Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
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Jhansi - 284001, Uttar Pradesh, India
Jhansi diocese is in the northern India's state of Uttar Pradesh.
It has an area of 29,418 square kilometers, with seven civil districts: Jhansi, Lalitpur, Jalaun, Banda, Chitrakoot, Hamirpur, and Mahoba.
Important cities in the diocese are: Jhansi, Lalitpur, Mahoba, Banda, Hamirpur
There are 3,832 Catholics, representing 0.046 percent of 82, 32,071 people in the territory. Followers of other religions are Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs.
The diocese has 21 parishes and mission stations.
Most of the Catholics are migrants and are railway employees, who live in the towns. Rural convert Catholics are very few.
Most of the people in the region belong to the middle class, backward community and they are farmers. They cultivate wheat, paddy, gram and groundnut.
People in the diocese speak Hindi, Urdu, Bhundelkhandi and English.
Jhansi has a historical fort, which is a tourist attraction. Chitrakoot is another famous tourist centre. The fair at Hamirpur attracts lots of people. It also has a famous Orcha temple.
The diocesan territory, then belonging to the Allahabad diocese, was detached in 1929 and was entrusted to the Maltese Province Capuchins, who were working in Allahabad diocese.
Though the area was declared a prefecture on Jan. 12, 1940, it remained without its prefect due to World War II. On Jan. 21, 1946, Msgr Francis Xavier Fenech O.F.M. Cap was appointed its Prefect Apostolic.
On July 5, 1954 the Prefecture was raised to be a diocese by appointing the Prefect Apostolic Msgr Francis Xavier Fenech O.F.M. Cap as its first bishop.
Msgr Baptist Mudartha was appointed its auxiliary bishop in 1963. He succeeded Msgr Fenech as its first Indian bishop in August 1967.
On Feb. 10, 1999, the civil districts of Bhind, Datia, Gwalior, Morena, Shivpuri and Sheopur, belonging to the neighbouring Madhya Pradesh state, were detached from Jhansi diocese, to form the diocese of Gwalior.
The former prelates were: