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Thousands Attend Easter Sunday Services in UAE Amid Global Calls for Peace

Thousands Attend Easter Sunday Services in UAE Amid Global Calls for Peace

In a display of faith and solidarity, tens of thousands of Catholics gathered across the UAE to observe Easter Sunday services amidst ongoing calls for peace, particularly in the Holy Land. The celebrations took place against the backdrop of escalating conflict, with Pope Francis urging for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza during his address from the Vatican.

Easter Sunday Masses commenced as early as 4 am at St Joseph’s Cathedral in Abu Dhabi and St Mary’s Catholic Church in Dubai, drawing large congregations of worshippers. The atmosphere was one of reverence and unity as individuals came together to commemorate the holiest day in the Christian calendar.

Fr Darick D’Souza, secretary to Paolo Martinelli, bishop of Southern Arabia, highlighted the significance of Easter, describing it as a symbol of the foundation of the Christian faith. He also emphasized the importance of reorganizing the weekend to accommodate religious obligations, citing the UAE’s decision to shift the weekend to Saturday and Sunday.

Throughout the day, numerous services were conducted in various languages, including Arabic, Malayalam, and Urdu, catering to the diverse Catholic community in the Emirates. Additionally, Easter services were scheduled at St Francis Church in the Abrahamic Family House on Saadiyat Island and other Catholic churches nationwide.

Pope Francis used his traditional Easter message to address the ongoing conflict in Gaza, emphasizing the urgent need for humanitarian aid delivery and calling for an immediate ceasefire. He expressed concern for hostages and the devastating impact of war on children, urging for prayers and action towards peace. Bishop Paolo Martinelli echoed these sentiments, urging Christians to be peacemakers and offering prayers for peace in conflict-affected regions worldwide.

While Pope Francis did not explicitly mention Palestine or Gaza, his message resonated with worshippers, highlighting the universal call for peace and compassion. As Christians celebrated the resurrection of Jesus, they also reflected on the importance of fostering harmony and understanding in a world plagued by violence and conflict.

The Easter Sunday services served as a reminder of the power of faith to unite communities and inspire hope even in the face of adversity. Amidst global challenges, the message of peace echoed by religious leaders resonated deeply with worshippers, reaffirming the importance of working towards a world where peace and compassion prevail.

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