dedicated to the patron Saint of the Sick. On this same occasion, Mgr. Rehmat also gave the sacrament of Confirmation to more than a hundred young people". (MA/AP) (Agenzia Fides, 13/9/2021)