Pakistan Primate: “Murder will not shake our faith in Christ”

Many of those killed in the Peshawar bombing were women and children Photo Credit: Reuters

Many of those killed in the Peshawar bombing were women and children
Photo Credit: Reuters

ACN – The Primate of Pakistan has vowed that attacks on Christians will neither dent believers’ faith in Christ and his promises, nor dampen their spirits, and that the Church will look to the future.

Bp Samuel Azariah said attacks such as the recent double suicide bombings in Peshawar had left the country’s Christians angry and fearful, but would not shake their faith in Christ.

Speaking to the Episcopal News Service at the World Council of Churches assembly in Busan, the Moderator of the Church of Pakistan said, “[The attack] was a big shock for the Christians. We lost over 115 people and over 160 people were wounded in just one go; in the middle of worship service. Most of the victims were little children and women.”

“In spite of the beating and the brutal attacks, our faith in the teaching of Jesus Christ, our faith in the promise of abundant life, our faith in the hope of Christ is as lively as it was in the life of the apostles and of the early church.

“Therefore we continue to remain in that faith and nothing will dampen our spirits: bombing, murder, shooting will not dampen our spirits or our commitment to Jesus Christ.”

The Church of Pakistan’s most senior bishop revealed that since the incident the church appeared to be stronger in many ways: “After the Peshawar incident we have seen the churches getting closer, united, and attendance in the worship has just grown.

“The interest of the youth in the life of the Church has just expanded. I’m not saying persecution should be done to strengthen the Church, I’m [just] saying what we’re experiencing in Pakistan.”

Bishop Azariah said Christians are still hurting and angry at what was the worst attack on believers in the country’s history.

However he stressed that the Church is also in a time of self-reflection and strategising. “Are we as the Church and as Christians able to live and witness to our commitment and calling, and what we are supposed to do as citizens of Pakistan?”

The Bishop made it clear that this is just why he himself remains in this most challenging of countries: “because the Church has a contribution to make.”

Categories: Headlines, World
Tags: Asia

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