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Interfaith prayers for victims of quakes

Religions take part in prayer meeting for Japan and Myanmar’s Shan state quake victims

Interfaith prayers for victims of quakes
Participants in the service staff, Mandalay

April 4, 2011

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Faithful and clergy from many religions in Mandalay gathered recently to hold joint prayers for quake and tsunami victims in Japan, as well as the victims of Shan State’s earthquake. Around 200 priests, pastors, religious sisters, Buddhist monks, nuns and lay people from different religions took part in the interfaith prayer gathering in the hall of the Sacred Heart Cathedral, Mandalay city on April 2. The Mandalay interfaith network group organized the event. The gathering held one minute’ s silence to pray for victims of both quakes, after which, Buddhist, Hindu, Muslim, Baha’i and Christian representatives led the prayers. Sympathy messages in Myanmar and Japanese were written while Christian youths sang gospel songs and a Protestant pastor gave a thanksgiving speech during the event. U Nay Win, general secretary of the Young Men’s Christian Association in Mandalay, said that the aim of the interfaith prayer meeting was not only to pray for the quake victims but also to build bridges among different religions. “All religions have built an interfaith network and come closer together for charitable works by setting aside prejudices,” he said. “It was a privilege for us to pray together.  We are more than ready to join other events in the future,” Daw Wanna Pa Pa, a Baha’i schoolteacher said. The interfaith prayer program organizers also raised around US$ 2,600 which they said they are going to send to quake survivors in Japan. They also plan to collect further cash to help quake survivors in Shan State, in northeastern Myanmar. MY13848.1648

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