Fr Bruno Cadoré Encounters Muslims and Hindus during his Visit to Pakistan

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Fr Bruno Cadoré in Pakistan
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From the 1st to the 9th of December 2015, fr Bruno Cadoré visited the Dominican family in Pakistan in the company of fr Vincent Lu Ha (Socius for Asia-Pacific) and fr Orlando Acevedo Rueda (Socius for Apostolic Life). He was warmly received by Fr Pascal Paulus, OP (Vice Provincial of the Vice Province of Pakistan), the entire brothers and members of the Dominican family.

At the House of Studies in Karachi, fr Bruno met with the brothers in the Community, including the student brothers and their formators. He shared with them on their apostolates and its challenges. He encouraged the brothers and assured them of his prayers. He went ahead to inaugurate and bless the new building of the House of Studies in Karachi. He presided at the Eucharistic celebration and in his homily he reminded the brothers to be sensitive to the needs of the poor, showing them mercy and compassion as our heavenly Father does to us. After the Mass, there was a reception by the Dominican Laity and Youth with traditional wears and displays. In his speech, fr Pascal thanked all those present and in a special way, all the benefactors who have contributed towards the construction of the new building. The blessing of the new building concluded with the lighting of the jubilee candle by fr Bruno which he gave to the Dominican brothers and sisters, sending them forth to preach anew.

Fr Bruno participated at the joint Bhaghti organized by the Rahim Yar Khan and Bahawalpur Marwari Tribal communities. Many Hindu and Christian faithful were also present at the historic occasion. The Bhaghti which is a ritual of praises to God through singing of Hymns was led by Bro. Shahzad Aquinas OP and Catechist Maurice. The whole congregation sat on the ground for this including fr Bruno. He was later honoured with the turban by the tribal representatives. Bhaghti is the only effective way of evangelization among the Marwari Hindu tribe.

Fr Bruno visited St Dominic Priory and St Dominic Convent Higher Secondary School at Bahawalpur. At the priory he blessed the Jubilee Pole erected in honour of the 800th anniversary of the Order. He was later entertained by the students who gave a beautiful rendition of the official Jubilee hymn. He was also at Sahiwal to visit the brothers and the faithful of Sacred Heart Parish and he was welcomed with a grand reception. There he celebrated the Holy Eucharist with the entire community.

Before he left Pakistan, he was at the Peace Center in Lahore for an interfaith celebration in honour of the Jubilee of the Order. He was joined by dignitaries from other denominations and religions including; Maulana Syed Abdul Khabir Azad, the Grand Imam of the Badshahi Mosque and Dr. Munawwar Chand, a Hindu leader. Here, Fr James Channan (Director of the Peace Center) is working actively with other religious leaders to sow and nature the seed of peace. At the ceremony, fr Bruno and fr Orlando were presented with Peace Awards by the centre.

Fr Bruno later paid a visit to the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore and was warmly welcomed by the Grand Imam Maulana at the steps of the mosque and then taken for a guided tour. The 17th century Mosque is the second largest Mosque in Pakistan. Maulana expressed great joy in fr Bruno’s visit and also shared of the interfaith message he carries through this mosque. Fr Bruno in turn expressed great joy and appreciation at the openness of the Grand Imam. This visit is a milestone to further strengthen the much needed Christian-Muslim bonds and dialogue in Pakistan.

This visit has afforded fr Bruno the opportunity to experience first-hand the efforts of the friars and sisters at preaching and coexisting in peace in a delicate multi-religious environment. He expressed his appreciation and promised his continuous support and prayers.

Check out the beautiful pictures from Pakistan.

 

(11 December 2015)