ASIA/PAKISTAN - Preach the Gospel of service, peace and development in the declarations of the new Apostolic Vicar of Quetta

Thursday, 25 March 2021 bishops   peace   gospel   development   evangelization   announcement  

Quetta (Agenzia Fides) - "Peace is the world's most urgent need. This is why I have chosen the episcopal motto 'Service, Peace, Development'. All human beings are a human family and God wants all human beings to live happy and healthy lives. Today our world is divided in the face of different types of discrimination. I feel it is time to preach the Gospel of peace and development, without any discrimination". It is in these terms that His Exc. Bishop Khalid Rehmat OFM Cap, new Apostolic Vicar of Quetta, in Beuchistan province, greeted the assembly after his episcopal ordination which took place on March 25 at Saint Francis Grammar School in Quetta.
As Agenzia Fides learned, Bishop Khalid Rehmat OFM Cap, also stated: "I give thanks to God who showed me His mercy and called me to this service". Quoting the biblical verse Luke 4.18: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, he anointed me to bring the good news to the poor", the Bishop said: "I am ready to serve the Church with great humility. I entrust my service to our Most Holy Mother Mary, whose feast we are celebrating today, and who pronounced her 'Yes' to the Lord. I express my gratitude to God as his unworthy servant in his vineyard".
Archbishop Christophe Zakhia El-Kassis, Apostolic Nuncio to Pakistan, was the main consecrator, with the co-consecrators Cardinal Joseph Coutts, Archbishop Emeritus of Karachi, and Archbishop Joseph Arshad, President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Pakistan. Priests, nuns and hundreds of people were present, gathered
respecting the security protocols for Covid-19 and social distancing.
Archbishop Christophe Zakhia El-Kassis, after the ordination, unveiled the coat of arms of the new Bishop. Addressing the assembly, and in particular the Bishop, the Apostolic Nuncio said: "The new Bishop is called to serve in a land, that of Baluchistan, unknown to him, and I believe that the Holy Spirit will guide him to serve the faithful of Quetta with love and care". The Nuncio called all priests and faithful to support the new Bishop and to collaborate with him in obedience. The Nuncio also paid tribute to the late Bishop Victor Gnanapragasm OMI, who served in the territory for two decades, asking the assembly to remain silent for a minute, as a sign of gratitude, love and appreciation for the first Bishop of Quetta, who offered his life in pastoral service to the Church.
Bishop Khalid Rehmat is the first Pakistani Capuchin priest and the first priest of the Catholic diocese of Islamabad-Rawalpindi to be ordained a bishop. He was born on 5 August 1968 in a small village of Mariakhel, in Punjab, and is the fourth son of the family of Rehmat Masih and Martha Bibi. He entered the Capuchin House of Formation in 1995 and, after completing his studies, he made his solemn profession on December 28, 2007 and was ordained a priest on August 16, 2008 in the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Lahore. Pope Francis elected him Apostolic Vicar of the Apostolic Vicariate of Quetta on January 1, 2021 (see Fides, 4/1/2021) after the death of Bishop Victor Gnanapragasm OMI (see Fides, 16/12/2020).
(AG-PA) (Agenzia Fides, 25/3/2021)