Archbishop’s House (BOMBAY), Reacts to Comments on SILENT VOICE.

It is the utmost desire of  SILENT VOICE, to provide exposure to every word, opinion, observation uttered by our readers. In this context, we have started the practice of putting up readers comments as main post, where it deserves.

This post is special, as you may see; because it is a reaction to one of the comment made by a reader, which is being denied by a high profile authority. Therefore, it needs to be displayed prominently; we perceive.

GREG

P. S: this post is related to: 

Laity Speaks on MEMORANDUM cum MINUTES:Archbishop Cardinal Oswald Gracias meets GREG: Part II

Home_of_the_Archbishop_of_Bombay

ARCHBISHOP HOUSE, (BOMBAY)

Roney Corriea said,

November 14, 2013 at 11:53 am · Edit

Not a single reply from him is satisfactory. He along with the politician out here made fools of the villagers asking them to withdraw the dumping ground agitation on 3 grounds. 1) it would be shifted within a year 2) cases would be withdrawn 3) monitoring committee would be set up to see that villagers are not troubled by the stink in that year. All his promises have become false and he has left the sheep and run away by seeing the wolves coming.

I met him on Jan 2013 and he said that if your local politician had lied to you all what can I do. I mentioned that you had asked the people from the pulpit to withdraw the agitation and solve it amicably and when the politician has cheated us, please announce from the same pulpit that because the NCP/Congress have betrayed the Christians, no one will vote for them. And he said he cannot do this. Here when I asked him are you working for Congress, he said YES. Matthew 23:5 “They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them”
.
Now I have left everything in the hands of Lord Jesus Christ (Emmanuel) who has come again in flesh. He will judge the world truly and have no partiality. He will separate the goats from the sheep. For he said: Matthew 15:13 “Every plant that my heavenly Father has not planted will be uprooted”.

In HIM I remain
Roney Corriea

 

  • Silent Voice said,

    December 11, 2013 at 12:06 pm · Edit

    Response received Via E Mail…..

    Dear Mr Corriea,

    I am writing on behalf of His Eminence Oswald Cardinal Gracias, with regard to your comment dated 14 November 2013, on the so called minutes of the meeting of the Editor, Mr Greg Pereira of Silent Voice with His Eminence on 1 November 2013 which was posted on the same blog. This was followed by your comments.

    Your comments dated 14 November 2013 published on the aforesaid blog, “Here when I asked him are you working for Congress, he said YES,” is a false statement. According to His Eminence, he made no such statement. I therefore request you to be gracious enough to withdraw the said statement by publishing an apology, on the same blog of Silent Voice, at the earliest.

    Fr Emmanuel K.T
    Secretary to the Archbishop

Rajasthan government to restore two ancient churches

The restoration process would cost at a cost of 75,00,000 rupees each.

Jaipur:

The Rajasthan government has decided to conserve two over-century-old churches, which are in dilapidated conditions, at Todgarh in Ajmer and Bandikui in Dausa district.

Christians in the state comprise about 1 percent of the state’s total population.

The restoration process would cost at a cost of 75,00,000 rupees each.

The work is being undertaken by the Rajasthan Heritage Development and Maintenance Authority which has replaced the similar body set up for the conservation of the heritage monuments of Amber.

The authority, headed by former chief secretary Salauddin Ahmed, has started the task of restoring the two churches and all efforts have been made to ensure that the old buildings do not lose its original design.

Todgarh is named after the British Political Agent Col. James Tod who wrote the first authoritative book on the erstwhile Rajputana ‘The Annals & Antiquity of Rajputana’.

The book gives a very interesting aspect of the state focusing on the various principalities and culture of the then princely state.

Located in the midst of hills with lush greens all around, this place was once the summer capital of the British officers located at Ajmer and they would shift their base for four months of summer in the cool climes of Todgarh.

As this village was under the rule of the Mewar state, Maharana Bhim Singh rechristened it Todgarh to honour the British historian and the Political Agent. Col Tod with his own money built a small fortress and in this fort, he wrote the historic book.

Later attracted by its natural beauty, an English Catholic missionary, William Robb, built a church on one of the hillocks. He also built a post office and a jail in the hillock. The church was built by Robb between 1850 and 1860 after the departure of Col Tod to England.

This church still exists but in a dilapidated condition where some reverends who live there try and maintain it with their meager means.

Robb also built a bungalow for himself in 1860 and this bungalow has since been taken over by a Jain spiritual body, Pragya Shikhar.

Bandikui has been a railway junction for over a century now and the British chose it as it is located between Jaipur and Alwar to build the first railway junction in 1873. When Bandikui was being developed as a railway junction, a number of Britons and Christians settled there.

Over 140 years ago, a large number of the British and Indian Christians settled there felt the need to build a church near the railway station.

This Protestant church was built in Roman architecture style. After the British left, the church was maintained by the Anglo Indian communities and Christians, but as the Christians and Anglo-Indian population started dwindling, there was nobody to maintain the church.

As the church was almost deserted, miscreants vandalize it and took away windows, doors and glasses and even the idol of Jesus was stolen.

Source: times of india

Rajasthan , Old Churches , Restoration 
Photograph of painting of Lt. Col James Tod fr...

Photograph of painting of Lt. Col James Tod from, frontispiece, 1920 edition of his Annals and antiquities of Rajasthan, volume 2 edited by William Crooke, Oxford University Press, 1920 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Police raise presence in Kandhamal: sectarian violance of 2008

 

Security stepped up for riot anniversary.

 

 

 

The ruins of a Christian church in Sikoketa in the Raikia block of Kandhamal district

By Ritu Sharma
Barakhama: 

Officials in Orissa state’s Kandhamal district have stepped up security in sensitive areas ahead of the anniversary of sectarian violence in 2008 during which more than 100 Christians were killed by Hindu mobs and many more were injured or sexually assaulted.

“We have deployed police … to avoid any untoward incident,” N Tirumala Nayak, the district collector, told ucanews.com.

Nayak, the highest government official in the district, said no specific threats have been made against Christians and that the increased deployment of police was only a precaution.

The district endured seven weeks of violence that broke out on Aug 25, 2008, in which Hindu extremists targeted the Christian community, assaulted several women including a Catholic nun and burned homes, churches and orphanages owned or run by Christians.

Christian residents say they fear for their safety, despite reassurances from authorities.

“We are living in fear all the time. According to the rioters [in 2008], anybody who wants to live here has to be a Hindu or has to become one by converting,” said Kartik Nayak, a Christian youth leader in the Barakhama area, home to a large Christian community.

“Police have also started patrolling in our area and asking if there is any trouble from the other community,” he added.

Several others in Barakhama said they fear attacks from Hindus on the anniversary, which also commemorates the murder of Hindu leader Laxmanananda – an event that triggered the violence.

Maoist rebels subsequently claimed responsibility for Laxmananada’s killing, but the blame was pinned on Christians.

“The Hindu fundamentalists want to kill us. They threaten us day and night,” said Nayak, adding that the smallest provocation could lead to violence.

Barakhama was hard hit during the 2008 violence. Two people were killed and all 322 Christian homes in the settlement were burned.

“We fear them. They killed my husband just because he was a Christian. We cannot do anything. They are in the majority,” said Loorma Digal, whose husband was shot dead by the rioters.

However, district collector Nayak said he had not received any information on specific threats to the Christian community. “We also have sources on the ground that update us about the situation and everything is peaceful,” he added.

Despite their fears, Christians say they will observe the anniversary with peaceful programs including workshops, rallies and demonstrations in the state capital of Bhubaneswar, said Fr Ajay Kumar Singh, who works on behalf of victims of the violence.

Fr Singh added that a rally has been scheduled for August 30 in Phulbani town in Kandhamal to demand justice for the victims of the 2008 violence, which will include participants from civil society, the Church and human rights organizations.

Few suspects have been convicted in the five years since the riots broke out, and those that have received only minor sentences. Thousands more, say victims, have escaped justice.

“We will submit a memorandum of our demands to the district head and the governor of the state,” Fr Singh said.

Source: ucanews.com

 

Kandhamal , Anti-Christian Violence 

 

 

English: Images from Orissa Communal violence....

English: Images from Orissa Communal violence. A Christian institution is in flames during the violence against christians by Hindu nationalists (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

Christians demand law to control Church properties

Yours truly, under the aegis of SILENT VOICE, has been pursuing with the hierarchy of Bombay Archdiocese, to bring in transparency, in Church Property matters.

Church Properties are clandestinely being disposed off, by parish authorities, bypassing all the regulations.

GREG

Christians are a mere 2.5 per cent of the country’s population.

Panaji:

Lay Christian leaders have alleged that the Church authorities control funds equivalent to the Indian Navy’s annual budget, demanding a law to govern Church properties.

“The Church is also the second largest employer after the government,” said Remy Denis, All India Catholic Union President.

He said that Christians are a mere 2.5 per cent of the country’s population but, the Church in India suffers from a case of plenty.

Eduardo Faleiro, a former Union minister and Goa NRI Commissioner, is among the growing number of Catholics who support a law to govern Church properties and a far greater degree of transparency in the way the Church manages its earthly assets.

“The Church is not a symbol of power but service, and democratic laws must apply to it equally. All religions must be kept on the same footing,” Faleiro said at a conference called to debate the matter of bringing Church properties under state laws.

The laws that govern Church properties in Goa were enacted during the Portuguese regime. The same laws have long since been repealed in Portugal, Faleiro said.

Almost all other religions in India have laws enacted to administer their properties, said K T Thomas, former Supreme Court judge.

Hindu temples are governed by laws specifically enacted for each trust and their accounts are subject to judicial review.

The Sikhs, one of the smallest religious groups in the country, have the Sikh Gurudwara Act. Muslim trust properties comes under the Wakf Act.

“I feel the opposition from the Christians is on account of a fear that a provision for judicial scrutiny is likely to expose the expenses and magnitude of wealth of the denomination,” Thomas said.

Thomas said there was a misplaced apprehension that the parliament, through legislation, would grab the properties of the churches.

No such law could be passed by parliament or state legislatures, he said. All religious denominations have the right to own and acquire properties, establish and maintain religious institutions.

“But, in matters of administration of your properties you have to abide by the law,” he said.

Source: Deccan Herald

 

Church Properties , Law , Goa 

Christians suffer as politicians chase the Hindu vote

 

 

India’s political opponents unite in targeting the Church.

 

 

 

By John Dayal
New Delhi:

India’s microscopic Christian community and its clergy may become “collateral damage” in an unspoken but very palpable competitive wooing of the majority Hindu community in the run-up to next year’s general election, as well as the preceding elections to the state legislative assemblies.

The political trend can be seen in three states. Maharashtra is understood to be planning a law to criminalize conversions, while the Himachal Pradesh government is aiming to reverse a High Court judgment that earlier deleted some of the more vicious components of its anti-conversion law.

This notorious law forced citizens and their pastors to give a month’s notice to the state authorities and then await their decision before they could formally profess the faith. Despite the High Court ban, neighboring Madhya Pradesh now wants to incorporate it into its existing, ironically named Freedom of Religion Act.

In fact it goes a step further and wants the police to launch mandatory enquires into why a person wants to change his faith and leave the Hindu fold. Four year jail terms and 100,000-rupee (US$1,700) fines are in the offing for pastors who break the law.

In the 1960s, Madhya Pradesh was among the first Indian states, with Orissa and Arunachal Pradesh, to seek a curb on conversions to Christianity. Ruled by the BJP (Indian People’s Party), it has now gone entirely overboard on the Hindu-centric agenda of its ideological parent, the RSS (National Volunteers Association.) Their prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi has made it clear where his priorities lie, wasting no opportunity to stress his support for the Hindu heartland.

The mainstay of the ruling Congress Party’s political platform has always been a non-partisan ideology, with affirmative action for the poor, the marginalized, religious minorities, tribals and dalits. But it is no secret that Congress also harbors majoritarian elements which can surface any time the party has to seek the Hindu vote.

What complicates the politics of these moves against conversions — and the phrase is generally understood to mean conversion to Christianity, and not to Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism and Hinduism — is the focus on Christian preachers and evangelists.

Since Indian independence, Islam has not really been involved in proselytizing, with its numbers growing only through birth. There have been many instances of Hindus converting to Sikhism, while conversions to Buddhism take place on a mass scale from the ranks of the dalits, who are then called Ambedkarites or neo-Buddhists. As many as 50,000 have been converted in one single event.

RSS supporters in the tribal areas routinely convert animistic and Christian tribals to Hinduism, under what they call their Ghar Wapsi program, which translates as “homecoming to faith.” There has been no legal action ever against this.

In states where the police and the subordinate bureaucracy are known to be bigoted and partisan, anti-conversion laws can become extremely punitive. Human rights activists have often pointed out that such laws encourage the persecution and victimization of the Christian community, especially of the clergy.

The Church does not seem to have anticipated this. It has no thesis for a united pre-emptive challenge to such laws. Individual groups go to court, but it is not an easy process. Some sections of the Church, in fact, are quick to blame Pentecostal groups for inviting such laws by their provocative evangelization. Others seem ready to sue for peace and are already making overtures to the BJP: the YMCA feted Narendra Modi at a function in Ahmedabad last month.

The last time the Church voiced its anger was when then prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee called for a “national debate on conversions,” and the Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Alan de Lastic challenged him, pointing out that such talk encouraged violence against hapless Christians in the country.

It remains to be seen how the Church will respond now.

John Dayal is the general-secretary of the All India Christian Council and a member of the Indian government’s National Integration Council.

Source: ucanews.com

 

Christians Suffer ,New Delhi ,Minorites ,Politicians ,Hindu Vote 

 

 

Map of India showing location of Madhya Pradesh

Map of India showing location of Madhya Pradesh (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

 

 

 

 

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