Bishop in Madhya Pradesh: Christians living the Passion of Christ
by Nirmala Carvalho

Abp. Leo Cornelio of Bhopal celebrated Palm Sunday Mass in the parish church of Lourdes Mata. Christians suffer criticism, aggression, contempt and false testimony, just like Jesus.

Mumbai (AsiaNews) - Archbishop Leo Cornelio of Bhopal, in Madhya Pradesh, celebrated Palm Sunday in the parish church of Lourdes Mata. In his homily he spoke about the Christian mission but also about the numerous attacks against the religious minority that took place in recent months.

He told AsiaNews: "In my homily at the Blessings of the palms and also during the Eucharistic Celebration, I spoke about the "Paradox of Life", the pains and sorrows, sufferings and joys are part of our journey in Life. Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem and the people shouted 'Hossana' and this soon turned into Crucify Him".

The passion of Christ, he adds, is the same condition that Christians live in the central Indian state. "Similarly too, in our Christian mission and apostolate , criticism and harassment together with appreciation for our healthcare and educational apostolate go together....With this 'Paradox of Life', we bear witness in MadhyaPradesh".

Monsignor Cornelio refers to the attacks against Christians that took place in Satna, during the Christmas period, when a group of singers was attacked; in Ratlam, near Vidisha, where Hindu radicals wanted to impose the cult of "Mother India" in a Catholic school; finally in Ujjain, where a Catholic hospital was attacked over a land dispute. After the latter incident, reports the bishop, “I personally visited Ujjain and saw personally what happened. I met and spoke to our Religious, at Jerusalem, where Jesus was greeted with Hosannas, was the same Jerusalem, where He was mocked, scorned and false witnesses testified against Him".