The Council of Priests of the Archdiocese of Colombo have categorically condemned a twitter message circulated by Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera accusing him of giving a distorted interpretation of His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith’s visit to the Venerable Athuraliye Rathana Thero along with two other bishops and some Catholic clergy.
Finance Minister Mangala Samaraweera had accused Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of fanning the flames of hatred.
Samaraweera tweeted saying Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith was fanning the flames of hatred and communism by visiting fasting monk the Venerable Athuraliye Rathana Thero.
The Council of Priests said that the monk had been on a hunger strike on behalf of the victims of the Easter Sunday attacks demanding the expediting of the outcome of the investigations that are underway and the removal from office of two Governors of the Provinces and a minister attached to the Sri Lankan Government who is alleged to have had close ties with those responsible for extremist terrorist activities in Sri Lanka.
“We also state that as Catholics we will continue to support the peace efforts among religions, especially between Sinhalese, Tamils, Muslims, Burghers and other peoples as a long standing common heritage of the citizens of Sri Lanka and inform Minister Samaraweera and all others engaged in spreading erroneous and vengeful comment via social media of the same,” the Council of Priests said.
The Council of Priests said they strongly voice their opposition to Minister Mangala Samaraweera who has criticized the efforts of Religious harmony advocated by His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith by his imprudent twitter message.
The Council of Priests said highly commend the leadership given by His Eminence Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith in the aftermath of the Easter Sunday attack on 21st April 2019 by his appeal to remain calm and ensured religious harmony in the country, especially appealing not to harm the Muslim Community.
The Council of Priests also said that they salute His Eminence for the great contribution he made during this crisis to maintain National Peace in Sri Lanka. (Colombo Gazette)