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ICC Note:
Christians in Pakistan won’t allow persecution to stop them from celebrating Easter. The Christians of Joseph’s Colony are homeless because their homes were destroyed by mobs of angry Muslims. These Muslims attacked because there was a rumor that a Christian had defiled a copy of the Koran. Will these Christians be able to celebrate in peace?       
3/29/2013 Pakistan (ICN) – Fear and violence will not prevent Christians of Pakistan to celebrate with great devotion, and massive presence, Easter. Mgr Joseph Coutts, Archbishop of Lahore and President of the Episcopal Conference, said: “At Easter, our churches will be packed. The faith of the faithful is alive and strong: violence or attacks, such as that of Joseph Colony in Lahore, have the effect of strengthening it even more.”
Archbishop Coutts is convinced that Christians in Pakistan will continue to give a strong testimony: “Let us not lose hope, we know that the Lord is with us and the faithful themselves, even in difficult moments, encourage all priests: the Catholic laity in Pakistan is growing.”
The incident of Joseph Colony, where 178 homes of the faithful were burned by a Muslim mob, for an alleged blasphemy case, has not discouraged the faithful in Lahore.
Fr. Bonnie Mendes told Fides: “the atmosphere, despite the tragic violence, is of great optimism and there is a will to rebuild or repair their homes. The reconstruction is being carried out very quickly, people are going back to their homes, the provincial government gave compensation and in a few days, working day and night, more than 30 families have already rebuilt their homes. Caritas is also helping the homeless a lot.

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