From the Vicar’s desk………………
Dear friends in Christ,
We step into a festive month of this anniversary year with a sense of great joy of the greatest festival of Christians, Easter. This festival reminds us that the Christ who died for our sins is the only risen and living Lord; and furthermore calls us to rejoice by renewing our faith in the same Christ. When Thomas the disciple of Jesus saw the risen Lord, he made his faith statement saying My Lord and my God. This faith statement calls and challenges all of us and the whole congregation to follow the example of Thomas to witness to the risen Lord.
Also this month of April adds more joy and expectation to our life and faith journey as Sri Lankans, by preparing us for the Sinhala and Tamil New Year. This national festival too calls us to reflect and renew our thoughts about the festival and calls us to take a new look at it; here I am recalled by the saying of a great Sri Lankan Methodist theologian and pastor the Rev. Dr. D.T.Niles; where he said that the Christianity in Sri Lanka should be rooted in the Sri Lankan soil; this saying was strengthened by another saying of metropolitan Lakdasa de Mel, the Founder Bishop of our diocese and first national vicar of St. Paul’s - Kandy; he said that "we are not only Christian Sri Lankans but also Sri Lankan Christians". Let us also strive to give life to the Sri Lankan Christianity and spirituality by admiring our own Traditional, local and national values and adopting them to our faith practices
May the joy of the Easter and the celebration of the New Year bring joy and hope to our faith journey.
by National Christian Council of Sri Lanka
Dearly beloved in Christ,
We have celebrated another Christmas, the incarnation of God in Christ, who took the human form, sacrificed himself to death on the cross and rose again, defeating the powers of death and destruction. He came so that all may have life, life in its fullness and life eternal. God in Christ throughout history has always displayed his unending concern for every human being, ensuring human dignity and affirming life for all.
The festivities of Christmas will soon fade away and the Presidential election is around the corner. The coming days could be characterized by violence, resulting in death, injury and destruction to property, campaigns and counter campaigns, arguments and counter arguments which could lead to unnecessary mudslinging, arrogance and display of brutal force.
We as Christians need to affirm that elections are an important mechanism in ensuring the participation of the people in the democratic arena, and is the duty and responsibility of every one to prayerfully exercise his franchise. It is the duty of every citizen to discern the signs of the time and cast his vote carefully, cautiously and with a sense of responsibility. No one should refrain from doing so. Hence we call upon everyone to vote on the election day.
Secondly, when making our choice, we need to be influenced by the values of our Gospel. Our choice has to be one that affirms the fullness of life to everyone, where every human being is respected, dignity ensured, and security assured. We should not be carried away by our individual interests, or groupish/clannish attitudes, but look to the welfare of every ordinary citizen in our country.
Thirdly, we need to always condemn all forms of violence and intimidation. Everyone must be free to make her/his choice. This is possible only if everyone has the views of all contenders. Therefore, the campaign must be fair and afford equal opportunity to all.
While urging to uphold the above, we would also like to remind our churches to be vigilant in your area of any violence or intimidation, which should be brought to the notice of the authorities concerned immediately. This is part of our Christian discipleship and obligation.
We urge all our congregations to pray for a peaceful election where democratic principles are upheld and pray for God’s guidance and blessing on whoever is elected so that our beloved country can experience justice, peace and fullness of life to all.
27th December 2014