Bishop of Orissa asks the intercession of the future saint to bring peace and reconciliation. On September 4, the day when the Mother will be canonised celebrations, festivities and meetings will be held in India.
Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar (AsiaNews) - Msgr. John Barwa, Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar, Orissa State, has invited all the Christian victims of persecution carried out in 2008 in the Kandhamal district to pray to Mother Teresa, who will be canonized by Pope Francis in Rome next September 4.
The bishop told AsiaNews: "I invite all the Christians of Kandhamal to ask the intercession of Mother Teresa for peace and prosperity in the district, where anti-Christian massacres took place in 2007 and 2008, the fiercest in 300 years of history in India. "
Msgr. Barwa, president of the Regional Council of the Orissa Bishops (Obrc), adds: "It is a great blessing that God is going to give us a new saint in the person of Mother Teresa."
According to the bishop, the Blessed of Calcutta, founder of the Missionaries of Charity, is a model of peace and service. "We need people like Mother, - he says - who work for peace in places affected by conflict, such as the Kandhamal region".
The archbishop picked up the baton from his predecessor, the late Msgr. Raphael Cheenath, a staunch defender of the Christian victims of the pogroms committed by Hindu radicals. On August 30 last year, the day was celebrated the first "Martyrs Day" in Kandhamal, the bishop spoke with some survivors and encouraged them.
Fr. Anil Kumar Kujur, regional secretary for ecumenical and interreligious dialogue, says that on September 4, ecumenical programs will be held in many parts of Orissa, as well as meetings and activities to coincide with the canonization of Mother Teresa.
He concludes, that three bishops - Msgr. Sarat Chandra Nayak of Berhampur diocese, Msgr. Aplinar Senapati, the Diocese of Rayagada, and Msgr. Niranjan Sualsingh, Sambalpur - two Missionaries of Charity and several other Christians will be in St Peter’s representing the Church of Orissa.