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Catholic nationwide prayer on Aug 23
Published on 22 Aug. 2009 1:10 AM IST
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Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI) secretary general Archbishop Stanislaus Fernandes has appealed to all the Catholic dioceses in the country to pray for peace and harmony and a spirit of reconciliation on August 23. In a statement, CBCI spokesperson Rev. Dr. Babu Joseph said this appeal was made in a special context to what had happened to Christians in Orissa after the alleged murder of Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati in Kandhamal in Orissa on August 23, 2008. The Archbishop Stanislaus has urged the Christian community to adhere to the Christian principle of forgiveness and move forward so as to build a strong and integrated civil society. All Catholics have been requested to fast on that day as a sign of solidarity with the suffering “brothers and sisters” of Orissa and also to generously contribute towards the re-building of their destroyed houses and institutions. Meanwhile, the Indo Global Social Service Society (IGSSS) based in New Delhi has initiated a campaign to collect signatures to attach to a memorandum that will be presented to the President of India on August 23, the CBCI statement asserted. The memorandum to the President of India will highlight the plight of the Christians in the country especially in Orissa where they were victims of communal violence.It may be mentioned that about fifty thousand people of Kandhamal belonging to Christian and Hindu dalits and tribals were affected by the communal violence that raged for months together.

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