2016-03-31 13:33:00

Arch. John Barwa shares Easter message

When the terrible anti-Christian violence took place in eastern India’s Odisha state during Christmas of 2007, and again in August 2008, Archbishop John Barwa was the coadjutor bishop of Rourkela, a diocese in Odisha.  When his predecessor Alphonse Bilung retired in 2009, he succeeded as bishop of Rourkela.  In February 2011, Pope Benedict XVI appointed him the Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar, based in the state capital Bhubaneshwar.    Under his jurisdiction comes the District of Kandhamal, which was the epicentre of the 2008 brutal violence against ‎Christians that erupted with untold ferocity following the Aug. 23 assassination of  Hindu leader ‎Swami Lakshmanananda, which Hindu extremists falsely blamed on Christians despite Maoist rebels claiming the murder.  

Nearly 8 years after the violence, Christians are indeed shining examples of faith, forgiveness and reconciliation as they still await justice, compensation and truth, says Archbishop  Barwa in an Easter message to Vatican Radio.    Talking to us on his mobile phone from Odisha, he speaks about the martyrdom of his Christians against the backdrop of the powerful, the rich and the extremists, who want to lord it over others, especially the unfortunate, in stark contrast to Christ and his message of humble service and love.   Here’s the Easter message of Archbishop John Barwa of Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar:


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