03/17/2008, 00.00
QATAR

15 thousand attend first mass in Doha church

Dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary, the building is part of a complex for the use of various Christian denominations. Qatar’s deputy prime minister speaks of “a positive message for the entire world”, the nuncio hopes for the establishing of diplomatic relations with Saudi Arabia and Oman.

Doha (AsiaNews/Agencies) – 15 thousand attended the first “ordinary” mass celebrated in the church of Our Lady of the Rosary, in Doha on Saturday.  The mass was presided over by Cardinal Ivan Dias, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of peoples.  The day before the Cardinal had consecrated what is in effects, the first church in the Gulf State.

The faithful began arriving early morning, but the building, which has a capacity of 5 thousand, couldn’t contain them all: thousands were forced to follow the rite from outside.  Order was assured by the dozens of police who watched over participants, perhaps in fear of protests against the building of the church which had emerged in recent weeks, led by fundamentalist Muslim groups.  The rite was celebrated in English with prayer so the faithful in Arabic, Urdu, Hindi, Tagalong, Spanish and French, the predominant languages of those present.

The Church of Our Lady of the Rosary is the first of a group of Christian buildings which the Sultan has allowed: the Catholic Church will be followed by Anglican, Orthodox, Coptic and Indian buildings. “A positive message for the entire world”:  was how Qatari deputy Prime Minister Abdullah bin Hamad al-Attiyah defined Our Lady of the Rosary.

Similar considerations were made by the Apostolic Nuncio Msgr. Paul-Munjed al-Hashem, who also expressed his hope that diplomatic relations, may be established between Saudi Arabia and Oman, the only two Gulf nations without direct relations with the Holy See.

 

 

Printable version
CLOSE X
See also
For Fr Tom, abducted in Yemen, Holy Thursday prayer and adoration for the martyrs
21/03/2016 14:57
Pope talks about the Middle East, the Holy Land and the food crisis with Bush
13/06/2008
Kerala's Our Lady of Ransom becomes a National Pilgrim Centre
15/09/2004
A catacomb Church? Perhaps, but one that is alive and well . . . and universal
07/09/2004
In China the Church only wants to run its own affairs, says Mgr Lajolo
01/06/2006