Catholics in Pakistan
Archdiocese of Lahore

Shahbaz Bhatti: The Mission of a “True Politician,” Cardinal Parolin

Shahbaz Bhatti: The Mission of a “True Politician,” Cardinal Parolin

The Vatican Secretary of State Wrote the Preface of the Book “Shahbaz – The Voice of Justice, “by Paul Bhatti, Brother of the Pakistani Politician Killed on March 2, 2011.

“There are persons who are willing to die for an ideal in which they believe. Among these is Shahbaz Bhatti, Federal Minister of Minorities of Pakistan, killed on March 2, 2011 at Islamabad by armed men.” Thus writes the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, in the Preface of the book, which goes on sale today and is published by Saint Paul’s: “Shabaz – The Voice of Justice,” written by Paul Bhatti, Pakistani doctor and politician, older brother of the martyred Minister.

The author reviews his brother’s life with private memories and family anecdotes, up to his commitment in politics and worry over the constant threats that led to the day of his assassination.
The commitment of a Christian politician, killed six years ago, whom Parolin praises, pointing him out as a model. “A politician in the true sense of the term, who chose the Gospel as his style of life and marked his work with it,” writes the Cardinal.

The Vatican Secretary of States pauses, in particular, on the “unforgettable phrases” that Shahbaz Bhatti has left us as testament, some of which are reported in the volume in question. They “express the depth of his intimate relation with Christ,” notes Parolin.

Bhatti’s ideal was not “a simple idea, not a mere value, though noble and lofty. It was what Christians have that is most dear, namely, Christ Himself,” reflects the Cardinal. In fact, in his spiritual testament he wrote: “I want to live for Christ and I want to die for Him.”

As Cardinal Parolin highlights in the preface, from the book it emerges how Shahbaz Bhatti had at heart the lot of the poorest, of the weakest, of the last.” And “among these, he kept a particular place for the Christian minority of Pakistan.

On 2nd March 2011, Shahbaz Bhatti, then Federal Minister for Minority affairs had been shot dead by armed militants in Islamabad. Shahbaz was shot dead at the I-8/3 area of Islamabad by three armed assailants who could not be unidentified. Reports had claimed that outlawed and banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) had claimed responsibility for the attack.

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