Loading
Sri Lankan government declines Catholic-Anglican call for Christmas ceasefire

.- Despite appeals from Catholic and Anglican bishops, the Sri Lankan government on Thursday said it will not declare a ceasefire for Christmas.

A Wednesday statement from bishops of both Churches asked the government (GoSL) and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) to declare a truce during Christmas and the New Year.

"We are now approaching Christmas, a world festival of peace. At this time many Christians and even persons of other faiths will be encouraged by the birth of Christ, the Prince of Peace, to review and strengthen relationships," the statement said, according to the Sri Lankan Daily News.

"It is consequently expected that family ties will be renewed, communities will gather for fellowship, strangers will be welcomed, the marginalized included and the oppressed set free.

"Where relationships are strained or hostile it is expected that dividing walls will come down and healing will take place through forgiveness and reconciliation."

The statement was signed by Thomas Savundranayagam, the Catholic Bishop of Jaffna; Rayappa Joseph, Catholic Bishop of Mannar; Norbert Andradi, Catholic Bishop of Anuradhapura; Kumara Ilangasinghe, Anglican Bishop of Kurunegala; and Duleep de Chickera, Anglican Bishop of Colombo.

"It is this spirit of Christmas that compels us as Christian leaders of the country to urge the GoSL and the LTTE to declare a truce to include Christmas and the New Year," the bishops wrote, urging that there be no fighting or troop movement during the truce.

"Such an initiative will be seen the world over as a sign of political maturity and generosity," they said, calling on the government to take the lead in making the truce.

The peace would bring "immense relief" to civilians in LTTE controlled areas, the bishops said.

"It will also enable the Christians of these areas to worship and engage in their religious practices with less anxiety, as well as bring some respite to the war weary soldiers and cadres and some peace of mind to their parents and loved ones."

The bishops also appealed to both parties to "seriously consider" establishing safe zones for civilians, advising that religious leaders may help such a process.

"We are of the opinion that this war must stop, but till that happens such, an arrangement will demonstrate our respect for humanity and save some innocent lives from further trauma or even death.

"We can and must assert that it is possible to care for people even in times of war," they continued. "Nothing should prevent us from our highest priority of enabling life and safeguarding humanity.

"May the Peace of Christ fill our hearts and nation," the Catholic and Anglican bishops prayed, according to the Sri Lankan Daily News.

On Thursday, Media Center for National Security (MCNS) Director Lakshman Hulugalla told the Sri Lankan Daily Mirror that the government stated that it would go in for a ceasefire only if the Tigers laid down their arms. Till then there will be no decision of a ceasefire."

Fighting continues in the north of Sri Lanka. The military has vowed to capture the town of Killinochchi, a rebel stronghold. The rebels claim the army suffered a great defeat in its last attempt to take the town.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

A state without territory elects new government
A state without territory elects new government
The renewal of the Legionaries of Christ
Presentation of the book "The Pastor"
Synod on the Family October 2014
Preferential option for the poor
God is alive, even in sport
'A forbidden God' named Best Film at the International Catholic Film Festival
Vatican backs a 'Pause for Peace' during World Cup final
The effects of religious violence in Sarajevo 
The origin of Corpus Christi 
Corpus Christi at the Vatican 
Homage to an Indian Cardinal
Train of the Child's Light
New book explaining gestures of the Mass
Encounter between Pope Francis and the Charismatic Renewal in the Spirit Movement.
Religious tensions subside amid Balkan floods
John Paul II Center for Studies on Marriage and Family
Saint John Paul II on cartoon
Syrian Christian refugees
Papal Foundation Pilgrimage
Jul
24

Liturgical Calendar

July 24, 2014

Thursday of the Sixteenth Week in Ordinary Time

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 13:10-17

Gospel
Date
07/24/14
07/23/14
07/20/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Jer 2: 1-3, 7-8, 12-13
Gospel:: Mt 13: 10-17

Saint of the Day

St. Charbel Makhlouf »

Saint
Date
07/23/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 13:10-17

Homily
Date
07/24/14
07/23/14
07/21/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: