By Cardinal Oswald Gracias
New Delhi, June 14, 2019: Cardinal Oswald Gracias, head of the Catholic Church in India, was the chief guest of the Eid Milap Function organized by Jamiat-ul-Ulema in New Delhi Eid Milan.
The religious festival after Ramadan was celebrated at the National Level on June 10. It was organized by Jamat Ulama i Hind, one of the biggest Muslim congregations in India.
Given below is the text of Cardinal Gracias’ address at the event:
At this moment, as we celebrate Eid Milan, we feel a strong bond of affection and unity among us all. God has brought has brought us all together this evening, to celebrate this function. You have just completed your month of fasting Ramadan, this fasting has helped you to spend time, reconnecting with God in prayer, strengthening your feelings of love for the needy with the practice of Zakaat, also bonded every family together.
Ramzan the month of fasting, has not been a month of pain, but a period of joy because you experience the Peace of God in your homes and in your persons. Your Ramadan fast, reminds me of our own Christian fast at the time of LENT. Lent is similar in many ways to Ramazan, Lent is a time, to set aside Time for God, to reconnect and bond with the sufferings of Jesus Christ who was crucified on the CROSS, to make reparation for our sins.
At this moment, I want to recollect, a very successful and fruitful visit of Pope Francis to Abu Dhabi on Feb 4 earlier this year, when the Pope signed the historic ‘Document on Human Fraternity’ together Grand Imam of Al-Azhar. That joint document gave us much to ponder on, and publicly committed All Christians to adopt a culture of Dialogue as a path; and mutual cooperation as a code of conduct ; and reciprocal understanding, as a method and standard.
It declared that the most important causes of the Crises in the Modern world is desensitization of the human conscience; distancing from religious values and the prevailing individualism accompanied by philosophy,.
Our call is then to promote Human fraternity, all of us, are children of God, all of us are brothers and sisters of one Big family. All of us are called to imbibe and live a Culture of Dialogue, we do a dialogue of different types, and we live a Dialogue of Life when we meet each other today.. a dialogue of Action, when we collaborate for the good of the community and Dialogue of Exchange when we try to understand each other more.
One month ago, my brother Maulana Mohmad Madani visited me in Mumbai and together we condemned the horrific attacks on churches and Hotels Easter Sunday in Sri Lanka. I have returned that visit, coming here today, joining and proclaiming the of importance of Human Fraternity
Thank you for inviting me here, thank you for your friendship. All of us must work together, build and strengthen a Brighter India. We must build a better India, where there is Harmony, Peace and Progress.
God Bless You!