Aug 7, 2013

Cardinal Turkson in Hiroshima

Cardinal Peter Turkson, President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, is in Japan to join the "Ten Days for Peace" organised by Japanese Bishops' Conference.  This ten days of several activities and prayers for peace was organised by Japanese Bishops in response to the call for world peace made by Blessed John Paul II in 1981 during his visit to Hiroshima. It begins on 6 August, the memorial day of Hiroshima bombing and will end on 15 August, the day of Japanese surrender in 1945.  Also 9 August is memorial day of Nagasaki bombing.  For all these three days, government also organises its own memorial services.

Cardinal Turkson arrived in Hiroshima in the afternoon on 5 August.  First of all, he met with members of the Episcopal Commission for Social Issues to discuss about several social justice issues in Japan.  Then he proceeded to Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park with Archbishop Chennoth, apostolic nuncio to Japan, Bishop Maeda, bishop of Hiroshima and other Japanese bishops to join the Catholic and Anglican Prayer meeting for Peace.  Though it was raining heavy at that time, quite a number of members from both Anglican and Catholic gathered together to pray.  Of course, a shelter was provided to all.  After the prayer meeting, participants marched through the town of Hiroshima till the Catholic Cathedral and Cardinal Turkson also joined the march of almost 2 Km.

From 7pm on 5 August, memorial Mass was celebrated in the Catholic Cathedral of Hiroshima and Cardinal Turkson gave a homily.  The text of this homily in English is found in this link.

Cardinal and Nuncio also joined the government organised ceremony on 6 August morning while we gathered again in the Cathedral to attend Mass said by Bishop Maeda.

Cardinal will travel to Nagasaki to attend several inter-faith meetings and also government organised ceremony on 9 August.   

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