12/10/2019, 12.27
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Catholic archbishop and nun awarded for "peace and human rights" in India

Msgr. Thomas Menamparamil, 83, is the emeritus of Guwahati, in Assam. Sr. Rose Tom is a gynecologist who has left a prominent place in a large Kerala hospital to serve the sick and the Church in Arunachal Pradesh. The prizes are for "the collaborators who work behind the scenes".

New Delhi (AsiaNews) - An archbishop and a Catholic nun have been rewarded for their contribution to peace and support for human rights in India. They are Msgr. Thomas Menamparamil, 83, emeritus of Guwahati, and Sr. Rose Tom, 67, of the Sacred Heart Congregation.

The prelate is a well-known peacekeeper in the north-east of the country, in particular among the ethnic groups of Assam; the nun is a gynecologist, originally from Kerala, who currently works to combat child mortality in Arunachal Pradesh.

The ceremony was held on December 9 at the India Islamic Center Auditorium in the capital. The awards were assigned by the International Human Rights Council. Msgr. Menamparampil received the title "Ambassador of Peace" and the nun the one for "International human rights".

At the award ceremony, the archbishop of Guwahati emphasized that "the secret of the success of any peace effort lies in the ability to listen". Then he added: "The Gospel is peace, reconciliation between communities and bringing people together. The joy resulting from a peace process is unparalleled. It is a joy that no one can take away ".

For its part, Sr. Rose said excitedly: "I am overwhelmed by this honor. The prize is for the hundreds of health workers like me who walk for days to reach the most remote villages of Arunachal Pradesh in order to take care of the sick".

The nun arrived in the Northeast State in 2015, at the invitation of Msgr. George Pallipparambil, bishop of Miao, to offer her skills in the service of the Krick and Bourry Memorial Hospital, in the village of Injan, the only hospital of the Catholic Church in the north-eastern state.

The doctor, the bishop says, "accepted to leave a prominent position as a healthcare superintendent in a large hospital in Kerala and moved. She has really become a blessing for people. More than medical care itself, she is making a fundamental contribution to raising awareness, because unfortunately many deaths are due to people's ignorance [in terms of personal hygiene and health] ".

With over 30 years of experience in maternal and neonatal care, Sr. Rose states that "the health service is still the most serious problem for the population". According to a recent study, the religious woman explains, in Arunachal Pradesh “the infant mortality rate is 36 deaths per 1,000 births, the highest since 2000 and one of the worst in the whole country. Through our mobile clinics and health workers operating in the villages, we do everything to educate and spread knowledge among people, in order to reduce mortality ". (A.C.F.)

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