ISLAMABAD ( Chaudhry Ahsan Premee ) Pakistani Christians are part and parcel of the nation, said Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani, former Prime Minister of Pakistan. Talking to the opening session of National Church Leadership Conference, he said during his tenure, he facilitated the minorities of Pakistan creating interfaith harmony ministry, awarding five percent quota and declaring 11 August as National Minority Day. This type of conference is encouraging for others.
Everything rise and fall on leadership, said Pastor Henry Madava, key speaker of the conference. Talking at the opening ceremony at Convention Centre, Islamabad, he said, Nelson Mendala, who led South Africa from apartheid to democracy, was a humble, persuasive and inspirational figure who advocated peace, democracy and human right. He said, “Real leaders must be ready to sacrifice for the freedom of their people.”
Since my childhood, I dreamed of the day to have a contented and prosperous life, but today, my dream turned the way I imagined it, but there is nothing I can do about it, he added. This is how Pakistani Christians community lives look today, and we have to adopt. Christians represent just a sliver of the population of the Pakistan. Major portion of the Christians’ population settled in the outskirts of the cities with dirt roads and cement-block homes. Most face daily discrimination and eke out a living by holding low-paying jobs. However, they’ve carved out their own lives in the country that faces near-daily attacks by the extremists. Yet despite these worries, life goes on for Christians here. But I wish to attract your attention to very serious problem and I hope you will take some positive steps. The problem is non-visionary Christian leadership in Pakistan.
Pakistani Christians are facing many problems and sufferings. This leadership conference is organized to think and find the solutions of it, instead creating gaps; we need to become bridge among people of different faith and culture. Poverty is a big problem in our Pakistan, many of them have no money or not enough money to get food, clothes and get education for their children. People across the country have come here to receive their blessings and their life will be changed after this conference and they will play positive role in this regard. Unfortunately religious leadership is least interested in creating better interaction.
Pastor Francis Hayat, National Director said in his welcome remarks, removing barriers to success like discrimination and divisions is a necessity for success. There are many young ones dreaming of the day to have a contented and prosperous life like me. People in leadership role can help them seek out and capitalize on more opportunities, find solutions to challenges before problems and create a happier, healthier, more productive life. There is urgent need to establish equality, social justice and peace. In reference to the ongoing persecution and discrimination suffering the Christian, it is duty of the leadership to take stand to save the rights of the community to prove themselves the real leaders, “Humble and United”.