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Book aims to ease mistrust of Christianity

Explains Church missions in India and how they benefit society

Book aims to ease mistrust of Christianity
Father Dominic Emmanuel
Bijay Kumar Minj, New Delhi

January 18, 2011

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A Catholic priest has published a book aimed at dispelling “misconceptions” about Christianity held by the majority of Indians. Divine Word Father Dominic Emmanuel says Christianity, Hindutva, Conversion and FAQs will help those who want to know more about Christianity and the rationale behind the Church’s social services in the country. The 171-page book was launched at a function in New Delhi on Jan. 15, celebrating the feast of Saint Arnold Jansen, founder of the Divine Word Society. Father Victor D’Souza, vicar-general of Delhi archdiocese, gave the first copy to Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Salvatore Pennachchio. The book, divided into ten chapters, follows a question and answer format. It tries to explain situations that have been the source of many allegations made against missioners in order to allay suspicions Indians harbor about Christianity, the writer told The book is also useful for pastors and Christian leaders who have difficulty responding to allegations against the Church and its activities, Father Emmanuel said. Hindutva is a term used to describe a philosophy followed by right-wing Hindu groups that pushes for the creation of a Hindu theocratic state in India.
Father Victor D’Souza, right, gives a copy of the book to Auxiliary Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Delhi
These groups allege the Church’s main aim is to convert poor and gullible Hindus to Christianity using social services as a façade. Auxiliary Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Delhi described the book as a “small spark” that will enhance the Church’s mission to spread Gospel values. Bishop Mulakkal lamented that Hindu fundamentalists have succeeded in frightening Christians in India and confined Church workers to convents and institutions. “We don’t have to live in fear since we are citizens of this country with an equal right to practice our faith,” he said. The bishop, who started several inter-faith movements in Jalandhar diocese as a priest, appealed to all religions to work together to create a peaceful and harmonious society. Related report Catholic Priest Wins Federal Harmony Award, Expects Others To Work For Peace IC12889.1637
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