|An Easter Message to the Nation
From the Rt Revd Duleep de Chickera, Bishop of Colombo
March 22, 2008
[The Church of Ceylon (E-P) - Ceylon] Easter is the Christian festival that celebrates the Raising of Christ after His death. This historic event, known as the Resurrection, declares the defeat of all evil forces of greed, violence and destruction that culminated in the death of Christ, and proclaims a higher plane of life in which there is liberation from these evil tendencies.
Consequently the celebration of Easter in our beloved Sri Lanka today, ravaged and torn apart by the ruthless greed and violent machinations of evil persons, brings us hope. Because Christ has been raised from the dead, all that degrades, dehumanises and destroys the dignity of human life around us will not last. And because Christ has been raised from the dead, a new, more abundant life of peace, justice and integration is available for all. But for this to happen we are called to renounce evil in its many forms and affirm life in its highest God-intended form. Renunciation and affirmation are more than words; they comprise a lifestyle that strives in rhythm to create and sustain an alternative pro-life socio-political culture.
So, Easter is an invitation to renounce lawlessness and affirm order,
renounce killings and affirm life,
renounce poverty and affirm justice,
renounce violence and affirm dialogue,
renounce hypocrisy and affirm integrity,
renounce communalism and affirm pluralism,
renounce authoritarianism and affirm dissent,
renounce intimidation and affirm growth,
renounce ridicule and affirm respect,
renounce false propaganda and affirm truth,
renounce arrogance and affirm humility,
renounce terrorism and affirm freedom,
renounce accumulation and affirm distribution,
renounce exploitation and affirm empowerment,
renounce corruption and affirm transparency.
renounce selfishness and affirm sharing,
renounce revenge and affirm forgiveness.
May this Easter hope remind us that the triumph of evil is at the most only temporary.
May this Easter courage reveal to us all that all who deceive, manipulate and terrorise the people and exploit the poor, will not prevail
May this Easter integrity teach us all that the truth will one day set us free,
May this Easter love transform us one and all to embrace our enemies and convert them into brothers and sisters through repentance, forgiveness and reconciliation.
And may this Easter faith lead us all from death to life and darkness to light.
With Easter Greetings, Peace and Blessings to all our people,
The Rt Revd Duleep de Chickera
Bishop of Colombo