With deep sorrow the world has witnessed the massacre of the innocents in Sri Lanka where both the Churches and Luxury hotels are attacked in 8 serial blasts. More than 290 of our brethren are reported to have died and many more are in critical condition in the hospitals. It is really hurting us deeply that the people at worship on the Easter Sunday are killed and maimed.

We have no words to explain such evil acts; it is beyond understanding how people could plan such a ghastly deed without having any qualms of conscience. Only faith would help to tide over the situation and see through the eyes of God, and believe that God alone can bring good even out of human wickedness. Let us pray that the perpetrators of violence may repent of their misdeeds and change their lives. Let the Lord who forgave those who crucified him be our model to take up the path of forgiveness and peace.

Let us rise up to the occasion to fill in new zeal for life and fight against the forces of evil and death through prayerful solidarity with the people of Sri Lanka by organizing candle light processions and prayer services. Let us invite people of good will to join us in prayer and support our brethren in grief. Some of the families from Karnataka also are affected by the blasts. Let us unite with those who mourn and console the grieving.

On behalf of our diocese, we shall be praying for the victims of Sri Lanka at Milagres Grounds at 7.00 p.m. on 23rd April after the Mass and Novena of St Antony. Please pass on the message to your friends and acquaintances about this Candle Light Prayer Service. Similarly, we shall hold one more prayer service at Moodbidri Town Church Hall after the Krishi Sanghatan Programme on 23rd April.

The Parish Priests in the diocese may choose any day in the week or even coming Sunday to pray for the victims of Sri Lanka. May Jesus, who was himself victim of violence reward the victims of this tragedy and share with them his victory over darkness and death in his resurrection.

Most Rev. Dr Peter Paul Saldanha,
Bishop of Mangalore Diocese

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