Fr. George Daniel visiting us from Lahore, Pakistan
I was born a Catholic Christian. Christians are a tiny minority in an overwhelming Muslim Pakistan, with a population of more than 200 millions. I come from a family with fourchildren; 3 boys and 1 girl. My father works as a clerk in the flood and irrigation department, and my mother was a house-wife. For my parents, it was not easy at all to take care of us andeducate us. They always found them self struggling to make both ends meet. I grew up in a devout, and profoundly religious family. It is within this prayerful environment, that I heard God calling me to Himself, thus, a vocation conceived, born and grew. I became a priestbecause the love and mercy received and my family, and I wanted to share with everyone.
Real challenges of Christians, in particular, the Catholic Church, are innumerable. In all walks of our life as Catholic, we encounter these every moment of every day. Apart from hostile, oppressive, discriminatory and hateful attitude of state and society, we have to face true challenges of constant fear of our vulnerability. Any suspicion of any mal-action against Islam can trigger an attack, burning down Christian’s properties and even killing. This is the most crucial challenge we encounter, because the society is radical to the extreme, it doesn’t leave much room for others to exit. It is difficult to be a Christian, “We are aware” “For we who live are constantly being given up to death for the sake of Jesus, so the life of Jesus may be manifested in one mortal flesh” 2 Cor 4:11
St Stephen Martyr Parish has helped St. Paul’s Parish inLahore in various ways; by helping us furnish our church, by offering scholarship to two students: Natalie Wylde, studying in Bsc honors, and Ashbeel Shakie, studying doctor of Pharmacy. And Yohanna bad bombing incident at two churches by sending donations to the victims. In this incident there were more than 1,400 injured. St Stephen helps us constructing churches, because a church building is a source of strength, growing stronger and given Christians identity in a society which does not want to recognize their presence ever, and in giving out scholarships to students. I am very thankful and grateful for the love, concern and support we receive from this Parish through Msgr. Paul. Your help reminds me that “We are the Body of Christ” thus one, no matter where we are.