» 06/06/2007, 00.00
Melani Manel Perera
Marian shrine in Madhu to become ‘peace zone’
In a meeting with Catholic bishops, President Rajapakse accepts Church proposal to guarantee safety to pilgrims visiting the island nation’s most famous Marian shrine. Christians but also Buddhists and Hindus rejoice, hopeful that these words of peace will not remain an empty statement but turn instead into concrete actions.
04/02/2005 SRI LANKA
Mgr Gomis urges politicians to work for human rights and religious freedom
In his Independence Day message, the Archbishop of Colombo stresses how peace and solidarity are necessary to rebuild the country after the tsunami.
14/04/2008 SRI LANKA
Bishops’ Conference calls for an end to violence around the Madhu Shrine
In a press release sent to government and Tamil Tigers, the Catholic Church of Sri Lanka calls for an end to military operations around the sacred site. It wants the Marian shrine, a pilgrimage destination for the entire population, to be protected. Bishops back the decision to move the statue of Our lady of Madhu, dismissing claims it was under duress by the rebels.
11/01/2011 SRI LANKA
Mannar diocese offers proposal for genuine and lasting Tamil-Sinhalese reconciliation
Bishop Rayappu Joseph and two priests from his diocese submit a report to the Lessons Learnt and Reconciliation Commission (LLRC), calling for complete transparency on what happened between 2002 and 2009 as a step towards finding an effective and lasting solution to the ethnic conflict.
13/05/2008 SRI LANKA
Military to allow the return of the statue of Our Lady of Madhu
Sri Lanka’s army accepts bishop’s request to demilitarise a 2.5 area around the shrine. In a few weeks, after the area has been cleared of mines and the temple repaired, the statue will come back in time for the Feast of the Assumption, an important moment of unity for both Tamils and Sinhalese.
19/06/2007 SRI LANKA
Bishops’ solidarity with Tamils forced to leave Colombo
In a message published in two local Catholic papers, the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Sri Lanka expresses its solidarity with Tamils forced to leave abandon homes and livelihood. Bishops call for respect of the constitution’s human rights provisions.
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