Four survivors of the worst anti-Christian violence in modern India were ordained as Capuchin priests on Dec.27.
“God chose you like Moses to be faithful, responsible to lead the people,” Bishop Sarat Chandra Nayak of Berhampur, who led the ordination ceremony, told the newly ordained during his homily.
Around 1,500 people, including 47 priests and 20 nuns, attended the ceremony at Mary Matha Parish, Simonbadi, Kandhamal district under Cuttack-Bhubaneswar archdiocese of Odisha State.
The venue of the ordination ceremony was 12 km from Arundaya Capuchin Ashram Minor Seminary at Barokhoma that was attacked twice during the 2007-2008 anti-Christian violence that engulfed the Kandhamal district of Odisha State in eastern India.
“Over a thousand years after Abraham, the Jews were living as slaves in Egypt. Moses led the Jews out of slavery in Egypt and led them to the Holy Land that God had promised them. It was a challenging call for Moses from God,” the prelate reminded Fathers Rahul Bastaray, George Patmajhi, Anand Pradhan and Amar Kumar Singh.
He said the communal violence took away everything from the Christians of Kandhamal except their faith in Jesus Christ “because God preferred to live in us.”