Written by Staff Writer
21 Jul, 2019 | 9:22 pm
COLOMBO (News 1st):- The Katuwapitiya St. Sebastian’s Church was reopened today (July 21), three months after the April 21st suicide attack on the church.
Devotees gathered at the St. Sebastian’s Church in Katuwapitiya this morning, calling to memory the loved ones they lost, and praying for the repose of their souls. Over 1000 devotees attended the mass today and a special security plan was in place surrounding the church premises.
During today’s mass, the front pews of the church were occupied by the survivors of the attack three months ago. The service began at 8.30 am this morning and the mass was celebrated by Archbishop of Colombo His Eminence Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith. The reconstructed church was later dedicated by the Archbishop.
Speaking during the mass His Eminence said that there still prevails a question as to whether this attack could have been prevented since there was more than one way to actually prevent, which was however not done because of selfish politics and the greed for power.
The Cardinal said that regardless of the number of commissions, committees appointed and reports prepared according to their whims and fancies that no results could be actually seen. He said that this is a very natural situation in the country where everything is done under wraps. The Cardinal also said that when they think about the terror attack that all they feel is fear because on Wednesday the Divaina newspaper had said that the leader of the IS Abu Bakker Bhagdadi is in a military base of a powerful nation, Iran which is regarded as one of the most powerful countries in the world. He questions as to whether the leader of the IS which was controlled by this nation.
Cardinal Ranjith says that when the UN visited the houses of the victims of the Katuwapitiya blast that it was not under the intention of helping them but instead to search for justice for the suspects in custody of the police or the army. He also commented on how the intelligence units of the country were made dysfunctional in order to satisfy the needs of the UN, the Human Rights Council or the International NGO’s which is why nothing was done when these extremists were captured in Wanathilluwa. He directly lashed out at the issues due to the political forces of the country saying that their attempts to cover up the matter was why the 300 lives were lost while also saying that everything happened because the leaders of the country do not have a strong backbone.
The Cardinal also addressing the victims, the injured and their families said that it is because of these leaders who are responsible for these innocent lives that an attack of such magnitude occurred, which brought upon them so much misery and added that it is time that they be sent home.
The Cardinal also made a request from the general public of the country as well as Muslim devotees across the world. He said that the reason he requested to not hate the Muslims or the religion because this attack was not orchestrated by them but by an international group that used a group of youth as part of their international conspiracy and urged the people to treat them with respect since they cannot be held accountable.
A memorial constructed for the people who lost their lives in the April 21st attacks was also unveiled today. In line with the event, the foundation stone for a new building for Sunday school students, presentation of scholarships and a number of other programs were conducted under the auspices of Deputy Leader of the United National Party Minister Sajith Premadasa.
Minister Sajith Premadasa also presented to the Cardinal a new proposal to provide financial aid to construct houses for the victims of the April 21st attacks. Commenting on this gesture, the Cardinal said that they would like to thank the Minister and his wife for spearheading the initiative and concluding all programs at the Kochchikade church, the Katuwapitiya church as well as the church in Batticaloa.
A special memorial was also held at the burial grounds of the Katuwapitiya Church. The people gathered at the event questioned the Minister if justice will be granted to them since they only want justice and not compensation for anything. The Minister assured them that they will be granted justice.
21 May, 2019 | 09:35 PM
24 Apr, 2019 | 11:25 AM
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