Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Catholics to Close Schools to Protest Orissa Violence

Catholics to close schools to protest Orissa violence

August 26, 2008
NEW DELHI (ICNS): Catholic Bishops' Conference of India said on Tuesday that all Catholic education institutions across India would close on Aug. 29 to protest continuing violence against Christians in Orissa state.

The Church will also observe Sept. 7 as a day of prayer and fasting for Christians in the eastern Indian state, the CBCI announced at a press conference in New Delhi on Aug. 26.

Cardinal Varkey Vithayathil of Ernakulam-Angamaly, CBCI president, has appealed to all Catholic groups to organize "peaceful rallies across the country to register strong protest against the repeated attacks" on Christians.

Reports say anti-Christian violence continues in Orissa, with at least five people killed in the latest attacks. Armed men continue to ransack and torch churches, presbyteries, convents and Christian health-care centers and hostels in the state.

Hindu radical violence against Christians began on Sunday after a Hindu religious leader, Swami Laxmanananda Saraswati, and five of his associates were killed on Aug. 23 in the state's Kandhamal district.

Maoists reportedly claimed responsibility for the killings, but some Hindu groups have alleged Christians masterminded the killing, a charge all Christian Churches and denominations have denied.

Source: ICNS

No comments: