CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 16 March 2019

Print Version    Email to Friend
An attack on all Pakistan

LAHORE (SE): As a sign that the attack on people gathered in Gulshan-i-Iqbal Park in the city of Lahore is an attack on all of Pakistan, candlelight vigils for the dead and wounded have been attended by people from all faiths and all walks of life.

Muslims, Hindus, Christians and other groups have joined hands in condemning the attack in the strongest possible way.

Dominican Father James Channan wrote in a letter published by AsiaNews, “Most Pakistani Muslims are peace-loving and condemn all sorts of harm, discrimination and attacks against Christians.”

He adds, “Only a small number of misguided, radical groups attack us and Muslims as well. They attack mosques, churches, schools, public parks, the army, police stations, buses and trains. The aim of militants is to create panic and a sense of insecurity.”

Archbishop Sabastian Shah, from Lahore, told Aid to the Church in Need, “I visited every bedside and every victim, of whatever faith. It was truly difficult, because I saw so many children, only four- or five-years-old, both Christians and Muslims, who had been wounded or killed by this terrible attack.”

Archbishop Shah said that it is customary to celebrate in the park after Christmas and Easter Masses. It is also a popular place for family picnics and relaxing.

“After the attacks last year on two Christian churches in the Youhanabad quarter, we were fearful that there might be another attack, and for this reason the government had provided all the necessary security measures to protect the churches—but no one had thought about the park,” he said.

 

He added there may have been an intention to send a message to the prime minister, Nawaz Sharif, as his home is close to the park and his brother, Shahbaz Sharif, also lives nearby.

More from this section