04/20/2010, 00.00
SRI LANKA
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"Sri Lanka must develop a righteous nation and not only the economy "

by Melani Manel Perera
Resolute stance of the Archbishop of Colombo, at the inauguration of the chapel of a hospital dedicated to Divine Mercy. More than 2,500 faithful present.

Ragama (AsiaNews) - A crowd of 2,500 faithful, patient and medical staff attended the Mass for the inauguration of the Chapel of Divine Mercy at the renowned chest Hospital -Welisara Ragama, in the Diocese of Colombo, on April 18. Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo, celebrated  Mass along with the vicar general Father Marcus Fernando, and Fr. Sam Quintus from the parish of Saints Peter and Paul and the Director of Liturgy and Culture for the Diocese of Colombo Father Cicil Joy Perera.  

In his homily Archbishop Ranjith stressed that in today's society attention must be paid to inner life and religion and not just material satisfaction. He invited everyone to work together "to build a better country. We need not only a economically developed country but also country developed as a righteous country. "  

Father Anura Sri Kamal, chaplain for hospitals in the southern diocese of Colombo, said the chapel, on which construction work began on 1 October 2009, was built in a few months thanks to donations of about 30 million rupees (about 263 thousand Euros). Other donors bought pews, seats and other furnishings for the chapel.  

Hospital patients are overjoyed by the chapel. 80 year old Anthony Pesona, suffering from asthma, spoke to AsiaNews  describing his happiness to be able to "sit in the chapel and pray, instead of sitting all day in the hospital bed."  

Evening rains fell in the area of Welisara, but not in the hospital where the ceremony, which lasted approximately 3 hours, was undisturbed.  

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