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Young people launch diocesan website

Timothians in Rawalpindi hope to show friendlier face of conflict-plagued region

Young people launch diocesan website
Timothians at the launch of new website
Benish Aqmal, Rawalpindi

January 23, 2012

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A youth group from St. Joseph's Cathedral in Rawalpindi is hoping to show a friendlier side to their restive region with the launch of a new diocesan website. The website, launched on Saturday, includes details of parish events, a photo gallery of youth activities and links to Facebook users among Timothians, the group which helped develop the project. Daughter of St Paul Sister Athens Angeles, the main organizer, said current events necessitated the need to go on line in Islamabad-Rawalpindi diocese. “We want to offer hope and good news to a conservative society facing new challenges every day. Utilizing the potential of youth and expressing their concerns in a Christian way seemed the best option,” she said. More than 60 people including Muslim web masters/developers, seminarians and nuns attended the launch, which coincided with the feast day of St. Timothy, in the cathedral’s compound. “This is the first time we had invited Muslims who hope our initiative will help counter fundamentalism and fanaticism,” said Sr Athens, the patron of the Timothians, who financed the training of 13 young people who took a web design course last year. Sonish Akmal, a Timothian who designed the site, clicked the mouse which revealed the first Catholic Church run online presence. “We plan to boost a culture of reading by publishing blogs and building communities. Keeping the site going and sparing time for studies is the next challenge,” she said, adding that the setting up of a chat room is in the pipeline. Sr Athens hopes the new domain will lead to more online progress for the local Church. “Only a few priests are on Facebook, while Our Lady of Lourdes Minor Seminary has only one computer,” she said. The northern diocese of Islamabad-Rawalpindi came under the international spotlight after the killing of Osama bin Laden last year. Church journalism remains limited in the region as conflict with hardline Taliban groups rages in the northwest. Related Reports Pakistan parish is first to go online    
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