ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s television stations broadcast live Sunday mass conducted by Catholic Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith, after fears that extremists who bombed churches on Easter Sunday, may try to repeat their attacks.
The Mass was televised by Sri Lanka’s MTV channel and simulcast by other national channels. Church authorities decided not to hold Sunday mass on April 28.
Catholic Archbishop Malcolm Ranjith had earned widespread praise for calling for calm and urging his flock or others not to extract collective punishment on Muslims for the actions of extremists.
He said during his sermon that there people that one meet on the road, at the work place, may be from different communities or parties.
“Every person we meet at the workplace, on the road is a one of a million blessings,” the Archbishop said. “We need others. God said we need others it is not good for man to be alone.
“It is a blessing to see people of so many colours and hues.
“That is why we cannot destroy another person in the name of god. It is a contradiction of to kill someone in the name of God; God who is merciful and God who has created my brother and sister.”
He was preaching to a congregation made up of fellow priests, brothers and nuns.
Islamic State an extreme Muslim nationalist group has claimed responsibility for attacks which authorities say were carried out by members of two local groups, National Thawheed Jammath (NTJ) and Jamathei Millathu Ibraheem (JMI) will be banned using newly invoked emergency laws.
Easter Sunday bombers hit two Catholic Churches in Colombo and Negombo and an evangelical church in the East close to where the extremists groups are believed to have originated.
Sri Lanka’s evangelical churches are often attacked by extreme Buddhist elements. Sri Lanka’s senior Bhuddist clergy has also urged calm. (Colombo/Apr28/2019)