July (Page 2)

The Syro-Malabar diocese of Faridabad has appealed to the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to pave the way for the reconstruction of the Little Flower Church in New Delhi, which was demolished last July 12 because it was considered unauthorised despite the fact that it had been operating for almost 15 years."We call on you to intervene immediately," writes Bishop Kuriakose Bharanikulangara, "to rebuild and restore the damage caused to the faithful in this place of prayer, which they devastated without any respect". At the same time, the diocese has also approached the National Commission for Minorities on the issue, while - as the video shows - the community continues to gather to pray amidst the rubble.Kerala's local government chief Pinarayi Vijayanha also said he was shocked by the demolition. "Something like this should not have happened, we will see what can be done about it," he said. Meanwhile, in Delhi, there is a back-and-forth over who ordered the demolition. The Delhi Development Authority, a federal government body, denies responsibility.The eviction notice to the "illegal encroachers" was allegedly issued by the Block Development Officer of the South Delhi district, which is under the local government's tax office. The notice, dated

THE AGE-OLD DEBATE ON CONVERSION CONTINUES WITH THE SAME PASSION, TONE AND ARGUMENT EVEN TODAY An upper-caste Hindu boy, Narayan Sesadri Parlikar, joined a school run by the Church of Scotland in Bombay way back in 1838. Five years later in 1843, he converted to become a Christian. The Bombay Courier, the leading English daily of the time, published a column-length story on Parlikar’s conversion, triggering a major upheaval among the city's upper-caste Hindu society. The day after his conversion, the outraged members of the Brahmin priestly caste to whom the boy belonged, passed a resolution censuring the event. “The missionaries of Christian faith … distribute books on their dharma (religion). In order to facilitate their efforts, they have established schools. For the sake of education, Hindu boys join their schools. The boys are immature in their understanding of Hindu dharma. Their minds become confused, and many have been converted to Christianity,” the resolution said. The 19th-century debate on religious conversion continues with the same passion, tone, and argument even today. The parties in the debate haven’t progressed much in understanding each other’s claims on the contentious issue of conversion that keeps surfacing in politics, media and courts. Those who want to outlaw conversion argue that

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