NaMo Headed for Rome on Saintly Mission

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is packing to fly to the Vatican to attend Mother Teresa’s canonisation in September.

Published: 01st May 2016 05:07 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st May 2016 07:41 AM   |  A+A-


NEW DELHI:Prime Minister Narendra Modi is packing to fly to the Vatican to attend Mother Teresa’s canonisation  in September, an event that is expected to draw a large international crowd. Modi, keen to send out a positive global message to the international community, expressed his intentions to visit the ceremony, according to Catholics Bishops Council of India   (CBCI) office-bearers. “We have requested the Prime Minister to lead the delegation. He said that he is honoured by the invite for a function being organised to respect a great soul,’’ said Fr Chinnayan, deputy secretary general, CBCI.

The PM told Fr Chinnayan that his government will send also an official invite to the Vatican, inviting the Pope to India. “The PMO has told the Ministry of External Affairs to work out the details of the Vatican invite. Plans may be worked out soon after getting inputs from the Vatican,’’ said an official who arranged the meeting between the PM and the church officials.

The PM’s proposed trip to the Vatican can bring the Christian community closer to BJP, especially in Kerala, said a former bureaucrat acting as the bridge between the government and the Christian communities. Despite the church’s declared policy of not meddling in politics, it has kept its doors open to senior BJP leaders. The PM’s initiatives to ensure  the safety of Fr Tom Uzhunnalil, the Kerala priest abducted by the ISIS in Yemen, has pleased the Catholics. “We felt so secure when we came to know that PM personally has taken initiatives for his release,” said the priest. 

Modi has reasons to smile, since it is a sentiment shared by the entire Catholic community.


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