25 July, 2014 AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook            

Help AsiaNews | About us | P.I.M.E. | | RssNewsletter | Mobile





mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato
e-mail this to a friend printable version


» 01/09/2012
PAKISTAN
Faisalabad celebrating 50 years of priesthood of Fr Bonnie Mendes
by Shafique Khokhar
Active in the field of human rights and interreligious dialogue, he is an example for all Catholics in Pakistan. He defines his mission "received as a precious gift from God." Over a thousand people at a Mass of thanksgiving. Bishop Coutts: how John the Baptist prepared the way for others.

Faisalabad (AsiaNews) - "Serving as a priest of the diocese of Faisalabad was given a precious gift from God." This is how Bonnie Mendes, priest and activist in Pakistan, celebrated 50 years of priesthood on 7 January in the city's cathedral, a church crowded with a thousand people, including priests, nuns, catechists, students, laymen and members of civil society . "The mission of my life - he added - is to work as much as possible for the redemption of the underprivileged and marginalized groups including women, children, low-paid workers and religious minorities." Catholics in Faisalabad (Punjab) welcomed him with flowers, throwing rose petals, songs of celebration and drum rolls. The local bishop, Mgr. Joseph Coutts, and activists Ayub Sadiq and Peter Jacob, executive secretary of the National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP) have praised the efforts of the priest in promoting interfaith dialogue, peace and human rights.

For the occasion, the organizers have shown a multimedia movie that retraced the life and mission of Fr Bonnie Mendes, in addition to his contribution to the faith and social fields. He was ordained priest on 7 January 1962 and obtained his doctorate on development in the Philippines. In 2005 he received a prestigious award for his contribution to peace and interfaith harmony and, even today, is regional coordinator of Caritas Asia and Executive Director of the Society for Human Development, an organization active in Pakistan since 1984.

Speaking of the work of Fr Mendes, the Bishop of Faisalabad Msgr. Coutts said that "he is like light, salt and yeast," and his every action in life is "in the light of the teachings of the Bible." Like John the Baptist, the prelate added, he has prepared the way for others in the service of humanity "small steps to promote human development." Fr. Emmanuel Yousaf Mani, NCJP national director, says that "following his example," the Catholic Church "can bring a positive change" to Pakistani society.

Fr. Khalid Rasheed, vicar general of the diocese of Faisalabad, included Fr. Mendes among those priests who "spread the faith like Aaron" and " lead the nation socially and politically like Moses." Fr. Aftab James Paul adds that "He in not only a religious and social leader, but a progressive reformer and visionary intellectual." Finally activist Sardar Sadaqat, for which Bonnie Mendes is not just a single individual, but also "an institution and statesman as well."

e-mail this to a friend printable version

See also
06/26/2008 PAKISTAN
Stop executions to honour Bhutto, Pakistani PM says
by Qaiser Felix
11/05/2009 PAKISTAN
Blasphemy legislation strikes minorities and Islamises the country, Pakistan priest says
01/07/2009 PAKISTAN
“Believers from every religion should build a world of peace,” says Pakistani bishop
by Qaiser Felix
02/27/2008 PAKISTAN
Islamic extremists arrested for the murder of seven Christians
by Qaiser Felix
06/22/2005 PAKISTAN
Justice and Peace in defence of farmers on the Indo-Pakistan border

Editor's choices
VATICAN
Pope: I am with the persecuted Christians of Mosul and the Middle East "May the God of peace inspire in all a genuine desire for dialogue and reconciliation. Violence is never defeated with violence. Violence is defeated with peace." At the Sunday Angelus Francis comments on the parable of the wheat and the weeds. God is "patient" He knows "the same weeds in the end, may become good wheat". But "at the time of the harvest, that is, of judgment, the reapers will execute the order of the master separating the weeds to be burned".
CHINA - VATICAN
Beijing, seminarians desert graduation ceremony: We will not celebrate Mass with illegitimate bishops The rector of the seminary is the illegitimate bishop Joseph Ma Yinglin: Students refuse to concelebrate with him and reject Msgr. Fang Xingyao, who has participated in several illegal episcopal ordinations. The directors close the year without awarding diplomas and send students home: rumors of some courses being "suspended" in September. The precedent of 2000, when 130 young students chose fidelity to the Pope over compromise with the government.
HONG KONG-CHINA-VATICAN
Card Zen: Religious freedom and civil liberties are united, for China and Hong Kong
by Bernardo CervelleraA wide ranging conversation with the bishop emeritus of Hong Kong: the courage of Msgr. Ma Daqin, who sent a message to Pope Francis; underground Catholics are also prepared to be arrested; suspicions about Beijing’s sincerity towards possible dialogue with the Holy See. And in Hong Kong, the march for a referendum on democracy; support for "Occupy Central"; the fear of the government and arrests. Card. Zen reaffirms that religious freedom and civil liberties go hand in hand.

Dossier
by Giulio Aleni / (a cura di) Gianni Criveller
pp. 176
by Lazzarotto Angelo S.
pp. 528
by Bernardo Cervellera
pp. 240
Copyright © 2003 AsiaNews C.F. 00889190153 All rights reserved. Content on this site is made available for personal, non-commercial use only. You may not reproduce, republish, sell or otherwise distribute the content or any modified or altered versions of it without the express written permission of the editor. Photos on AsiaNews.it are largely taken from the internet and thus considered to be in the public domain. Anyone contrary to their publication need only contact the editorial office which will immediately proceed to remove the photos.