News letter – May 2021 ………………
Greetings in the name of the Risen Christ !
The awesome experience of resurrection witnessed at the empty tomb by Mary Magdalene and the disciples, disconnected history from the present-day world. A novel direction of knowledge which is humanly unfathomable, has streamed down through the past as a wonderful blessing. Donald Rumsfeld a US Defense Secretary, once commented that through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, God has guided us towards a realization or understanding beyond the limits of human thinking. An empty tomb does not depict a void but represents a pure and powerful enactment. Humans cannot understand God’s actions, and He begins execution from where humans cease to function.
Although the Sinhala and Tamil New Year has caused much activity among the society, the looming danger of the Corona virus has not been wiped out, and the irresponsible behavior of the population is threatening our own existence. A serious breakdown of discipline and civility is apparent in the country’s governing hierarchy, and their arbitrary or irrational decision-making is challenging the country’s stability. In such a scenario, it is challenging to move towards the ‘hope of resurrection’. According to the Gospel of St. Luke Chapter 24 verses 31-35 especially 31-32 – the road to Emmaus reminds us of Jesus’s revelation to us, ‘opening the eyes of the disciples’ and their hearts burning within means that they were alerted to the reality and also drew attention to a wider vision.
Disreputable issues of port city project, east and west terminals of the Sri Lankan Port as well as bribery and corruption is forcing the country towards more crises, while the agitated people resort to aggressive behavior, abuse of women, murder, narcotics and lawlessness escalating on a daily basis. In a global comparison our country is radically plunging in all standards, because the lawmakers are the lawbreakers, disregarding humane virtues and ethics.
Strong is our faith, if we are able to view and face life’s realities, in a wide-angle, even when we cannot visualize or identify what we see or feel. Faith, to be dynamic, active and sustainable in us, we should face the world with a correct vision along with people in our surrounding; we will experience worthy outcomes if we develop this nature and reorganize our mission in the future.
God bless you all.
Vicar – St Paul’s Church Kandy
In such a scenario, it is challenging to move towards the ‘hope of resurrection’. According to the Gospel of St. Luke Chapter 24 verses 31-35 especially 31-32 – the road to Emmaus reminds us of Jesus’s revelation to us, ‘opening the eyes of the disciples’ and their hearts burning within means that they were alerted to the reality and also drew attention to a wider vision.
TO THE 64TH ANNUAL SESSION
OF THE DIOCESE OF KURUNAGALA,
CHURCH OF CEYLON, 2019/29
A. Pastoral Message
"I always thank my God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in him you have been enriched in every-way with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge God thus conﬁrming our testimony about Christ among you. Therefore you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed. He will also keep you ﬁrm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord" (1 Corinthians 1:4-9)
Dear members of the council welcome to the 64th Annual session of the Diocese of Kurunagala. It is the time of the year we recall and recollect this past year and we look forward to the New Year. What we endured in the past few months, we would never have imagined at the end of the last annual session held roughly around this time. We were recovering from the deadly attacks that have rocked our nation and then this year we were confronted with a crisis which we have not expected. It is the covid-l9 pandemic still affecting the world as we speak and the many nations including us that were hit hardly in all aspects of life.
It is with great joy that we welcome into our midst Rev. N. Arulnathan the Principal of the Theological College of Lanka Pilimatalawa as the chief guest for this year’s conference. Rev. Arul is a senior minister of the Methodist Church in Sri Lanka and has served in many regions of the country. He has also completed his higher studies abroad and ﬁnally in South Africa. His specialization is Diaconal Ministry and Administration related topics. Rev. Arul we are happy to have you at this prestigious event and we look forward to hear from you. We remember your ministry and the TCL in our prayers.
St Paul uses his epistles always in the task of encouragement. These beautiful words resonate his genuine compassion towards all those whom he knew well. During this crisis we came together and we realized how much out community, family, the church and the society needed each other’s comfort and care. We also thanked God every time we knew that God’s grace was sufﬁcient for all of us and all those whom we cared for. We ourselves observed how we were enriched with the gifts of the Spirit as we took care of our budget and embraced a simple life style. We managed to help each other in crisis. We looked unto God with the new medium of communication. We kept in close contact with each and everyone who we knew need our prayers. This was not only Christian wish but which blanketed the whole of the country and even the world.
We were encouraged by how well we started treating our environment and how much we took responsibility with the awareness campaigns. We came together to help he most vulnerable and the weak. It is no secret that God enriched us during this time. While at times we felt powerless God ‘keeps us ﬁrm to the end’ making us reach for the best in humanity. The stories of courage and inspiration from all over the world are such as we have never heard before. We as individuals and as members of a fellowship must thank God that ‘God is faithful’ and even in calamity God’s goodness shone through.
The crisis is by no means over. Even in the most sophisticated health care systems, it is taxing the people and especially the most vulnerable. The world economy almost came to a standstill with travel, international trade and poverty taking its toll on countries. Still the mandatory regulations of awareness are still on at our workplaces, public places and in general. It is our concern that we must continue to follow the necessary instructions as Sri Lanka battles out this pandemic. Yet with the situation sustained around the world, our constant prayers are needed as people, marginalized communities, governments all seek answers in this time of conﬂict.