20 October 2017
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  •    - Afghanistan
  •    - Bangladesh
  •    - Bhutan
  •    - India
  •    - Nepal
  •    - Pakistan
  •    - Sri Lanka
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia


  • » 10/07/2013, 00.00

    NEPAL

    Young Nepali Hindus becoming Catholic to stop discrimination

    Kalpit Parajuli

    More and more children and teenagers are converting to Catholicism "tired" of inequality and abuses by Hindus on the lower castes and the poor. Twenty young people attend catechism at Kathmandu's Assumption Cathedral. "I want to become Catholic to spread the message of God's equality," said 12-year-old Diko.

    Kathmandu (AsiaNews) - In Nepal, many young Hindus and Buddhists are choosing to become Catholic because of deep-seated inequality and discrimination. "I saw with my own eyes whole groups prohibited from entering Hindu temples just because they were from the lower castes," Diko Tamang, 12, told AsiaNew. "These people could not offer prayers; it is an unforgivable discrimination." From a Hindu family, Diko attends catechism at Kathmandu's Assumption Cathedral, along with a group of some 20 boys and girls.

    "In my opinion," he said, "there should be no discrimination of any kind in a religion. In Christianity, there are none. In all castes and ethnic groups, each person is treated the same way. This is what I like and what inspired me to become Catholic. When I grow up I want to be able to spread the message of God's equality in our society."

    Rita Maharjan, 18, also goes catechism with Diko. "I came here," she told AsiaNews, at the invitation of my sister, who is Catholic. For a long time, she had serious health problems, paralysed in the legs, unable to walk. We spent a lot of money to treat her. One day one of her friends encouraged her to go to church and be blessed by the priest. She did, and a few weeks later she was healed. When I tell this, a lot of people do not believe me, but it is true and I can testify to God's power and grace on my sister. I want to become Catholic, tell people about my experience and feel the grace of the Lord."

    Nepal is home to about 150,000 Christians, including 8,000 Catholics. Before the fall of the monarchy (2006), Hinduism was the state religion, affecting the lives of every citizen. Following the proclamation of a secular state, religious freedom was guaranteed; yet minorities, especially Christians, are still subjected to harassment and threats from the majority community.

    Hindus are often involved in discrimination, violence against women and marginalisation of the poor. In turn, they, and sometimes Buddhists, accuse Catholics and other Christians of converting people by force or by offering them money.

    The kids attending catechism disagree. "When we came to the church no one asked us to convert. No one attempted to bribe us with something. We were interested and asked the priest to convert us, but he refused. He told us to ask our parents for permission and to study well what Christianity is."

    From his first lessons, Diko remembers "people who studied the doctrine's teachings for over two years to become Catholic. To be Christian and ask for baptism we have to study."

    Nepal's non-Christian population is steadily increasing. At the same time, the Catholic community is also steadily growing. This, experts say, depends on a long-term process that allows converts not to stray from their chosen course.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also

    04/04/2017 14:17:00 NEPAL
    On the eve of conversion, some Brahmins explain how they met “the true God only in the Catholic faith"

    As they prepare for baptism on Easter night, they tell their stories. More and more people are interested in Christianity since Nepal became a secular state.



    11/09/2017 14:28:00 NEPAL
    Nepal’s new criminal code punishes all religious conversions

    Parliament approved the legislation, which will come into effect in August 2018. Anyone caught proselytising risks up to five years in prison. Those who hurts others’ religious sentiment can be fined and get up to two years of prison. Minority religious leaders slam the new provision as a restriction on freedom of belief.



    29/06/2013 NEPAL
    Drug addiction reaches crisis levels in Nepal with Hindus the most affected
    Almost a third of young people is taking drugs; an increase of 3 per cent compared to ten years ago. According to psychologists, weak educational institutions and unstable families are some of the causes of the problem.

    15/02/2011 NEPAL
    Nepali Christians celebrate Saint Valentine’s Day helping the poor and handing out Bibles
    The unplanned action provided an opportunity to show non-Christians God’s love. It brought together Protestants and Catholics from various Kathmandu’s parishes, and was appreciated by Hindus. For Komal Oli, a Hindu singer, “When you have faith in God, he teaches you to love the whole of humanity and this is present in all religions”.

    30/09/2009 NEPAL
    A Protestant church collapses: 25 dead. Catholics and Hindus in aid of victims
    The roof collapsed overnight while people slept in the building. Over 100 injured. Isu Jung Karki, president of the Nepal Christian Forum: "Our first concern is to rescue the wounded and treat them. Discussions on the causes of the incident will follow”.



    Editor's choices

    MYANMAR
    Rohingya not only group persecuted in Myanmar, Christian minorities are as well



    Ethnic Kachin, Chin and Naga endure suffering. Religious discrimination is in some cases even institutionalised. Christians are seen as the expression of a foreign religion, outside of the nationalist view. For years the military regime has applied stringent discriminatory measures.


    VATICAN - ASIA
    The world is in urgent need of the Church's mission

    Bernardo Cervellera

    October is a month devoted to awakening the call to mission among Christians. In the world there is indifference or enmity towards God and the Church. Religions are considered the source of all wars. Christianity is the encounter with a Person who changes the life of the believer and places him at the service of the wounds of the world, torn by frustrations and fratricidal wars. The example of the Patriarch of Baghdad and of the President of South Korea.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®