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Filipino church leaders condemn Sri Lanka bombings

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By Leslie Ann Aquino 

Church leaders in the Philippines condemned the Easter Sunday bombings of several churches and hotels in Sri Lanka.

Sri Lankan security personnel walk next to dead bodies on the floor amid blast debris at St. Anthony's Shrine following an explosion in the church in Kochchikade in Colombo on April 21, 2019.  (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sri Lankan security personnel walk next to dead bodies on the floor amid blast debris at St. Anthony’s Shrine following an explosion in the church in Kochchikade in Colombo on April 21, 2019. (Photo by ISHARA S. KODIKARA / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

Sorsogon Bishop Arturo Bastes described the act, which killed more than 200 people and injured hundreds, as extremely evil and blasphemous.

“The act is extremely evil and deserves universal condemnation in this world and in the world to come. The timing of the act alone is blasphemous because it happened on Easter Sunday when all are raised to eternal life because Christ our Head is risen,” he said in an interview.

Even the choice of the places targeted, Bastes said, was absolutely “diabolic” because people were gathered to thank God for giving a glorious life without end.

“We the living can only entrust ourselves to God who judges justly while requesting the civil authorities to do their duty of keeping people safe from satanic terrorists!” he said.

Ozamis Archbishop Martin Jumoad was also saddened by the incident.

“It is too sad that those innocent worshippers whose intention was only to celebrate Easter died due to cruel acts of violence. I hope those who participated in planning and in the execution of the terroristic acts will not be given peace of mind unless they will repent and face the court of law,” he said.

The Ozamis prelate appealed to all people of good will to unite and never allow evil to succeed.

“Let us not hesitate to report to authorities if we feel and see someone is about to do something evil. Remember, evil triumphs if good men do nothing at all,” he said.

Balanga Bishop Ruperto Santos said the bombings in Sri Lankan churches and hotels must be denounced and condemned as these were attacks on peace and humanity.

He said the whole world grieves and stands with the people of Sri Lanka.

“Let us pray that they may remain strong, firm with their faith and rise up again. We pray for conversion and change of hearts for those harbor false ideology,” said Santos.

“May the souls of those who perished may find eternal rest and at peace,” he added.

Read more: Easter blasts at Sri Lanka hotels and churches kill at least 207

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