Prelate welcomes Pope’s words on behalf of Asia Bibi
November 18, 2010
A Pakistani prelate has praised Pope Benedict for calling for the release of Asia Bibi, a Christian woman who was sentenced to death on blasphemy charges after she refused to convert to Islam.
“We are very grateful to the Holy Father for his words in support of Asia Bibi, for his attention towards the sufferings of Christians in Pakistan and our rights,” said Bishop Andrew Francis of Multan. “On behalf of the bishops and the entire community of believers in Christ, we express our sincere thanks for his great courage, for the protection of the voiceless, those who are innocent victims of violence and abuse.”
Bishop Francis added that a “prayer campaign [will be] held in all churches for the life of Asia Bibi. The faithful will gather in adoration before the Blessed Sacrament and pray for her release, entrusting her suffering to the Lord.”
“Asia Bibi’s case is very sad,” he continued. “We are really outraged and shocked by the continuous abuse of the law on blasphemy. Asia is the mother of four children, one of whom is disabled. It is a great injustice and suffering to inflict on this family.”
According to the Fides news agency, Bishop Francis has translated Dominus Jesus (the 2000 Congregation of the Doctrine of the Faith document on the necessity of Christ and the Church for salvation) into Urdu and has distributed the document to many Muslims.