Agitators Refuse to move Deceased Body from Church, Archbishop Clarifies over spurt of misinformation
Bengaluru: Certain agitating groups of people are whipping up communal tension in society and disharmony in the Church by housing the deceased body of a 65-year old Catholic woman till date and time, (Expired Sunday 10th July 2016) in the canonically shut down Church of St. Paul the Hermit Church in Vishwanatha Nagenahalli. The agitators are spreading false propaganda that the neighbouring Church of St. James (officially entrusted for the spiritual needs of the people) is refusing funeral rites.
Some of the agitators/protestors are ill-informed or misinformed and not in any way associated with the Church pastoral and temporal administration and are making highly insensitive, perverted and misdirected statements in public and in the Media, falsely accusing the Archbishop and also disturbing the peace of the Church community.
Be it known to all that St Paul the Hermit Church was shut down by Archbishop Dr Bernard Moras on 21st April 2016 as it was binding upon him by the universal Catholic Church Law (Canon Law) and in full justification of his Office as Archbishop of Bangalore Archdiocese.
That he was doing it with great pain but had to abide by Canon Law in the interest of the whole church. He communicated in clear terms that Canon Law 1187 permits the statue, bust or image of any person who is declared ‘Saint’, ‘Blessed’ can be erected within the Church/Church premises. Any installation of an image/statue in the Church requires the explicit consent/permission of the Archbishop.
The Church was shut down because a bust of deceased Bangalore Archdiocesan priest C Selvaraj was unlawfully installed in the Church in Full violation of Canonical regulations and without the permission/consent of the Archbishop and despite official public warning and also official intimation to the serving Parish Priest. Despite being fully made aware of the rightful closure of the Church, some protestors have also been fanning flames of disharmony by hunger strike, demanding the reopening of the Church.
The allegations and accusations that the deceased Chinnamma Chowrappa (65) is being denied funeral rites is a BLATANT LIE aimed at creating communal tension. Archbishop Dr Bernard Moras has publically and officially communicated Church members vide his communication dated 4th May 2016 that alternate arrangements have been made for the spiritual needs of the people. He has done so by virtue of his Office and with deep personal spiritual concern for the Spiritual needs of all the Church members.
The neighbouring Church, (St James Church, Marianpalaya) has been entrusted to attend to the Spiritual needs of the Church members in view of St Paul the Hermit Church being closed till the unlawfully installed bust of the priest is removed. St James Church and its priest/priests serving there have been officially permitted to address all the Spiritual needs and perform rituals for the members of St Paul the Hermit Church whenever needed, till the Church is officially re-opened.
The Archbishop desires this Office to communicate emphatically, that by his conscience, he holds in the highest regard and in daily prayer, all the people entrusted to his pastoral care and also seeks the prayers of all people that Truth may prevail over Untruth and Peace over disharmony.