10/08/2009, 00.00
SRI LANKA
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Army celebrates 60 years as bishop of Colombo calls for peace and harmony

by Melani Manel Perera
A special ceremony is held in Colombo’s Anglican cathedral. Representatives of various Christian denominations and top army officers pray together for peace and harmony in the country.
Colombo (AsiaNews) – Colombo’s Anglican Cathedral of Christ the Living Saviour held a special ceremony on Wednesday to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Sri Lankan army. Army Day is traditionally held 10 October.

Representatives of the Anglican, Methodist, Baptist and Catholic Churches prayed together with Shiranthi Rajapaksa, wife of Sri Lanka’s president, Army Chief Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya, and Chief of Defence Staff General Sarath Fonseka, the highest-ranking military officer in the Sri Lankan Armed Forces.

Mgr Malcolm Ranjith, archbishop of Colombo, led the Catholic delegation during the prayer, which was conducted in Sinhala, Tamil and English.

The prelate called on the Lord “to protect our country” and “bless all the leaders and our people to live in true harmony.”

Representatives of other Christian denominations added their voice to the moment.

On behalf of the Sri Lankan Army Christian Fellowship, Colonel Rodrigo called on God to “make us an effective instrument of your peace.”

During the celebrations, Mgr Ranjith blessed the flags of the various army corps (pictured) and reminded those present of the soldiers who died or were wounded during the long war between the military and the Tamil Tigers.

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