Catholics in Pakistan
Archdiocese of Lahore

Promotion of peace and tolerance is the need of the hour, Archbishop Sebastian Francis Shaw

Lahore (Fr. Francis Nadeem): Children of different schools expressed their desire for peace through paintings and artistic models during an Art Exhibition held at Lahore on the occasion of International Peace Day. This significant occasion was organized by National Commission for Inter-religious Dialogue & Ecumenism (Catholic Bishops’ Conference – Pakistan) to mark the World Day of Peace 2017.

His Grace Archbishop Sebastian Francis Shaw OFM (Chairman NCIDE) was the chief guest of the occasion, accompanied by Fr. Francis Nadeem OFM Cap (Executive Secretary NCIDE), Fr. Afzal Iqbal OFM Cap and Moulana Mufti Ashiq Hussain.

The celebration began with plantation of an Olive Peace Tree in the premises of the school. His Grace Archbishop planted a an olive tree with Christian and Muslim children in a gesture of harmony.

Thanking all the guests and children Fr. Francis Nadeem OFM Cap appealed to entire nation to be united and work together for the restoration of peace, progress and stability of the country. He said that we are one nation and it is our national duty to contribute our efforts for this dignified cause.

In his message, His Grace Archbishop Sebastian Francis Shaw emphasized the need for the promotion of peace and tolerance. He expressed that today the entire world is in the grip of terrorism. There is bloodshed and extreme of violence in the name of religion and barbarians are mercilessly slaughtering the guiltless people including men, women and even the infants. In our motherland the situation is also terrible, the terrorists are targeting the public places, government institutions, offices of armed forces, sensitive installations, places of worships and even the schools through indiscriminate attempts. He further condemned the killing of Muslims in Burma and appealed to UNO to take immediate action.

All the participants appreciated the emotions and ambitions of the children while watching the paintings and posters on the subject of peace. Balloons and pigeons were released in the air to mark the day of Peace and convey this message to the whole country. The celebration ended with a prayer of peace.

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