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
A recent Supreme Court order stated that the Church of North India (CNI) cannot have any authority over one of five Protestant denominations over which it holds sway.
Based on this order, another denomination will approach the state to pull away from the CNI.
Formed in 1970, the CNI is an umbrella body which constitutes five denominations of the Protestant church.
The apex court’s order of Sep. 30 states that the CNI cannot have any authority — religious or with respect to properties of one of the churches. This order was given after a faction of one of the five denominations, The First District Church of Brethren (FDCB), challenged the power of CNI.
Following the court order in September, another of the five denominations — The Church of India, Pakistan, Burma and Ceylon — has stated that they too will approach state authorities to end the role of CNI over itself.
This opposition that is brewing among the denominations of the CNI has put a question mark over its very existence.
The various courts in which this matter came up, before being heard in the Supreme Court, raised various questions. One of these was: ‘Whether by mere merger... the CNI becomes the legal successor?’
The SC also settled the issue about following of a faith. It upheld the Gujarat high court’s decision that stated: “...in the name of unification and merger, it is aimed that there is total control of not only properties and the churches but it will also have an ultimate effect of imposing particular faith or belief, which is not permissible.”
“There is nothing legal that CNI has to show to prove that it is legally having control...We will write to the government,” alleged Sandeep Gaikwad, president of all India legal committee of People’s Synod, a body formed to counter CNI.
India: Police say no charges filed yet, interrogation ongoing.