Sunday Worship at 8:10am on BBC Radio 4 this Sunday comes from Pakistan


9th January 2007

Following in the footsteps of Bishop Kevin Dunn and Bishop Terrance Brain, Bishop Peter Doyle spent a week in Pakistan visiting parishes, schools and projects sponsored by the Pontifical Mission Societies.

With him were Father Gerry Brassington from Clifton Diocese, Mr John Hughes from the Archdiocese of Cardiff and Mr Mark O’Brien, a BBC Radio producer.

The group visited three dioceses – Karachi, Islamabad and Faisalabad. Everywhere they went, they experienced a great welcome with flower garlands, song and dance, and, on one occasion, the presentation of turbans!

Catholics in Pakistan amount to just over 1% of the population. The communities gather in compounds, often guarded, with a church, a school, a hostel and dispensary, a convent and a priest’s house.

A highlight of the week was a visit to the earthquake region of Kashmir. Although an intensely Islamic area bordering Afghanistan, China and India, Christians were among the first to bring aid to a stricken community which is still recovering.

Bishop Peter tells us: ‘It was a wonderful experience. The joy and the faith and the vigour of some very beleaguered Catholic communities was inspiring, and gave me new heart for the mission of the Church here at home.’