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Vatican official calls for religious cooperation in Pakistan

VATICAN CITY (CNS): “Christian love urges us to dialogue and to promote positive and constructive relations with individuals and communities of other religions. 

“It is uplifting to hear that tremendous effort has been made in Pakistan to witness the fact that Christians and Muslims can work and walk together in peace,” said Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-Fai, in a message marking a new missionary initiative of the Church in Pakistan. 

The secretary of the Congregation of the Evangelisation of Peoples, urged Pakistani Christians to spread the Christian message, but also to show respect for the Muslim faith. He called for religious cooperation saying, “As a small minority in a predominately Muslim society, the Church in Pakistan lives and moves within a framework which calls for sensitivity and great love for our Muslim brothers and sisters.” 

The Year of the Mission, which began on October 1 and ends on 30 September 2012, marks the 60th anniversary of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Pakistan. More than 100 religious leaders from seven dioceses met at for the three-day conference prior to the start of the mission, according to the Fides news. 

They discussed the challenges faced by Christians in Pakistan today, citing religious fundamentalism, inequality, discrimination and extremism. Christians make up only two percent of the population and face many obstacles in enjoying full religious freedom, they said. 

Archbishop Hon also asked Christians to be disciples of peace. He said, “As Christians, we are convinced of the truth that Christ is our peace. Thus, we proclaim Christ and preach his gospel, because by his life and death he taught us how to love serve and make peace among individuals.” 

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