Is the Catholic Church spearheading war crimes inquiry against Sri Lanka?
Posted on April 4th, 2014

 Shenali D Waduge

An article titled ‘Church’s Perseverance in Sri Lanka pays off’ written by Anto Akkara claims that the UN has decided to investigate possible war crimes because of a request made by the Sri Lankan Catholic Church. The writer perhaps is unaware of the ties between the LTTE and the Church over the years. Now that LTTE and 16 LTTE fronts have been officially banned it would be a good time to investigate these ties over the years. More so now that the ban imposed by the Sri Lankan Government include the Global Tamil Forum headed by a Catholic Father (Fr. Emmanuel) and the Church has done nothing against his nefarious activities.

The article itself is filled with numerous errors. First is the need to correct that the UN never officially placed civilian deaths at 40,000 and the statement by Gordon Weiss former UN spokesman upon retiring from the UN was disassociated by the UN itself http://un.lk/for-the-record/un-statement-on-former-spokesman-views/

In so far as rule of law is concerned, for advocates that demand the Governments apply rule of law and due procedure without bias why would they in turn wish to demand the release of 2 Catholic human rights activists who had been arrested without ascertaining what they had done wrong? Is it not a slap on justice to demand their release simply because one wore robes and belonged to the Catholic Church while the other carried a label called ‘human rights’?

Is this why the nod of silence has prevailed throughout centuries of pedophilia taking place inside the Church environs and traumatized children are now coming forward with their tales of woe? Returning to the 2 arrests why should Ruki Fernando or Father Praveen be released ? Is it because Ruki is supposedly a ‘prominent journalist’ or because Praveen is a Catholic Father? That does not look too good for law enforcement to be told that journalists, lawyers and Catholic clergy cannot be arrested! Not a single entity asked what they had even committed except to go on an international tirade asking their release!

The article makes reference to Bishop Rayyappu Joseph and Bishop Saundaranayagam. The article claims that ‘‘There has been always [adverse] reactions when we speak about unpleasant things’ ” what if these reactions were as a result of Rayappu Joseph opening the ‘Embassy of Tamil Eelam’ in London, or because he allowed LTTE to operate an office inside Madhu Church and the office was officially opened by him upon invitation by the LTTE? Would the US watch Catholic Bishops open Al Qaeda House or allow Al Qaeda to operate from any of its Churches?

What if these adverse reactions were due to Rayappu Joseph sending a letter signed by 30 Catholic priests in 2012 to the Asian Centre for the Progress of People requesting a war crimes inquiry against the Sri Lankan armed forces? Rajayppu Joseph went on to send another letter on 4 March 2012 signed by 31 Catholic priests to Navi Pillai going so far as to object to singing the national anthem in Sinhalese ” Would the US, EU and UK allow Bishops to create mischief by spurring people not to sing God Save the Queen? how many countries would tolerate such?

On 18 February 2013 Rayappu Joseph joined 132 Catholic priests to write to the UNHRC appealing to bring a resolution against Sri Lanka referring to themselves as ‘concerned Christians’ and going on to acknowledge the ‘self-determination of the Tamil people’ ” what has these initiatives got to do with spreading the word of Christ?

Anto Akkara quotes Rayappu Joseph alleging ‘structural genocide’ and ‘appropriation of lands and government-aided colonization schemes’ ” Did Akkara and others not bother to count how many Tamils live in their so called Tamil majority areas and also count how many Tamils actually live in non-Tamil majority areas to discover that the Tamils in non-Tamil majority areas are more and next ask themselves whether the Sinhalese have objected to Tamils purchasing property. running businesses and living amongst the Sinhalese? Would this not provide the answer to a lot of lies floating around?

In January this year Rayappu Joseph and Rev. Thomas Saundaranayagam accused Sri Lanka of using cluster bombs when US envoy Stephen Rapp arrived. Why would they wait 5 years to make this revelation unless it was timed for Geneva to tarnish the Sri Lankan state. On 3rd March 2014 Rayappu Joseph joined 204 Christian priests to again write to UNHRC calling for an international investigation. Not stopping there he joined 34 signatories which included Desmond Tutu, Chief Minister Wigneswaran, TNA leader Sambanthan and supposed unbiased UN Secretary General Panel of Expert Yasmin Sooka to request a Commission of Inquiry on Sri Lanka.

 What the common masses expected of Malcolm Ranjith the head of the Catholic Church to do was to either chide Rayappu Joseph or to collect 205 signatories of Christian priests to negate the lies of Rajyappu Joseph. Yet, Malcolm Ranjith did not go that extra mile and his statements compared over the years shows visible duplicity and ulterior motive.

What is interesting is that when Rayappu Joseph says ‘we are facing many difficulties here from fundamentalist groups from the South’ where Sinhala-speaking Buddhists are dominant does that not nullify all that he should stand for as a priest and how a Bishop should look after his flock?

What many are curious about is why it is always the Christian/Catholic clergy coming forward to speak on behalf of the Tamils? Why has the Christian/Catholic clergy been the conduit between the world and the LTTE? In this scenario we cannot overrule the fact that the Church is not simply another religious entity. The Roman Catholic Church represented by the Vatican is a sovereign state with Observer Status in the UN and the clergy are all agents or envoys of the Vatican taking orders from the Church and not the country’s they are born in.

Anto Akkara may like to project that the Church’s perseverance attributed to the Resolution being passed against Sri Lanka but it would also be good to balance this perseverance with some heavy facts that does not go in favor of the role played by the Church.

The orphanages LTTE picked its child ‘soldiers’ from were run by the Catholic clergy, the suicide cadres were Christians or Hindus by name only, most had even become ‘born again’s.’ Dhanu the suicide bomber who killed Rajiv Gandhi was a Catholic. The peace facilitating nations were all Christian evangelical nations who had their NGOs working closely with LTTE. LTTE theoretician was a Christian, Adele Balasingham the nurse who trained children to kill and take their own lives was also a Christian, many of LTTE’s top leaders were all Christian or namesake Hindus. The most influential evidence is the manner that dead LTTErs were all buried and not cremated as Hindus and Buddhists do. The orphanages were run by Christian priests, Christian priests have been arrested in the past for possessing arms and transporting arms for the LTTE, Christian priests have led pro-LTTE protests and placing these against letters calling for war crimes against Sri Lanka doesn’t really give the priests the look of impartial actors.

The ‘mission’ of these entities is very much a question unanswered and considering the rise in converted Hindus and Buddhists we begin to wonder if the numerical count of the Christian/Catholic population is being purposely kept at a low rate to hide the alarm that is likely to prevail. Let us not forget that from 90% Buddhist population South Korea’s Buddhist now number just 23% over 65 years. It is a good time for the Buddha Sasana Ministry and Buddhist themselves to seriously count the exact numbers of converts.

If the Church is part of the world regime change destabilizing operation connected to Western governments and their secret intelligence agencies and mafia it only spells the reenactment of modern colonial rule best known as neocolonialism. All that the colonial West needed to do was to board ships and invade nations and take over their administration and economy while converting natives to Catholicism/Christianity took place by force.

Today, the vessel is the UN, the tools are Human Rights and champions are local sepoys ever ready to betray their own people for money, personal pleasures and remunerations. When the US awards $1.7billion to Christian organizations and 7 out of 10 contributing nations to NGOs are Roman Catholic while 70% of UN’s religious NGOs were Christian, this equates to mean the Christian/Catholic influence, their way of thinking and their pattern of governance prevails in the administration and decision making in the halls of the UN itself thereby questioning the extent of transparency and accountability. Universal jurisprudence cannot be Christian/Catholic & Western centric totally ignoring the rich civilizational cultures, historical legal systems and value of the East.

Anto Akkara has also omitted to mention about Father Emmanuel the head of the Global Tamil Forum, now banned as a foreign terrorist organization under UNSC Resolution makes him aiding and abetting terrorism. When he compared Prabakaran the leader of the LTTE as ‘Jesus Christ’, the LTTE as ‘soldiers of Christ’, the LTTE suicide bombers as ‘martyrs of the Catholic Church’ and himself as ‘Moses’ not a hum came from the Catholic Church.

We would not be exaggerating in saying that the Church has been the catalyst to divide the Hindus and Buddhists over the years continuing what the colonial Christian West first started through their divide and rule policy.

Anto Akkara should have also balanced the article by placing some key questions before readers ”

  • why would the Jaffna District Catholic Youth Committee under the Bishop House in Jaffna carry out anti-national activities and attempt to subvert the youth?
  • why would the Catholic clergy train youth to enact cultural events to build resentment against the Sri Lankan Government (3 dramas held on 16 Dec 2012 by children from Jaffna Central College, Hindu College and Vembadi Girls College enacted that Eelam cause was not over / a drama staged on 27 Jul 2013 depicted 13th amendment ” the clergy involved were M V E Ravichandran (In Charge), Justin Gnanaprakasham (Committee Coordinator), Anton Jeyamsnadan (Pullopalai East Church)
  • why would Catholic clery from Vavuniya, Mannar, Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Jaffna join TNA and TNPF politicians on 27 Aug 2013 to conduct anti-Government protests in front of the UN office during Navi Pillai’s visit
  • Why would the St. Sebastians Church in Mallavi, Wanni run LTTE’s Voice of Tiger radio station with Radio Veritas run by the Asian Catholic Bishops Conference?

Similarly there are many other instances of the Catholic clergy taking a lead role and steering anti-national drives and no denouncements or actions against these priests have taken place by the head of the Catholic Church in Sri Lanka except to issue half-hearted statements.

It is for the ordinary Catholics to decide on the manner the Church and some of its clergy have been functioning in Sri Lanka by placing the facts in perspective. These actions do not warrant the Church to be portraying itself as victim in the light of the covert actions it has been involved in moreso when no action has been taken against the handful of clergy who are openly advocating separatism and aligning with terror outfits we can only deduce our own inferences and question the exact objective of the Church.

The head of the Catholic Church should play a responsible role given that the Church is not an indigenous institute in Sri Lanka on the grounds that orders are taken from the Vatican and the Vatican itself is a sovereign state. Therefore, as a sovereign state the Vatican functions no different to the manner the EU has been continuously hounding Sri Lanka as seen in the voting patterns at UNHRC.

In the context of Anto Ankarra’s article that seeks to establish the notion that the perseverance of the Catholic Church has paid off it would be good for the Catholics and Christians to ask whether they too advocate a war crimes tribunal and welcome the scenario that led to other countries falling prey to regime change and country take over initiatives using the UNHRC as a shield.

17 Responses to “Is the Catholic Church spearheading war crimes inquiry against Sri Lanka?”

  1. Nalliah Thayabharan Says:

    1797 Napoleon takes the lands under the control of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church The Pope has become the facto ruler of the city of Rome and the suburbs by the 6th century AD. But in 754 AD, Pepin the Short, king of the Franks, officially handed over these areas to Pope Stephen II. These Italian lands under direct rule of the Pope were called Papal States, or States of the Church or Pontifical States. Pope, with the help of regional powers like the Franks, continued to annex more territories by gifts, purchases, and conquests until the Papal States included nearly the whole of central Italy. These areas reached their greatest extent in the 16th century. In 1797, Napoleon Bonaparte took much of the territory. In 1815, after the allied forces defeated Napoleon at Waterloo and restored Papal rule back in these areas under Austrian protection. But in 1870, Italian King Victor Emmanuel II annexed all Papal states including Rome and limited the Pope’s jurisdiction to the Vatican. In protest, each Pope thereafter considered themselves as prisoners under Italian occupation. In 1929, in the Lateran Treaty, Italian king Victor Emmanuel III recognized the full independence of the Vatican City under Pope.

    Vatican has a history of pacts with criminal dictators as the Holy See signed treaties with monarchs and governments regardless of slavery, inhumanity, or torture they may have induced upon fellow human beings. Vatican had links to government organizations, right-wing nationalism, including Fascism and Nazism. Moreover, From 1920′s to the 1940′s most every right-wing dictator had been brought up as a Catholic: Hitler, Horthy, Franco, Petain, Mussolini, Pavelic, and Tiso (who has served as a Catholic priest).

    Pope Pius XI, in his own words a “man with no love for democracy,” helped to bring Mussolini’s Fascist Party to power in Italy and in 1926 solemnly declared:
    “Mussolini is a man sent by Divine Providence.”

    The Spanish people, stricken with poverty and a high rate of analphabets (about 80% of the population), had swept away monarchy, proclaimed a republic and elected a left-wing government in 1931. Separation of State and Church was made a reality, religious freedom was granted and civil marriage adopted. Some of the Church property – which was estimated at one third of the nation’s wealth – was nationalized. To fight the “Antichrists,” a violent, relentless Catholic opposition was promptly started on a large scale throughout Spain.

    By 1934 Catholic organizations already planned a coup d’état, having been in touch with the Fascist Government of Italy. On July 17, 1934 the Spanish Army rose in many Spanish towns. The Spanish Civil War had begun. As soon as the revolt broke out, a General Franco made haste to let the pope know that his coup had succeeded. The papal banner was unfurled over the rebel headquarters at Burgos, and the Pope Pius XI had Franco’s flag raised over the Vatican.
    This was the beginning of a world-wide Catholic offensive against Republican Spain. Bishops in Italy, Germany and other countries published pastoral letters urging Catholics to help. The pope spoke. The Spanish Civil War, he said, was a foretaste of what

    “is being prepared for Europe and the World unless the nations take appropriate measures against it.”
    — Pope Pius XI, December 25, 1936

    Mussolini sent thousands of troops, Hitler sent warplanes, warships, tanks, and soldiers. The Spanish people fought a bitter, relentless fight from 1936 until 1939. Before the demolition of yet another young democracy in Europe was complete, Pope Pius XI died.

    BBC broadcasts on Croatia – February 16, 1942 :

    “The worst atrocities are being committed in the environs of the archbishop of Zagreb [Stepinac]. The blood of brother is flowing in streams. The Orthodox are being forcibly converted to Catholicism and we do not hear the archbishop’s voice preaching revolt. Instead it is reported that he is taking part in Nazi and Fascist parades.”

    – Hitler’s Pope: The Secret History of Pius XII, by John Cornwell page 256

    Though Fascist governments eventually died out and the Vatican made sure to distance itself from them, later dictatorships under Catholic tyrants would yet again be given the Vatican’s full support.

    For example, Chile’s Catholic dictator Pinochet who tormented Chileans. He was caught and was to be extradited to Spain where he could be put on trial for his crimes against humanity. The Vatican pleaded with international authorities to prevent his extradition – on humanitarian grounds, no less, arguing that the criminal was unwell. This farce might have been more believable, had the Vatican (and its fascist Nuncio to Chile, cardinals and archbishops) also pleaded with Pinochet for humane treatment of the Chilean people when he was still dictator. But the Vatican hadn’t done that, because Pinochet was working for the Church and in a Church-approved manner in his position as tyrant.

    Religious conversion is a deadly weapon much more disastrous than nuclear bombs and Vatican is the biggest terrorist organization that is using it for sowing distress and sorrow in this world. It is high time the civilized world shut down the ‘harvest machinery’ in Vatican .
    Even though the Christian population is “still” at 7%, the Christian Church has tremendous political influence in Sri Lanka. A majority of the major business tycoons, media organization owners, civil activists and almost all the senior cabinet members of the former UNP government were Christians.

    Both Ranil Wickremesinghe and Chandrika Kumaratunge are also widely believed to be closet Christians. Tamil writer DBS Jeyaraj wrote in the (Christian owned) Sunday Leader , Christians have contributed much more to the “Tamil cause” than Hindus. Christianity was brought to this island country of Buddhists and Hindus by the Portuguese, where it was imposed violently on the pre-Christian people against their will. The zealous soldiers of Christ destroyed temples and built Churches where the shrines had stood using the very materials of the broken temples themselves. They killed all those resisting who defended their pre-Christian places of worship.

    From 1574 onwards, the Catholic zealots kept destroying Buddhist and Hindu temples all along the Western coast. The monks and priests over there either fled or got killed or went underground. 1,000 pillared temples in Devundara in the deep south and Trincomalee in the East; the Saman Devale (temple) in Ratnapura; and the Kelaniya temple, all very much revered, were ransacked and burnt.A group of militant monks called Ganinnanse discarded the traditional yellow robe and began to wear a white robe instead to hide themselves.
    The Portuguese deliberately built churches over the ruins of Buddhist or Hindu temples. The present Kochikade church in Colombo and the Madu church in Mannar, both very popular now among Catholics, were Pattini Devales or temples for Kannagi, the famous heroine of Madurai in Tamil Nadu.

    Buddhist schools (pirivenas), which were also mini universities, were ransacked and burnt, and their monk-scholars killed. Among the schools thus destroyed were the Sunethra Devi Pirivena in Kotte, Vidagama Pirivena in Ragama – In 1557 400acre Vidagama Pirivena of Ragama converted to church graveyard and the Tottagamuwe Pirivena in Hikkaduwa. Today there hardly exists a Buddhist Temple over 150 years old in areas once ruled by the Portuguese, particularly in the maritime coast.

    The campaign against Buddhism had the involvement of three principal agencies namely –
    (1) The Roman Catholic Emperor of Portugal (2) His Viceroy at Goa and (3) The Roman Catholic priests in Sri Lanka

    Portuguese came not only for trade and territorial acquisition, but for proselytising. The Papal Bulls of 1452, 1455 and 1456, gave the clear go ahead to Portugal to acquire territory and convert heathens. The Pope had conferred on Portugal a monopoly on all this. Force and intrigue were used convert themMany coastal communities in Sri Lanka underwent mass conversion, particularly in Jaffna, Mannar, and among the fishing communities living north of Colombo such as in Negombo and Chilaw. Roman Catholic churches with schools attached to them served Catholic communities all over the country. These schools also contributed to the spread of the Portuguese language particularly among the upper classes of society.

    The efforts of Roman Catholic clergy particularly the harsh methods adopted by them to convert Buddhists and reduce the influence of Buddhism among the public were viewed with great alarm by the Buddhist Sangha who had fled from Kotte to the Kingdoms of Sitavaka and Kandy, upon the conversion of Dharmapala and the seizure of Buddhist Temples.
    If Portuguese rule had continued and spread to the interior of the island, Sri Lanka would have completely lost its Buddhist heritage and become a completely Westernised and Catholic country. But even with the limited territorial reach (they were strong only in the Western maritime provinces) the impact had been deep, perhaps even indelible.
    Prior to the advent of the Portuguese, there was much Sinhala-Tamil and Buddhist-Tamil amity in Sri Lanka. Hindu temples dotted the maritime provinces, though these were Buddhist-majority areas. In the Thottagamuwa school, no distinction was made between Sinhala and Tamil, Pali and Sanskrit.
    It was the Portuguese who first created a division between the Sinhalas and the Tamils. Most Catholic countries are poverty ridden, with wealth concentrated in the hands of a few. Catholic church is more like a Multi-National Global Corporation than a religious body. The bulk of the Sinhalese Buddhists have got caught up in a Hindu/Catholic problem not of their own making.
    LTTE was NOT “Hindu” led. The fact that the LTTE created huge cemeteries for their dead “Hindu” Tigers shows exactly which religion was in charge. Real Hindus cremate their dead !!

  2. Nanda Says:

    LTTE nay not be Hindu led, but it is certainly conceived, nurtured , supported and trained by Hindu India.
    Number of Hindus involved is 10 times greater than the Christians.
    Christians destroyed many countries including Sri Lanka, but LTTE is the son of Hindu India.

  3. Ratanapala Says:

    Nothing of any value or significance happens in Sri Lanka without the knowledge and the involvement of the Catholic / Christian Church. This is similar to Palu Gedera broken pots; there aren’t any visible perpetrators, but the pots seems to break! The extent of Catholic / Christian church involvement is all pervading. From the time the despicable Portuguese landed in Sri Lanka in 1505 they have not left the corridors of power in Sri Lanka. Even today Sri Lanka is in their deadly grip and severely compromised from the presidential bed chamber to the Maha Bodhi Organisation, through their ever present and strategically placed agents / moles.

    Nanda, you are dead wrong. LTTE is a Catholic sponsored, Catholic organised and Catholic funded organisation. It is the Catholic Church primarily and other Christian Churches that carried the LTTE propaganda throughout the world and collected funds through their church tills. Catholic / Christians provides the glue that binds all the Christian West in one monolithic whole against Buddhist Sri Lanka.

    The Hindu connection of the Eelamists ended the day Prabhakaran and the LTTE became the dominant Eelamist force. Malcolm Ranjith and Rayappu Joseph are two sides of the same coin minted in Vatican!

  4. Christie Says:

    Indian imperialists are using everything they can use to attack us.

  5. douglas Says:

    Take a look at what US Ambassador Sison said on April 3 before the foreign correspondents:-

    “There have been many questions about why the time frame of the investigation was limited to this period (2002-2009). It is not because the international community only cares about what happened between 2002 and 2009. In fact, an independent and credible investigation into all actions,by all parties, for the entire period of the conflict would be good for Sri Lanka.”

    Doesn’t this utterance show how US is now regretting the blunder they made. In another utterance, the Secretary of State John Kerry said: “The Diaspora is now becoming radicalized”. Did he not see this from the very beginning of this “UNHRC DRAMA” orchestrated with Ms. Navi Pillai at the center and Ban Ki Moon behind the stage? Haven’t they NOW realized that all the MAJOR PLAYERS, including those named and mentioned in this article, who brought untold misery to a tiny nation have escaped through the back door and let off the hook. Having thus got off the hook, these culprits have now started another campaign of establishing credentials for a so called “TAMIL NATION”. They will soon tie up with “Trans Government of Tamil Eelam” of Rudrakumaran based in New York. Sri Lankan authorities must now watch carefully these developments and unhesitatingly spring into action the moment the culprits are detected.

    Also in her statement, she says” We encourage the Government of Sri Lanka to heed to fulfill it own obligations to its people and to take meaningful, concrete steps on reconciliation and accountability….”

    YES…YES… the Government of Sri Lanka very well fulfilled its obligation to us by annihilating that terrorist outfit called LTTE. The only thing remains is to get rid of this menace of NOGs and Human Rights Activists who are not allowing us to take any meaningful steps towards reconciliation. Please note, so long as this “MENACE” is operating in this country, with the backing of your Government and others in the West, NO RECONCILIATION or ACCOUNTABILITY will be made possible. You have YET to REALIZE this FACT.

  6. douglas Says:

    I forgot to mention one thing more to this lady.

    There is nothing to tell us how to “reconcile” or as a matter of fact, we can teach them on “reconciliation” very much better than Ms. Pillay or you guys.

    If you really want to see how we reconcile, please do visit our villages during this time of Sinhala & Tamil New Year that falls on April 13 & 14th. You will then be surprised to see how “Generous Souls” we are. Since you are also scheduled to visit Kandy for a cricket match, please take a little of your time to visit the villages in an around that area to see for yourself the “reconciliation” methods we have in practice for generations especially during this time of the year.

    Please do us a favour. Tell these “Professional Human Rights Guys” to get off our back and mind their own business and make a living by honoural means.

  7. Fran Diaz Says:

    Where Sri Lanka is concerned, ever since 1505 and Colonisation > Cold War > Tamil Caste Wars > Class wars of the south, it appears that the country has teetered on the brink of a precipice. The present GoSL has inherited a tough lot of baggage to handle and account for. For instance, the present GoSL has been in power since 2008, yet has to account for past many years of Cold War/Tamil Caste War’ nadagang’ in the country.

    Unless the Sri Lankans unifies as ONE PEOPLE concerned about survival and wellbeing, not much will be achieved. Care about clean food, water, air, good shelter, clothing, education geared to our job needs, the environment, elimination of terrorism/separatism, etc. we don’t have much hope.

    If the bell tolls, ask not for whom it tolls, for it tolls for each of us who does not care about our own wellbeing and also the wellbeing of the rest of Lanka society. Take the case of the CKD issue and polluted waters : Does any church or foreign embassy care a jot about such issues ? In the end, it affects our local farmers and our locally grown food supply and us all. Use the money from funds off the seized assets of various Terrorist/Separatist organizations to fund the Clean Water systems (reverse osmosis). It is to the credit of the present GoSL that they have highlighted the CKD problem. We did not even hear of the CKD problem till some months ago.

    Most of the people from outside who come to help, generally help themselves, including churches. We have to help ourselves to the best of our own ability.

    All sorts of red herrings will be thrown at the public, all kinds of ‘nadagaang’ will be enacted about the war with the LTTE to distract the real work that has to be done. Let us not be deterred in carrying out the real work for the people and country.
    The media must act on this and monitor the work that must be done, and not concentrate overmuch on side shows. Draw up a List of Priorities and get to work.

  8. Fran Diaz Says:

    read as : Without Care about clean food, water, air …..”

  9. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Regarding the Catholic faith and the sub continent. In an ongoing discussion on this subject with an American Doctor who is involved in charitable work in India faced massive discrimination when he tried to help a Dalit and his aging mother to settle in a home. I will paste and copy that part of the correspondence in order to deal with the Indian version of Catholicism.

    “Bernard,

    Well said. Yes. The majority of the disabled children whom I have been blessed to know
    come from just such circumstances as you describe. Many born with physical differences
    made worse by parents who thought their kids might make more lucrative beggars if having
    but one leg they removed the second and a hand or two just for good measure. Yes. I do
    know the injustices about which you speak…. . I get it. Presently, to site one example very close to home, Abhiraman, my partner, and I are trying to finish work on a house there for his aging mother. The neighbors continue to cut the water lines because no water that has touched a Dalit home should flow to their own holy residence. Only the Muslims, not even the Christians, came to their defense against arson, threats of rape and even murder. I am inclined to think that the best thing to do with India is to get the hell out if you can”

    I inquired why the Christians did not help this Dalit and only the Muslims made an effort. To which he replied:

    “You will be interested to know that the Orthodox Catholic Church of India in both its present
    and ancient incarnations inclusive of the Syrian Orthodox Catholic Church of India concluded
    that since Jesus was the Son of God He must have been by definition a member of the Brahman
    caste. Therefore only Brahmans to this day can serve in the priestly caste of both churches and
    their various denominations. Only the Portuguese Roman Catholic Church is the exception.
    In present day India Orthodox Catholics of all stripes cannot intermarry, when this is the case the
    sons of such marriages cannot serve in the priesthood and both bride and groom having fallen from
    grace, are stripped of caste and become by definition Untouchable.”

    This makes sense since Christianity in Europe took on a great deal from the Roman culture, including Latin. Therefore it would also be the same with Hindu India when the apostle St. Thomas converted Hindus but failed to change their way of living. The dichotomy between Christians converted during the Colonial age and those Christians referred by this Doctor are starkly different. As in the case of Europe the ancient conversions of Christians adopted the power structure inherent in the Hindu caste system.

  10. Fran Diaz Says:

    Bernard,
    Re what you say about Tamil Dalits and the Church : How can a small nation like Sri Lanka take on the 3,000 yr old Tamil Caste problem ?
    There are some 11 Million people there classified as Tamil Dalits. it is in this very classification that the intractability lies plus the long 3,000 yrs of accepting such a system tied to the Hindu religion. You will notice that there is no mention of the world Caste in Sri Lanka Government laws or structures. This in itself is the release from Caste.

    Sri Lanka has paid a very heavy price in terms of lives, land and reputation trying to help Tamil folk. Most of them are not even grateful. WE are thankful for those who are grateful to Lanka and Lankans for the sacrifices made for Tamil people. Now Lanka is stuck with international investigation into the so called Tamil Problem, which in truth exists in Tamil Nadu, not Sri Lanka.

    It is more than possible that Mr Modi’s (BJP) 100 Smart Cities will mitigate this problem in Tamil Nadu. New Cities and New Thinking will change history. TN ought to get at least a few Smart Cities. If the leaders there are compassionate, they will create these New Cities sans any Caste structures. So there’s Hope for Tamils of Tamil Nadu. It may take many years, but it is the right way to go.

    The churches ought to let go of Lanka as the spot to solve Tamil Caste Problems.

  11. Nalliah Thayabharan Says:

    LTTE confiscated all the coconut estates from Tamil speaking Sri Lankans and Hindu Temples. But they never touched coconut estates belong to the Catholic Church.

  12. Nalliah Thayabharan Says:

    “a man can marry an infinite amount of women without any limits to how many he can marry”
    – Old Testament – Exodus 21:10

    “King David had six wives and numerous concubines”
    – Old Testament -2 Samuel 5:13; 1 Chronicles 3:1-9, 14:3,

    “King Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines”
    – Old Testament 1 Kings 11:3

    “King Solomon’s son Rehoboam had 18 wives and 60 concubines”
    – Old Testament 2 Chronicles 11:21

    In biblical times adulthood could refer to the age of Puberty or even younger age. The minimum age for marriage according to the Talmud is 13 for boys, 12 for girls (“erusin” can take place before that, and often did in medieval times) and a girl is acquired to be a wife through money, a contract, and sexual intercourse. Usually all of these conditions are satisfied, although only one is enough to effect a binding marriage.

    In Ashkenazi Jewish communities in the Middle Ages, girls were married off very young. Any girl between the age of 3 and 12 was completely subject to her father’s authority, and her father could arrange a marriage for her without her agreement.

    Not only was it a custom in the Jewish society to marry a young girl it was also common in the Arab society.

    The Child Marriage Restraint Act, 1929 which forbade the marriage of a male younger than 21 or a female younger than 18 was passed during the tenure of British rule on pre-partition India.

    Even today about 50% of Yemeni girls are married before 18, some as young as 8.

    BTW the Holy Bible has lots of “interesting” stories like
    2 Samuel 11:2-4
    “One evening David got up from his bed and walked around on the roof of the palace. From the roof he saw a woman bathing. The woman was very beautiful, and David sent someone to find out about her. The man said, ‘Isn’t this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam and the wife of Uriah the Hittite?’ Then David sent messengers to get her. She came to him, and he slept with her. (She had purified herself from her uncleanness.) Then she went back home.”

  13. Nalliah Thayabharan Says:

    With Sri Lanka gaining independence in 1948 the Church changed its role from ‘blessing the aggressor’ to ‘fighting for the underdog’. That probably was the best way to check the progressive measures of the new Sri Lanka Government thereby preventing the transformation of Christian religion from the ‘patronized religion’ to the ‘religion of an insignificant minority’.
    With the advent of Swabasha education the new liberated schools like Ananda and Nalanda broke the Christian monopoly on education and even the Maha Vidyalayas came to the fore with academic achievements surpassing the Christian schools. The Christian education suffered another body blow when they were taken over by the Government with progressive legislation in the 1960.s. Up to that time these Christian schools with their suave and ‘international’ standards were catering to the exclusive sections of the society producing even the leaders of the post independent Sri Lanka. Even today the English language media and the corporate sector in the country is made up of ‘old boys’ of these Christian schools. That way, what the Church could not accomplish in the form religious conversions had been compensated for in the form of conversions in culture and in thinking.
    In 1962 the senior police and security forces staged a coup de’tat against the elected Government of the day. All those officers who were involved were Christians and had that being successful; it was very likely that there would have been religious riots in Colombo as a corollary. It has been suspected for a long time that the powerful force behind the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) was the Catholic Church continuing with the Catholic Portuguese colonial traditions of atrocities and carnage that was led by this church in Sri Lanka. Catholic Church is heavily involved with the LTTE right from the 1970s. It was the Catholic Church that became the loot keepers of the LTTE especially whatever was heisted from the banks. It was also known that during the early days arms were imported into Jaffna and this was aided by the Catholic Church. It was also suspected church premises were used as torture chambers as well. LTTE that has no political ideology whatsoever but only wanted to set up a mafia state and towards which indulged in several killings of Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim political leaders and intellectuals. When the Muslims were ruthlessly chased away from Jaffna, the Catholic Church remained silent. Most of the Muslim families in Jaffna lived in close proximity to Catholic families. This is not strange or peculiar to Sri Lanka. This is what the Catholic Church has been doing in South America, in the Philippines and other countries where murder and mayhem were the methods used for brutal subjugation of people. The fact that the Catholic Church played a major role in the genesis of the LTTE movement under the cover of Tamil liberation is widely known. But this was hardly suspected that it was a powerful force of such magnitude that it has turned out to be and with such overseas clout that Prabhakaran’s role is an utter minimal factor centred on Sri Lanka and perhaps South Asia.
    On March 27, 2009, a group of parents who had escaped from LTTE reported a horrendous account of their experience focused on a priest who was living with them in the No Fire Zone in Puthumathalan. He forcibly helped the Tigers to recruit more than 550 children and young people. In order to ensure the safety of their children, some 600 of them were sent to a church just south of Puthumathalan to protect them from LTTE who were on a ruthless rampage to recruit children. The priest resident in the church,Father James Pathinathar, had promised the parents that he would not allow the LTTE to take away their children. However, when on March 24, a large group of Tiger cadres most of them females arrived, despite the parents informing him about this, the priest allowed them to go into the church. When they ordered the children to go with them, the priest resident in the church,Father James Pathinathar,vanished from the scene.
    There was a dastardly conspiracy headed by the Catholic Church in which many of the INGO and NGO volunteers were fully involved. The kingpin in this conspiracy was Catholic Bishop of Manner, Rev Father Joseph Rayappu, who was often the first person consulted by foreign visitors to Wanni and whose fellow workers or volunteers were active there. An internationally-financed Christian evangelism was initiated in LTTE-held areas in the 1990s. The Ceylon American Mission embarked upon a ‘church planting campaign’. They opened new orphanages and new churches. The Methodist Church did likewise. The Roman Catholic church under its social service arm, HUDEC was not far behind.In the past, during elections the Catholic Bishop of Jaffna had requested all Tamil political parties to cease functioning so that the LTTE could act as the sole representative of the Tamil people. Their position was confirmed by Mr. S. N. Dixit, a former High Commissioner for India, who stated in his book ( “Assignment Colombo” P.228) that,” What was fascinating was that the Tamil Catholic clergy kept arguing in favour of the LTTE throughout my tenure in Sri Lanka…”

    For more than two decades, the Catholic Church took the stand that the ethnic crisis in Sri Lanka was a conflict between the Sinhala Buddhists and the Tamils and that it is not an issue between the State and the terrorists. The LTTE targeted the Buddhists to gain sympathy and support of the Church. And the Church had never ever condemned such actions by the LTTE. According to neutral observers the policy followed by the Catholic Church acted as a supporting pillor for the LTTE. Perceptive observers have publicly accused the Catholic Church of being the invisible hand behind the LTTE’s violent campaign to destroy the unity of Sri Lanka, establish another sovereign state called “Eelam” and in turn reduce the power of the majority Sinhalese and that of the Buddhists. The fact that the militant Tamil organisations including the LTTE and the Christian Peace Activists who are sympathetic to the LTTE were receiving support from Christian institutions was not a public secret. It was a matter of public knowledge that Christian clerics from Western countries had come to Sri Lanka for short visits, to study the ground situation and then write adverse reports heavily tilted in favour of the LTTE and damaging the image of the country. Much of the blame in their reports‚ was on the alleged human rights abuses by the security forces with hardly any mention of the planned and pre-meditated acts of inhumanity by the LTTE.

  14. AnuD Says:

    Sri Lankan Buddhist Sangha but not by the very ambitious- cheevaradharins can counter act some of these church activities by explaining buddhism and buddhist way to very spirituality hungry westerners. There is a greater need and an urge for buddhist practices in the west. But, cheevaradharins are there to accumulate material wealth just like us lay people do.

    Many social problems in the west can be solved by buddhist practices.

  15. Ananda-USA Says:

    Fran Diaz,

    You are correctly focusing in Caste Problems in Tamil Nadu as directly impacting Sri Lanka, but the Caste Problem prevails throughout India, not only in Tamil Nadu, and as long as that PERSISTS, India as a whole will be a Problem for Sri Lanka.

    Also, as BJP’s Narendra Modi says “India should Build Toilets, NOT Temples”!

  16. Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha Says:

    Fran Diaz: Buddhist Sri Lanka should deal with the caste system in Sri Lanka and not worry about India. It is amazing how Indians of all casts including barbaric practices such as animal sacrifices are perfectly willing to give them up when they come to the Western nations, but in Sri Lanka the Hindus still practice the caste system and massive animal sacrifice, knowing only too well that they can get away with it.

    If the same Tamils are willing to change their ways to adhere to the common laws of Europe and the US then why shouldn’t Colombo demand that the practice of the caste system end? why shouldn’t the Buddhist Sanga convert the low casts Tamils to Buddhism as was done by Dr. Ambedkar in India? why should massive numbers of animals continue to be sacrificed even when the Sri Lankan courts have banned such practices. Time to enforce the law to stop such savagery in Sri Lanka.

    If the Sri Lankan Hindus are more than willing to adopt the values of Western nations in order to assimilate and not be caste aside for their behavior then Colombo should expect no less.

  17. Fran Diaz Says:

    Sri Lanka and India have a common past in one sense in that both countries were Colonised. Now both countries are getting Globalised.

    Both countries HAVE to ‘modernize’ while keeping value systems intact. Peace through Economic activity is a fair approach but not a lasting one. Trust building has to happen. That happens through Understanding about Life and our common lot as human beings. Watch wopg.org for a wise approach to life.

    ———-

    Ananda,
    Tamil Nadu is the longstanding neighbor problem we have due mainly to Caste/poverty problem of Tamils. Delhi also suffers from divisive politics from Tamil Nadu led Southern separatism there. (see book “Breaking India’ Malhotra/Neelakandan). Also, terribly old fashioned leadership there. By ‘old fashioned’ I mean lack of vision as to what their people really want and bogged down in unsavory past divisions and separatism, a rather closed area. Also, it is Tamil Nadu that lays blame on Sri Lanka for a number of so called ‘Tamil problems’. The Catholic church is a sort of ‘Kapurala’ who tries to marry the past with the present, but is not really trusted by the mass people on either side of the Palk Sts.

    —–

    Bernard, Tamil Nadu has banned Animal Sacrifice. So should Lanka.

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