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
Nun tells UN of fear that dogs Orissa Christians
How long can gun-totting soldiers protect freedom? sister asksLocal tribal people displaced by the anti-Christian violence living in makeshift camps (Photo by Michael Coyne)
- Ajay Kumar Singh, Bhubaneswar
- January 13, 2011
â€śWe celebrated Christmas under the shadow of guns. How long can the gun-toting security forces protect the communityâ€™s religious freedom?â€ť Sister Justine SenapatiÂ asked.
Margaret Sekaggya, who is responsible for compiling reports on human rights situation in various countries, visited Orissa yesterday.
She came to New Delhi on Jan. 10 on a 12-day visit and is scheduled to also tour Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir and West Bengal.
Sister Senapati, who works among victims of the 2008 anti-Christian violence in Orissa, said local activists explained the human rights situation in Kandhamal when the official visited the Orissa capital of Bhubaneswar.
The nun a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Annecy congregation, who has been trained in the UN Human Rights Mechanism in Switzerland, told the visitor that Christians in Kandhamal still face problems to practice their religion.
She also told the UN official that even human rights activists of Kandhamal work in a â€śfrightening situationâ€ť amid armed security forces and Hindu militant groups.
She said activists were shocked by government claims that it has rehabilitated those displaced by the violence.
Adikand Singh, another activist, said they explained to Sekaggya how upper caste Hindus attack dalit and tribal people and their supporters in the name of religion.
Dhirendra Panda, who coordinated the Bhubaneswar consultation, said the UN officialâ€™s visit has encouraged local activists.
Sekaggya told a consultation in New Delhi on Jan. 11 that she came at the invitation of the Indian government.
"We are quite happy that the Indian government has positively responded to our interest to visit the country. Usually, the Asian countries are reluctant to invite us,â€ť she added.
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