As the Christians in India are encountering repeated incidents of violence against churches and the Christian faithful, they are asking the government for the protection of churches and safety, in view of the Easter celebrations.
As reported to Fides, the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), say that “protection is necessary during Holy Week”, given that “violence against individual Christians and churches continues unabated in different parts of India”. The community fears an organized attack against Christian faithful and churches during Holy Week.
As Christians, participating in the liturgies of the passion, death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, we ask for protection and security for our defenseless community” writes the GCIC.
Christians in India are also concerned about the slow pace of the judicial system in pursuing the perpetrators of the attacks. Among the most recent incidents, on March 18 six Christians, including a four-year-old girl, were wounded in the village of Gopanpally in the state of Telangana, while peacefully participating in a prayer vigil in a Christian Pentecostal hall. The faithful were beaten and forced to flee, chased by a crowd of fanatics. The hall was devastated.
Earlier a joint statement on the situation of religious freedom in the country was signed by Archbishop Anil Couto, of Delhi, Archbishop Kuriakose Bharanikulangara, of the Faridabad Syro-Malabar Catholic Eparchy and Bishop Jacob Barnabas, of the Syro-Malankara Catholic church along with many other leaders of Christian denominations in India that discrimination and targeted violence will be ended by strong political will and administrative action. Fides