Vocations Increase in India Despite Persecution, Says Bishop

New Dehli, India, Jul 23, 2010 / 12:52 am (CNA).- Despite increased persecution, vocations to the priesthood in the north region of India are continuing to grow. Bishop Anthony Chirayath of Sagar Diocese in the state of Madhya Pradesh reported that the number of candidates to the priesthood in his diocese has been on the rise for the past decade.

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This is really wonderful. I guest priest from India was at my parish 2 Sundays ago and said during the homily how much Indians are persecuted for being Christians. He even said there is a law against baptizing anyone there and that children are teased by their classmates. It really spoke to me about how much more I should be doing to love Jesus in a country where Christianity is the dominate religion and I’m not persecuted. The guest priest also said that it cost money to help with the vocations and asked that we help by sponsoring a seminarian and helping him get through the seminary to become a priest. I would like to help but I’m strapped I hope that the number of Christians in India continue to grow and that money will come in to help with the vocations.

Couple years ago, I sponsored a seminarian brother from Asia. It was a one year monetary support. It was enough to provide him an education and continue him to priesthood. It was a wonderful thing to do.

That’s really awesome Mugen. The guest priest at my parish was a sponsored seminarian himself and now he’s a priest so you can see the results of your help in a concrete way. I think it even echoes from that because then that priest will be shepherding others. I don’t have the money but I still picked up the address in India so maybe in the future I can give something.

I was so surprised when I heard about christian converts being persecuted in India. The priest said it was north india in particular. This is surprising because Hinduism claims to be all embracing with the notion that all paths to God lead to one God. But perhaps its just the people. Maybe there is some fear of missionaries in India. Or maybe it the teachings of Christianity that would be against the caste system. That all men are children of God and that one must love his neighbor no matter if he’s poor or rich. Thank God it’s getting better though.

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