05/02/2015, 00.00
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Religions united for earthquake victims: We are all brothers and sisters

by Christopher Sharma
After the appeal launched by the Apostolic Vicar, the charitable organizations of various denominations decide to unite - under the leadership of Caritas - for rescue operations. Protestant Bishop: “Our prayers are accompanied by aid, we need international support." Imam Kathmandu: "We are delighted to be guided by the Catholics in these operations."

Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - One week after the devastating earthquake that rocked Nepal, religious charitable organizations in the country have decided to unite under the leadership of Caritas to launch a joint operation to help survivors. The official death toll has exceeded 6,600 people so far, and according to the authorities "we can no longer expect to find survivors under the rubble."

However, the population is still in a state of panic. The government itself has admitted to not having the means and preparation to respond to an emergency of this kind, and the displaced are still sleeping in the open for fear of further building collapses. Medicines, food, drinking water and even clean clothes are lacking. Given this situation, the Apostolic Vicar of Nepal Msgr. Paul Simick proposed to other religions to unite "to be more effective."

Officials of the local Caritas will lead the operation, supported by Caritas India and Australia. At the moment, dozens of religious NGOs have responded positively to the appeal. According to Bishop Narayan Sharma, the faithful of the Church (Protestant), " prayers are not enough to heal an open wound and do not feed those who live outdoors. Prayer is fundamental, but it is important also to serve those in need. We still need international support. "

Mohammad Sannaulha, imam of Jame mosque in Kathmandu, told AsiaNews: "Those who are suffering today are our brothers and sisters in Nepal, their religion does not matter. It should not divide us, we must indeed be united as much as possible to make our aid more effective. We are happy that the Catholics lead this, because they were the first to respond after the disaster. "

The Venerable Renchen, representative of the Buddhist community, and Manohar Prasad Sah of the Hindu community conclude: "We are doing our best, and when religions come together they can meet the basic needs of the people. Solidarity, peace and charity are concepts shared by all".


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