The Christmas letter of Archbishop of Impal
The letter adresses all the Christians in Manipur. "We are all one in humanity".
With Christmas approaching, the Archbishop of the conflict-torn Manipur state in India, Archbishop Linus Neli, sent a message addressing all the Christians in his community. In Manipur, ethnic violence broke out in May, destroying many lives, homes and churches. The violence toned down, but the hostilities and tension remain.
In a situation like this, many parishes cannot carry out Christmas liturgies and gather families together for celebration.
Archbishop Neli, in his letter, asks the members of his community to “refrain from grandiose festive celebrations during this Christmas and New Year 2024, avoiding in particularly the material and social aspects”. He advises this for a good reason.
“Make sacrifices, save and share your resources with the poor and needy, especially with the suffering brothers and sisters in shelters and with the displaced who are struggling without basic human needs. Pray for God’s mercy which generates living hope.”
The Archbishop underlined that,
“God adds joy to our hearts by gathering the human family around his Son regardless of race, tribe, language, culture, status, gender or community. We are all one in humanity”
But there is hope for Christians in Manipur. The Supreme Court ordered the local government to make a list containing all the damaged religious buildings so those can be rebuilt. Let us hope that in the near future, people will be able to return to their homes and celebrate together in the rebuilt churches.