Saturday, December 27, 2008

Belarus' top Catholic clergyman greets Christians on Christmas

Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz, archbishop of the Minsk-Mahilyow Archdiocese, greeted Belarus' Christians on Christmas Day.

"For thousands of years, the humankind was waiting for God's guest who would answer questions of their concern," Msgr. Kondrusiewicz says in his message. "

The today night of Christmas means that there is no need to wait for anybody any longer. Not some outlander or alien, but God, someone who is significantly more important, has come to us to help man lost in this world to find Him and understand themselves."

The country's top Catholic clergyman said that he wanted to greet on Christmas people of all Christian denominations, "especially the brotherly Orthodox church."

"Jesus has come to all people, and all of us believe in one Savior who was born by Virgin Mary in Bethlehem and hold the same belief in the incarnation of God, though belonging to different Christian communities," he said. "Our common name, Christian, comes from Christ, our Savior. That is why we have a common faith and joy."

Some 1.5 million Belarusians consider themselves Roman Catholic Christians, according to the Roman Catholic Church in Belarus.

The Roman Catholic Church in Belarus has 440 communities, 350 of which have a church.

There are 430 priests, with almost 260 of them being Belarusian nationals.

There are also 410 nuns. Some 240 of them are Belarusian citizens.

The church has two seminaries, in Hrodna and Pinsk, where 90 people study to take the gown.

It also has four publishing houses.

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(Source: BPAN)