Catholic World News

Major Indian political party denounces papal reference to anti-Christian violence

October 13, 2008

Pope Benedict XVI offered a prayer for peace in India during his Angelus audience on Sunday, October 12. But his word drew an angry rebuke from leaders of India's Hindu-nationalist party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

After presiding at the canonization of Sister Alfonsa of the Immaculate Conception, India's first canonized native saint, the Holy Father mentioned his prayers for the Christians of that country "during this difficult time," as they face an onslaught of religious violence. The Pope urged "the perpetrators of violence to renounce these acts and join with their brothers and sisters to work together in building a civilization of love."

BJP denounced Pope Benedict’s reference to anti-Christian violence in their nation. "India is a sovereign country," said a party spokesman, "and I do not think any religious head should say anything."


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  • Posted by: jacobtoo - Nov. 15, 2010 5:45 AM ET USA

    Dr. Mirus's essay is a gem, the annual eye-opener that appears in some Catholic publication.

  • Posted by: paul.goodell1892 - Nov. 13, 2010 10:56 AM ET USA

    I definitely agree with your thesis, as far as it goes. I think it should also be pointed out that the many diocesan hierarchies' actions regarding abusive priests (damage control, silencing dissent, protecting the clergy instead of the laity, etc.) did at least as much to damage the reputations of the Church in the West. At the very least, it gave anti-Catholic forces all the ammunition they needed to discredit the Church in the public's mind.

  • Posted by: dqualk - Nov. 12, 2010 6:53 PM ET USA

    So true. Good analysis of the situation.

  • Posted by: sparch - Nov. 12, 2010 5:15 PM ET USA

    The Church never really moved closer to the secular beliefs of the culture. The culture embraced the Church when it proved expedient to the culture to do so. Those pundits in the Church tried to pull the church over into their secular camp. Thank God for Pope John Paul II. Christ and the Church prevailed, not to be watered down by those who wanted to use the Church to their own ends. Some still do not see what had really happened and espouse a sullied Christianity.

  • Posted by: - Nov. 12, 2010 8:27 AM ET USA

    If the culture is not authentically Catholic (a VERY rare modern occurrence) to be be Catholic MUST be to be counter-cultural.