Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Police hold 240 for anti-Buddhist violence
Court wants answers on why riots weren't stoppedA Buddhist man looks at the ruins of a temple in Ramu, Coxâ€™s Bazar
- ucanews.com reporters, Dhaka and Coxâ€™s Bazar
- October 3, 2012
The violence allegedly erupted after a picture of a burnt Qu'ran appeared on the Facebook profile of a local Buddhist man. It resulted in 19 Buddhist temples and around 100 homes being destroyed.
Several protests condemning the attacks have been staged this week.Â Yesterday, several hundred people formed a human chain in front of National Museum in Dhaka.
â€śIâ€™ve lost the words to console my Buddhist brothers and sisters. Every culprit behind these heinous attacks should be arrested and handed exemplary punishment,â€ť said Anisul Haque, a prominent writer and journalist.
Ministers and leaders from the ruling Awami League say the violence was premeditated and instigated by local opposition legislators and Islamist parties.
Leaders from the opposition Bangladesh Nationalist Party and Jamaat-e-Islami have denied the allegations, saying that the authoritiesâ€™ inaction shows that the ruling party was behind the violence.
Today a High Court bench ordered the secretary of the Home Ministry, the police chief and district administrators in Coxâ€™s Bazar and Chittagong, as well as police chiefs in four other areas, to explain within a week why the administration failed to stop the violence.
The officer in charge at Ramu police station in Coxâ€™s Bazar, the predominantly Buddhist area worst hit in the riots, has been removed for his inaction.
A curfew has been lifted in the area but law enforcement, border guards and army personnel continue to mount patrols.
Meanwhile, victims say aid from the government has been insufficient. Many Buddhists who fled are still homeless.
Babita Barua, 35, a local college teacher, said compensation was paltry compared to the huge losses the community sustained.
â€śAttackers destroyed our belongings and valuables worth tens of thousands, but up to now Iâ€™ve received 25,000 taka [US$305]. The army has constructed a tin fence around our burnt homestead, but we are still living under the sky,â€ť she said.
Muslims destroy Buddhist sites