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  • » 08/04/2007, 00.00


    A new edition of the Bible in Urdu

    Qaiser Felix

    The text, in an improved user-friendly version, was introduced across the country in a series of religious events. The Church in Pakistan celebrated the publication, inviting the faithful to “welcome the Word of God, into their hearts and homes”.

    Faisalabad (AsiaNews) – July 29th last, during a solemn mass celebrated by Msgr. Joseph Coutts, bishop of Faisalabad, the first ever computer printed edition of the Catholic Bible in Urdu was presented.  It was reviewed by the Catholic Bible Commission, whereas printing, composing and publishing was done with the cooperation of Pakistan Bible Society. In Faisalabad, as in all of the Churches, the bible’s publication was accompanied by a mass and solemn procession, complete with incense and prayers.   

    Msgr. Coutts invited the faithful to “witness God’s words in their daily lives, welcoming them into their homes and hearts”.  Fr. Aftab James Paul – a member of the revising commission – during his homily explained - “There is no change in the main manuscript of the Bible, we just changed the difficult words with easy to understand words so every one can easily understand the living word of God”. Moreover, he invited the faithful to “keep a copy of the bible in their homes, to show with strength their belonging to the Christian Community”.

    Even the Archbishop of Karachi, Mgrs. Evarist Pinto, in a message to the faithful of his diocese said “with gratitude and joy we welcome the 9th Edition of the Urdu Catholic Bible.  It is indeed a significant event in the history of the local Church in Pakistan” and which saw “the generous co-operation of the Pakistan Bible Society, in the future also there are plans to work together in the field of the Bible Apostolate and Bible promotion.  There is need for a fresh edition of the Bible because of the development of the language with new vocabulary, phrases and idioms.   But the Word of God does not change.  It remains firm for ever”.

    The need to change the old and difficult words of Arabic and Persian as well as the extinct words of Urdu, in the previous Urdu edition of the Bible was first mentioned about 25 years ago but the real work only started in April 2002 when the Catholic Bible Commission of Pakistan was formed under the chairmanship of Archbishop Evarist Pinto of Karachi and Fr Emmanuel Asi, a well known Bible scholar.  The new edition is a slimmer version – 1455 pages compared to the 1665 of the older edition – and is enriched by 5 colour maps.

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    See also

    26/05/2008 PAKISTAN
    Pakistan Church inaugurates Year of the Bible, challenge for all the faithful
    The occasion of the initiative is the Jubilee of the first translation of the sacred text into Urdu. The bishops call upon parishes to create biblical courses and seminars, and ask priests to pay "special attention" to their homilies.

    25/02/2011 PAKISTAN
    Provincial govt to review programmes in Islamic religious schools
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    02/12/2008 PAKISTAN
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    Armed conflict, fires and destruction between the Urdu majority and the Pashtun minority. The police have been ordered to shoot the agitators on sight, and say that today there is less fighting. It is a rift that goes back for decades, because of ethnic and economic reasons.

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    03/08/2010 PAKISTAN
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    The Assassination of Haider Raza, a member of the ruling coalition, provoked the reaction of his supporters and accusations against a rival party. But it seems ethnic rather than political violence involving the Pashtun and Shia community. Police blame the attack on a group that has ties to al-Qaeda.

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