LAHORE: Our Christian Unity should have the tangible expression in our day today life besides the worship says a Pakistani priest.
Father Inayat Bernard while talking to an assembly of around 200 at the Sacred Heart Cathedral in an inaugural prayer service said: our Christian unity should have the tangible expression in our day today life besides the worship, seminars or gatherings. Church of Pakistan Bishop Manu Romal Shah also addressed the gathering saying: in the recent months I have gone to Istanbul, Turkey and wanted to see the Orthodox Patriarch and was surprised that even the tourist did not know the place of the Patriarch. It was in Ephesus in Turkey where Mother Mary and John the Apostle were residing in the first century. The Christianity has shrunk there. Whatever freedom of religion we have in Pakistan is important that we make our unity tangible.
He said: as compared to the world, the ecumenical movement is active in South Asia especially the countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. As a retired Bishop of Peshawar I went there to support the affected people in the 22nd September, 2013 two blasts in All Saints Church compound killing over 200 worshipers. The Christians around the country showed their solidarity towards them and helped through the visits, prayers and financial support. We do not need to meet together only in tragedies and difficulties but in the times of peace as well.
Col Washington Daniel- Chief secretary of the Salvation Army while quoting from Psalm 133 said: the bothers meeting together is very encouraging. It is the need of the hour in Pakistan to be united and give witness of our unity to the other people in the country.
Rev. Arif M. Siraj- Moderator of the Presbyterian church in Pakistan said: we need to be one in our opinion and one in the faith because Christ is one and according to the 1st letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians he expects us to be one in the Lord. God has given us many blessings and we need to use them for the welfare for all by developing one thinking among ourselves.
Bishop Irfan Jamil of the diocese of Lahore church of Pakistan said that Jesus Christ is not divided but we are divided. The topic of this Unity Octave “Has Christ been divided” invites us to reflect on each one’s life. The unity is our basis to be one in spirit and opinion. Our attitude is to be broadminded to accept and appreciate the talents found in each one’s churches. Every church is gifted with a special gift as some are apostles, preachers and teachers etc found in the 1 Corinthians 12. We can benefit from the talents of each other. Let us use them for the greater glory of God.
Towards the end of this prayer service, Archbishop Sebastian Francis Shaw OFM of Lahore said: It is a joyful evening when the brothers of different churches are gathered here at the Catholic Cathedral. It is an evening like the Pentecost when people from different countries were present. They were affected by the Holy Spirit. We need to be soft hearted to appreciate and accept the difference of each denomination.