12/27/2017, 18.09
BANGLADESH
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For a Christian convert, Christmas is a time of blessings

by Sumon Corraya

Peter Hasan, a former Muslim, was disowned by his family and denied his inheritance. His Muslim family would probably kill him if he ever went home. Before he was baptised he hated Christians and Hindus. Today he says “Christ is a source of love, forgiveness and mercy”.

Dhaka (AsiaNews) – "I think the birth of Jesus Christ is important because he came to earth as a man to save mankind. I welcomed Jesus Christ in my heart. During this period of Christmas, I receive peace and blessings," said Peter Hasan (not his real name).

A Muslim who converted to Christianity two years ago, Peter spoke to AsiaNews about his story. Noting that as a result of his conversion, his family disowned him, and would probably kill him, he is not unduly concerned because “even though I do not have the support of my family, I have the support of many new friends."

At present he lives in Dhaka with his Catholic wife whom he met after his baptism. He is also a "great devotee of the Virgin Mary" and recites the Rosary every evening in the company of his wife.

For the Christmas holidays, he has put on new clothes, cleaned up his home, and prepared himself spiritually for the birth of Jesus through prayers.

Peter learnt kirton (Christmas carols) and sings them with the Christians of the neighborhood where he lives. He goes to Mass every Sunday, as well as visits Christian friends and neighbours' houses.

He said that his life has been very different from what it was few years ago. Things changed one day when he found a copy of the Bible in a library and started reading it. In doing so, he found “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (Jn 14:6).

"The lifestyle, teachings and message of Jesus Christ touched my heart deeply. From that moment on I went looking for Christians." Before that "I had never seen a Christian,” he explained.

Eventually, he “went to a Catholic church in Dinajpur. There I met a young man who became my friend. Thanks to him I started going to church. Then one day I confessed to a priest that I wanted to become a Christian ".

After his baptism Peter was disowned by the family, opposed to his choice. He was no longer able to see his siblings and relatives and was denied his share of his father's inheritance. "If I go home, they’d kill me for of my religion," he bemoaned.

Despite everything, he is happy because Jesus Christ "has changed my life. Before I hated Christians and Hindus. I thought they were enemies of my religion. But through Jesus I understood that I was wrong. Christ is a source of love, forgiveness and mercy."

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